How to become an Interior Decorator

Interior decorators plan and implement decoration schemes for homes, offices, shops, hotels and venues.

Personal requirements for an Interior Decorator

  • Creativity
  • Good understanding of colour
  • Able to promote ideas
  • Awareness of fashion and design trends
  • Able to interact well with a variety of people

Education & Training for an Interior Decorator

You can work as an interior decorator without formal qualifications, but employers usually require Year 10. You will probably get some informal training on the job.Entry to this occupation may be improved if you have qualifications. You may like to consider a VET qualification. Applicants may be required to attend an interview and/or submit a folio of work. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information.

Duties & Tasks of an Interior Decorator

Interior decorators:

  • Advise clients on the selection of colour schemes, layout, lighting, furniture, floor coverings, curtains, paint, wallpaper and hardware products (such as curtain fittings)
  • Visit clients' premises to look at existing conditions and make measurements
  • Provide sketch designs, specifications and cost estimates to the client for approval
  • Supervise and coordinate the installation and arrangement of furniture and furnishings
  • Undertake direct selling if working in a retail shop.


  • May run their own business..
  • Plans interior infrastructure such as lighting, air-conditioning and communication cabling..
  • Plans and designs whole building interiors, rooms, shops, residential and leisure spaces..
  • Works with architects and other contractors at the early stages of designing an interior space..
  • Keep up to date with trends and legal requirements in interior design..
  • Prepares drawings, samples and decorating instructions..
  • Analyses clients' requirements..
  • Designs furniture or fittings..
  • Discusses design ideas and provides advice to clients..
  • Makes any necessary changes to the designs or drawings..
  • Advises on hiring trades people..
  • May be involved with project management..

Working conditions for an Interior Decorator

Interior decorators may have to work extended or irregular hours to meet clients' needs.

Employment Opportunities for an Interior Decorator

Interior decorators work as retail decorator consultants, freelance decorators, consultants and managers with large department outlets, architectural support staff, colour scheme coordinators, retail sales assistants and decorators for the wholesale sector of the profession. Some experienced decorators establish their own businesses.Competition for employment as an interior decorator is very strong. A good deal of training takes place on the job and, as with other artistic areas, those who can demonstrate a high degree of talent and flair are more likely to gain employment.


Interior Decorator

Interior decorators plan and implement decoration schemes for homes, offices, shops, hotels and venues.

  • Average age
    Average age
    43 years
  • Future Growth
    Future Growth
    Very strong
  • Gender Share
    Gender Share
    91% female
  • Average full-time
    Average full-time
    44 hours
  • Weekly Pay
    Weekly Pay
  • Skill level rating
    Skill level rating
    High skill
  • Unemployment
    Lower unemployment
  • Full-Time Share
    Full-Time Share
    46% Full-Time
  • Employment Size
    Employment Size
    1,600 workers
  • Employment Size
    Employment by state
    ACT: 1.0%
    NSW: 36.7%
    NT: 0.2%
    QLD: 16.1%
    SA: 6.3%
    TAS: 0.8%
    VIC: 31.7%
    WA: 7.1%
  • Employment Size
    Age brackets
    15-19: 0.6%
    20-24: 5.1%
    25-34: 22.8%
    35-44: 25%
    45-54: 25.6%
    55-59: 9.7%
    60-64: 4.8%
    65 and Over: 6.5%
  • Employment Size
    Education level
    Advanced Diploma/Diploma: 30.8%
    Bachelor degree: 23.1%
    Certificate III/IV: 10.3%
    Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate: 2.2%
    Year 10 and below: 7.9%
    Year 11: 6.1%
    Year 12: 19.6%
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