How will you create your design brief for your new home?

A design brief is a document that you put together to describe what you want in your new home.

A typical home design brief usually reads something like this...

"We need so and so square feet with this many bedrooms and we’re into open plan living. We’d like an office space and by the way we’d like such and such a style of house."

And there's usually some inspiration images to go along with it.

That’s not much information to go on.

I think we can do better than that.

When you create your design brief it’s an opportunity to fully explore what your new home should be. Don’t miss the opportunity to tell the full story - the full ‘why’ of your new home.

To define what you want in your dream home, you must first imagine how you want to live in it.

Join me, Meg Escott as I lead you through a series of exercises where you will…

  • Gather the factual information you'll need to feed into your home design.
  • Gain a detailed understanding of how you want to live in your new home.
  • Develop a richer interpretation of your inspiration images and cultivate your aesthetic taste.
  • Discover ways to use your rooms and spaces better.
  • Get a head start in making all the decisions you'll need to make.
  • Seize design opportunities to elevate the experience of living in your new home.
  • Work out how your home design could improve your relationships.
  • Be clear and mindful about what you need and intentional about what you want.
  • Create an insightful design brief that will guide the design direction of your project.

I'll introduce you to these tools and techniques...

  • Home design psychology so that your new home will be meaningful and reflect who you are.
  • Activity based home design – so that your new home will function well and support the way you want to live. 
  • Vision boarding – so that you’ll love the way your new home looks. You’ve probably heard of mood boarding before. Vision boarding goes into more depth.

These exercises will ensure that you tell the full story of what you want your new home to be.

What is home design psychology anyway?

So what’s this all about? It’s about finding out what you really want in your home. What are the design elements that will give you that warm fuzzy feeling that you are at home?

These questions can be answered by turning to the field of home design psychology. Now before you turn away saying 'I don't need therapy', I promise you this isn’t woo-woo psychobabble. Stay with me here and you’ll see it makes sense.

To explain the benefits of home design psychology, I'd like to start with a thought experiment...

Describing your home vs describing your ideal partner

Let’s say you sign up on an online dating site. One of the first things to do is describe what you’re looking for in your ideal partner. We often have a visual image in mind of what our ideal partner might look like, and yet we all know that in the long run, for a long term relationship, it’s other things that really matter. You search is more likely to succeed if you outline the activities you enjoy and some of the character traits and values you’re looking for in a partner.

Well - it's the same for a home. The psychology of home is all about teasing out the deeper values that we want our homes to reflect and figuring out how we can design our homes to match our values and best support our day to day lives. For once, it's all about YOU! 

How does Home Design Psychology Work?

When you embark on a home design psychology process you’ll be taken through some exercises which involve, among other things:

  • Examining your feelings about homes you’ve lived in your past.
  • Exploring how you react to different settings and home design features.
  • Thinking about how your home design effects your relationships.

At the end of the process you'll have a solid idea of what will make a space seem like home to you.

Be your own Home Design Psychologist

Home design psychologists tend to be expensive, around $175 per hour.

The good news is that I have researched the work of several home design psychologists in order to create the HPH Design Brief Workshop so you can be your own home design psychologist.

Maureen B

I'm finding the workshop absolutely terrific 😀. It's focusing my thoughts and introducing new ways to think about spaces.

Activity Based Home Design Explained

Activity Based Home Design involves looking closely at your day to day activities in order to determine how you want to live in your new home.

Activity patterns help you understand the functional requirements of your home in greater depth. They also help you identify ways in which your experience at home can be improved.

An activity based home design process based on the activities that make up your day to day life rather than thinking just in terms of spaces leads to a more livable, elegant and efficient home design. 

With a bit of forethought about your home design you can add elements that will increase the pleasure in your daily comings and goings around your home and improve your relationships at home.

Ricki W

To have a structured way to understand what you want in a new build, or in a remodel is brilliant.

Vision Boarding

I have yet to meet a homeowner who doesn’t have a collection of images to show what they want their new home to look like. Most homeowners spend a great deal of time pinning pins and liking Instagram posts and the sheer number of images available is astounding. It’s not long before you’re swamped!

Vision Boarding is a method which puts a structure around the process of collecting images, so you’ll use your time productively and won’t get overwhelmed.

You’ll learn to collect and thoroughly examine images so that you can select those that truly reflect what you want in your new home. 

Using the Vision Boarding exercises you’ll

  • Understand in more depth why you like what you like
  • Understand where your partner is coming from in terms of aesthetic taste
  • Work out ways that you can combine you and your partner’s taste
  • Pick out the architectural design features which contribute to the design of your spaces (not just the decoration)
  • Curate a valuable collection of images which communicates what you want in your new home to designers and suppliers.
Kelly S

There is a lot of great information in each section, and it's easy to follow and understand. Through the workshop I found myself considering things that I hadn't previously.

This workshop is for...

People planning a new build or major remodel of their home

People who are looking for a new home to buy or rent or looking to use the space in their home better also find the workshop helpful.

People who want their new home to fit their lifestyle

You can decide if you want your home to support the way you want to live, or if you’re going to let your new home dictate how you live. The choice is yours. With a well thought out design brief you’ll have a solid foundation for the design so that you can be the boss of your design and how you live in your new home – not the other way around.

People using any approach to design their new home

You may intend to work with an architect or other design professional and you'll use your design brief to communicate your vision.

If you’re planning to design your own home then your design brief will help set and keep you on course.

Maybe you’re planning to buy a house plan or new home, in which case you can use the Design Brief Workshop to help you clarify your thoughts about what plans would work best. 

People who want a structured approach to organize their thoughts

You’ve got lots of ideas swimming around in your head and yet you’re concerned you might miss something. This course creates a framework for your thought process and keeps things organized.

This workshop is not for...

People who think they’ll get the home of their dreams by listing spaces and including a few inspiration images. If that’s all you want your design brief to be, just go ahead and do it, you don’t need this workshop for that.

People who aren’t willing to spend time thinking about what they want and need in their new home. Deep thought and reflection take time. When it comes to your home design, you get out what you put in.

People who aren’t interested in increasing their home design awareness. This course is designed for people who want to be fully aware of the design choices they’re making. If this isn’t you, this course isn’t for you. 

What's included in the Design Brief Workshop?

This workshop is self-paced so you can take your time and work at your own pace.

Each concept is explained in detail and there are workbooks and templates for you to use.