Interior design and interior architecture are all about creating and designing indoor spaces, but these terms are often people conflated by people. Their roles and responsibilities are significantly different.

An interior architect has a great emphasis on the creative design functionality of the design. On the other hand, the interior designer focuses on furnishing and accessorizing of the indoor spaces. 

This article will explain the interior designer and interior architect to understand which career path you should pick.

What are Interior Architects?

The interior architects design and plan the interior spaces by combining architecture and design. Their role involves creating stylish yet functional spaces that cater to the operational and aesthetic requirements of their clients. 

They have to conduct a balancing act among the building’s design aspects, functionality, and safety in a building project, considering elements like color, lighting, materials, and more.

What skills do interior architects need?

They must have the creative skills to research innovative layouts and conceptual designs to redefine interior environments. They should be good problem-solvers and communicators. 

Having good problem-solving skills enables them to model, stimulate, and test the design proposals more efficiently. Moreover, they must understand the adaptive reuse and basics of interior architecture.

What are interior designers?

Interior Designer Project

Interior designers are specialized in creating and enhancing interior spaces to make them aseptically pleasing and functional. Their main focuses are furnishing and design aesthetics.

 They understand the needs of their clients, objectives, and preferences and then use their design expertise to create functional, safe, and beautiful spaces. They incorporate material specification, color, lighting, technical design, furniture placement, and other decorative elements to enhance the function and look of an indoor space.

What skills do interior designers need? 

They need similar skills to the interior architects, but their role is more of a focus on the atmospheric and decorative design aspects. Designers need a strong creative flair to develop a visually appealing design concept. 

They must know color theory, material, furniture selection, sketching, historic design periods, sustainable practices, classic design ranges, and design principles. Understanding design principles like harmony, balance, and contrast is crucial to creating cohesive and appealing.

So, what is Different Between an Interior Architect and an Interior Designer?

Interior designers and interior architects work in the field of creating and designing interior spaces. However, they both have distinct roles and responsibilities. Here are the fundamental differences between interior architects and interior designers.

Scope of work:

Interior Architects: They have a broader scope of work than interior designers, including aesthetic and structural aspects of the space. They design and renovate the existing structure within the interior space, like ceilings, windows, walls, etc.

Interior designers: They primarily focus on fictional aspects and aesthetics of interior spaces. Their work is less concerned with the structural changes to an area. 


Interior Architect: Interior architects should have a bachelor’s degree in the related field approved by the National Architecture Accrediting Board. All architects must have a license to work as interior architects. However, the licensing requirement may vary from one state to another.

Interior Designer: Interior designers must have a bachelor’s degree in interior design or related fields. Courses should include drawing, CAD, and interior design. Licensing requirements vary by state.


Interior Architect: Some interior architects specialize in designing new interior spaces, while some specialize in renovating existing spaces.

Interior Designer: Interior designers specialize in specific areas, certain styles, and structures, while some work as generalists. 


We hope you have understood the difference between interior architects and interior designers. If you want an interior designer or architect to bring your vision to life, explore our portfolio for inspiration, and contact Fowler Interiors today to schedule a consultation.