The Complete Picture

.........helping with the design ideas to get you started

Christina Narayanan of The Complete Picture is an interior designer, colour consultant and kitchen designer.  Contact Christina if you need someone to answer questions or help you to navigate through your next renovation, new built or interior project.

FAQs and References

Can I really afford to use an interior designer?

Most people believe that working with an interior designer is going to cost a lot of money.  For myself at least, I can say that it is not the case at all.  Most interior designers work one of two ways-they are used to come up with ideas for the design of a space, or the come up with ideas for the design of a space and project manage the whole design from A-Z.  Project management is a great option if you have absolutely no idea or if it is a very high end job, but this comes with a price tag to match.  I prefer to use the first option.

Opting for a designer to come into your home and suggest ideas on design and colour means that you only pay on a hourly rate.  I recently worked with a lovely couple who were in the process of building their retirement home.  They wanted help with the choice of flooring, what walls colours to go for and to double check that the layout was going to achieve what they wanted in their home.  I sat down with floor samples and paint samples and talked them through the plan.  After two hours they had locked in their final choices for the entire house and had the piece of mind that they were on track to achieving the home that they were imagining.  Being able to help with these ideas in the initial part of this build helped to take the stress out of the process, making it a much more enjoyable experience.

How should I choose an interior designer?

Working with an interior designer is a process, so it is important to work with someone who can not only give advice, but listen to what your needs and likes are and incorporate these into your design.  You need to be comfortable communicating with them and feel able to ask questions along the way. Everyone's needs are different, but a good designer should be able to work with your ideas.  Sometimes the answer may be "no, I don't think that is possible", but your designer needs to be able to back this up with sound reasoning, or be able to manipulate the idea into form that can be used.

Referrals are always a great way to find a designer.  Check out their qualifications and previous work, to see if their style aligns with what you are after.

What if I just want a little bit of advice?

I am more than happy to help with smaller jobs, and will normally charge at an hourly rate to do so, depending on the nature of the job.

“Thank you very much for your advice about the staining of the decks and balustrade of our house. It’s amazing how much difference the stained timber has, compared to the original grey au naturale look. We’d never stained the pine, thinking that it would require more maintenance. This will be true but the look is going to make it worth the extra effort. I’ve enclosed a few before and after pics. We were really pleased how the colour reflects the front door and tied the front of the house to the rear. It also makes the rear deck stand out more from the background which makes the house look a little bigger. Overall, an awesome result.”

                                                                                                                                                         - Helen and David

 Rear stained deck

Rear stained deck

 Balustrade before staining

Balustrade before staining

 Balustrade after staining

Balustrade after staining

 Front of the house with stained deck at rear

Front of the house with stained deck at rear

How do I go about getting a new kitchen for my home?

I will work with you to help create a kitchen space that works for you.  Once we have discussed what your needs are, I will come up with a concept plan and options for the space. I will talk you through the design and make any changes necessary to make your kitchen a reality.  Once we have settled on a layout and design, I will discuss colours and material selection, to help create the look and style you are after.  I can then supply these plans to at least two manufacturers who will supply quotes and help you to continue on with the installation of your kitchen. I also have a list of tradespeople who can help you with this process.

"Two hours. Yes two hours was all it took for Christina to design not just my favourite kitchen, but that of the entire family.  Christina carefully listened to everyone's wants, needs, likes and dislikes and with her extensive design and product knowledge managed to come up with the ideal kitchen for both myself, my husband and our three children. 

We found Christina very pleasant to work with and found her very willing to give little tips for different areas of the house when asked.  Although her dream area of design in the home is kids bedrooms, she could specialize in any area of the home with her unique eye for colour combinations and ways of maximizing each room's full potential".

                                                                                                                                                     - Janneke and Colin

“Christina helped us in designing our new kitchen. She listened to what we wanted and together we comprised a ‘wishlist’. This was then transformed into plans. The final plans took into account our budget and the individual needs of our family. Christina’s attention to detail was exceptional, both the design and colour schemes were just what we wanted.
Christina took the stress out of designing our kitchen with her friendly manner and professional approach.”

                                                                                                                                                                          - Nicola                                  © The Complete Picture Ltd 2014-all rights reserved