T&S Home Cover Stories

Designs for Life: ASID

Whenever you enter a space that’s perfectly suited to its function and seems to welcome you with open arms, chances are a pro from the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) was involved. Now celebrating its 40th anniversary, ASID is the oldest and largest professional organization for interior designers, with more than 24,000 members and 48 chapters throughout the United States and Canada.

ASID is a community of designers, industry representatives, educators and students that advances the profession through education, knowledge sharing, advocacy, community building and outreach. “We’re the unifying voice that brings all sectors of the profession together,” explains Kay Hagan, president of the Missouri-East Chapter. “Our goal is to demonstrate, promote and celebrate the power of design to positively affect people’s physical and psychological well-being.”

Pro designers have the training and experience to help clients tell a compelling visual story, Hagan notes. But there’s a lot more to design than paint colors and carpet samples. “Yes, we can give your home or workplace the ‘wow’ factor that really sets it apart and increases its value, but our members also focus on the total picture,” she says. “It’s our job to help protect the health, safety and welfare of people in interior environments. Using the latest evidence-based research and techniques, we create sustainable, resilient living and business environments that support happy, healthy, productive engagement with family, friends and colleagues.”

Professional-level members must pass a rigorous exam on design theory, historic styles, building construction and codes, space planning applications, and professional practices and ethics. “We receive continuing education on environmental and safety standards, sustainability, appropriate materials, technology, government regulations, design psychology, product performance and more,” Hagan says. “Each space we design takes into consideration issues such as temperature maintenance, ventilation, lighting and acoustics, as well as circulation patterns that enhance function.”

Professional designers always keep the future in mind. “We design for today and tomorrow, so the space will continue to meet your needs if you decide to age in place or expand your business,” Hagan says. ASID designers also know the products, sources, fabricators, craftsmen and artists that suit client needs. “We do all the legwork, acting as your liaison with architects, contractors and vendors.”

To honor ASID’s 40th anniversary, the Missouri-East chapter recently hosted the Design Excellence Awards Gala at Union Station, which recognized area professionals in 12 design categories. “And, as we enter our fifth decade, we’re more committed than ever to supporting research, expanding our education programs, and continuing our community service work with ASID Foundation and other partners,” Hagan says.

Interior designers are not just for the wealthy. “A design professional respects your budget, saves you time and money, and keeps you from making costly mistakes,” Hagan says. “We make the magic happen, helping you achieve the look and feel you want and bringing all the elements together with style. Next time you need a design expert, look for the initials ‘ASID.’”

Pictured, clockwise from left: Melinda Klinghammer, Heather Helms, Nancy Barrett, Kay Hagan
Photo: Sarah Gibson

[American Society of Interior Designers (ASID), now in its 40th year, is the oldest and largest organization for interior designers, with more than 24,000 members and 48 chapters throughout the United States and Canada. The organization advances the profession through research, education, advocacy, community building and outreach. For more information, call 314.459.1532 or visit asidmoe.com.]