The Design Process

At Gacek Design Group, the art of interior design is a creative practice coupled with a few guidelines. The following Gacek Design Group Process outlines what you can expect when you partner with us.

I. Discovery Phase:

It is our objective during the discovery phase to carefully listen and interpret your thoughts to create a vision for your space that optimizes the way you want to live.


A Lifestyle Survey is sent to you prior to the initial meeting. It is a brief questionnaire that helps us experience how you live in your home today to include family, entertaining and lifestyle needs. It also helps to articulate your preferences in design, style and color.

Since collaboration is the key to success, we encourage you spend time thinking about your design wish list items – share magazine photos, appliance selections, designer show house photos, and colors/fabric that you prefer. You can even create a Board on or an Ideabook on This exercise has proven to be a valuable source of information for Gacek Design Group and helps us to understand your design aesthetic and deliver a thoughtful and personalized interior design.

A conference call is then scheduled, to informally introduce you to the team, to briefly review your Lifestyle Survey, and to identify the Scope of Work for the project. These are the steps we take to prepare for the initial consultation.

Initial Consultation

We will meet with you on site and conduct an in-depth interview. The initial hour consultation is typically 1-3 hours depending on how extensive the design project. Richard Gacek, Owner and Principal Designer, will lead the conversation and you will be charged a consultation fee for the following discussion:

  • Evaluating your design goals and needs
  • Reviewing your completed Lifestyle Survey and discussing how Gacek Design Group interprets your feedback
  • Touring the spaces and providing recommendations on space layout, furniture placement, potential structural changes, millwork and decorative details, as well as color direction
  • Identifying your project time frame (start date, installation date to completion date)
  • Defining your architectural needs to include additional drawings and/or special artisans/craftsman
  • Reviewing your design budget
  • Outlining expectations and goals throughout the process
  • Taking initial photos of the rooms to design

II. Proposal:

A proposal is created based on feedback from the discovery phase. The proposal will give you a snapshot of what you can expect from the total project:

  • Scope of work – a narrative per room total of recommended design direction
  • Total number of anticipated design fees
  • Review of timeline
  • Review of retainer
  • Review of fee schedule

An invoice for the Initial Consultation will accompany the proposal. If you decide not to move forward with the project, payment of the invoice for services rendered is expected.

III. Design Development Phase

Once the proposal is signed, the initial consultation fee can be applied to the retainer. When the retainer amount is received, Gacek Design Group begins the design process. Every project is carefully researched to create a story that is authentic. This practice always delivers exclusive and elegant interiors that are meaningful and based on our client’s lifestyles.


Gacek Design Group identifies the overall design concept keeping in mind functionality, adaptability, flexibility and comfort of your personal design space. Richard and the design team begin to sketch/visualize your design concept and develop the inspiration for the Design Plan:

  • Design a space plan
  • Design a furniture plans
  • Ensure appropriate scale and proportion of furnishings
  • Measure space dimensions if applicable
  • Measure and catalog existing furniture, art pieces, etc. that may be used in the new space
  • Sketch concept drawings, renderings
  • Review space layout


Gacek Design Group believes successful design evokes an emotional response. The creative process is where we blend natural elements with timeless and classic design. Gacek Design Group is mindful of the value of an experience, creating a personal story for every client that is authentic. This is articulated through your Design Plan:

  • Select paint and wall covering
  • Consider specialty finishes
  • Source furnishings, art, lighting, rugs and accessories
  • Source fabrics and order samples
  • Create material specifications including furniture details
  • Design and work with our fabricator to create and custom  window treatments, soft goods
  • Collaborate with artisans on specialty items and finishes
  • Design and outline millwork detail
  • Develop working concept drawings
  • Create and present Design / Color Boards where various interior design elements are displayed with photos, sketches and samples: paint swatches, fabric samples, finishes, flooring, cabinetry, countertops, wall and window treatments, lighting and hardware; all illustrated to help you visualize the interior design

Purchasing – Estimate of Proposed Items

Once the Design Plan is approved and a budget is finalized, Gacek Design Group prepares itemized proposals outlining costs. All proposals are sent to you for approval. Once the required deposit is received, we purchase the items. Please note that all procurement for your project is contingent upon receipt of the requested deposit.

When working with trade partners, (contractors, artisans, etc), we require an estimated bid as well as a project timeline. At Gacek Design Group, we feel it is important for our clients to collaborate directly with the trade partners to ensure project costs are illustrated and understood. Once the bid is presented to you by the trade partner and you approve, the project will proceed.

  • Specify all items / materials by location
  • Collaborate with artisans / trade partners on scope of work, get estimate
  • Present proposals of selections / work for final approval
  • Receive deposits from client for items to be procured / work to proceed (procurement is contingent upon receipt of the requested deposit)
  • Take detailed measurements – once proposals are accepted, a follow-up consultation in your home is established for evaluating the existing conditions
  • Refine a complete set of working drawings for accuracy, style and code requirements (if applicable)
  • Meet with trade partners to monitor the details

IV. Implementation Phase

The implementation of the project begins with sign off on the proposals/trade partner estimates and receipt of deposit.

Tracking and Monitoring

Gacek Design Group creates purchase orders and places the orders with trades/manufacturers on your behalf. We have a follow-up process in place to monitor all orders. We will also coordinate efforts with the trade partners. We follow the process with design timelines to ensure completion of the project.

Gacek Design Group monitors the critical path by scheduling visits on site; conducting status meetings and scheduling design walks. Our goal is to make sure that the Design Plan is delivered as promised.

  • Receive acknowledgements on all purchased items
  • Follow up on all deliveries, track lead times
  • Alert to back orders, determine if re-selection is necessary
  • Determine what pieces require freight; if storage necessary based on any revisions that may take place to the timeline
  • Inspect custom-made pieces like furnishings, cabinetry, window covering


At this phase in the process, a customized Design Image Folder is presented to keep you visually updated on your design project. The folder will provide all of your design and material selections to ensure that our interpretation of your needs meets your expectations and is well represented.

  • Conduct on-site visits, and showroom visists
  • Schedule shopping for unique and one of a kind pieces (local boutiques, antique and speciality stores)
  • Schedule status meetings, conference calls for project follow up


Gacek Design Group takes the leadership role throughout the design process and strives to build a cooperative and accommodating partnership. We are selective with the partners we choose and align with those that are reputable, professional, courteous, and experienced in their field.

  • Coordinate with trade partners and monitor progress throughout the process

V. Installation and Evaluation Phase

At this point, Gacek Design Group has coordinated the project for completion of millwork, painting, flooring; installation of lighting; coordination of wallpaper and specialty finishing for your home. As the furniture and décor begin to arrive, the delivery and installation of furniture, soft goods, art and accessories takes place and the design style comes to life.

Throughout this process, it is our goal to install over consecutive days vs. phases so that you may experience living in your new home through one introduction.

A final walk through with the Principal Designer is conducted. Any feedback you provide and communicate at this point is deemed valuable information. Any punch list items as well as damages are addressed and completed. Since we are proud of every interior design project we complete, we would also encourage you agree to a complimentary and professional photo shoot of the space.

VI. Post Project Added Value

As an option to the process, Gacek Design Group would like to extend the offer to co-host a Housewarming Event in your honor. We will co-coordinate a social gathering at your home to introduce the new interior design to your network of friends and family. We will arrange the event at the project location and will provide catering for a cocktail-type atmosphere.


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