Study ...

Dear friends... If you would be so kind, I need your advice...
My new years resolution was to stop studying my Masters and instead study interior design/decorating... finally, after all these years I have given myself permission!
If I am to move out of the medical world I need to be a credible decorator, so I am striking while the iron is hot!

So, the advice needed is which course do I choose?
I don't need or have the inclination to do another university degree, rather I am interested in a short course for a diploma by correspondence... does anyone have any tips for me?

Your advice would be much appreciated xx

Photo Here


  1. Hi Emma.

    I made the same resolution this year. I'm starting a cert iv in interior decoration at tafe (in Adelaide)& will go on to the diploma if I want.

    It was a toss up between that & a bachelor of interior architecture at uni. To be honest I couldn't deal with doing another degree and my interior focus is on decorating existing spaces & residential which is what the tafe course covers.

    The degree is more architecture based and commercially orientated. My friend did it & they didn't study colours, textures, furniture placement etc

    Congrats on your big decision! I think a short course like a diploma is great. Besides, in a field such as interior design I think having a good eye is more beneficial than a level of qualification.

  2. Don't know of any courses, but just wanted to say congratulations!

    I had a major career change in my life a few years back, which meant further 'top up' study. i really just hoped that i'd get by and things would turn out OK. OK was enough. I was absolutley terrified, and a little bit self limiting by it.

    Now, a few years down the track and my career is light years ahead of where i thought i'd ever get to, and it's still developing. So hope for big things, and they will come.

    What an exciting change - all the best!


  3. HI Emma,
    University expenses are high, so I would go for the option of a Tafe course or a short course. If you then want to go on to Uni, you can have your study used as a credit for some courses and therefore not pay the fees for that course and spend less time studying.

    Congrats on the decision, but keep your medical doors open. Try to keep up some part time or casual work to keep your skills up to date. It will take time to build up a good client base and reputation, until then you will have bills to pay.

    Good Luck and I really enjoy your blog,


  4. Hi Emma, Having already done the Degree and Masters in a totally different lifetime (medical, science as well), I opted for TAFE this time around. More practical... hard hats, steel capped boots (I'm doing residential drafting though)... more focussed on the job and what you really need out there in the real world. Good luck and yay for following your heart and dreams... I'm all for that.... at the tender age of 43! A-M xx

  5. Hi,I just have to say go for it girl,when you still can!!!!! Follow your heart and instincts,I am sure you´ll make it somehow.I am thinking perhaps you could be an apprentice with someone and take it form there???? It´s probalby a very good experience and will teach you a lot!!!!

  6. Hi- Would you be able to skip the education step altogether and think toward pulling a portfolio together? Ie. photograph spaces you've worked on- say, your own bedroom, your friend's living room, that sort of thing? I paid lots of money to go to Parsons in NYC but all anybody ever cared about was my book, and my skill. Just a thought! Best of luck to you!!!

  7. Hi Emma
    I'm not sure whether these guys are in Adelaide but you can now do their courses via correspondance - Commercial Arts Training College (part of a company called THINK Education). I am studying a Graphic Design course via correspondance with them but I know they do Interior Design as well (I believe it's under the banner of Billy Blue School of Design).
    I hope this helps - good on you for making the decision to change, I'm sure you'll be great at it!
    Hannah @ designnstyle.blogspot.com

  8. hi emma, take it from someone who is older and wiser. FINISH UP YOUR MASTERS. you will always have that under your belt. it will set you apart from the others along the road. anyone, at any age or stage in their lives, can call themselves a designer these days. i have a degree in design. enough said.

  9. Thankyou for all your kind comments of support and encouragement - it is lovely to hear from like minded individuals, fellow 'trapped' ones in their other lives just trying to do something a bit more fun!

    Anonymous, while I appreciate your sentiment regarding finishing my masters, I don't agree. I have 2 degrees already, both of which I knew I should have never done since my mind was clearly elsewhere. I hae no desire to spend another 2 years getting myself qualifications in a field that I'm not going to be working in... and secondly, I agree that any man and his dog can be called a designer - it's a shame really isn't it? I however, have no interest in being a professional designer, I just want to do what I have always done - throw weddings and parties, decorate rooms and make things look beautiful. Perhaps you hadn't realised that I simply didn't think I needed to get a degree in the things I have always done, and that come naturally to me?

    Enough of my venting... apologies friends... but you can imagine that coming to the decision to leave my profession is one that has been long and hard, and while I probably have to spend one more year working in it to set myself up better financially, I wouldn't change this decision for the world and am finally letting myself trust my instincts.

  10. Hi Emma, I just found your blog today while looking at Studio Home Creative's blog, and wanted to tell you how much I've loved looking through all your old posts. There are so many inspiring images and all the pug photos are adorable. My husband kept peering at the screen when I got to a new puppy picture. I think he's secretly starting to like blogs too. I look forward to keeping up with your site now that I've found it.

  11. An option I found attractive was buying, doing-up and selling. If you have the capital and fortitude, your vision remains true, you save a great deal of time not having to explain or persuade, and you make very good money! Tax advantages too if you live in it (not sure about Australian tax law though).

    Keep a really good photographic record - I didn't...

  12. Just found you, don't know you, but understand where you are at! Been there, changed careers three times and enjoy the last the best. I turned my hobby into a career. We buy restore and sell old things! SO GO FOR IT!!!!

  13. Congrats on the career change. It's never to late to reinvent yourself.

    I like the desk and chair!

  14. Hello Emma!
    Just found you blog and love it!
    I live in Brisbane and have loved decorating since I was a young girl. So this year I'll turn 40 and I wanted to do something about my passion. I've started a correspondence course as a professional interior designer with 'The Interior Design Academy' in Sydney. I've done one tutorial so far (there are 12) and it has already opned my eyes to so much I never knew.At the end of it you walk away with a diploma as a Professional Interior Designer and they are with you, right up til you find your first job. Even tho I am also more interested in the 'decorating' part of it, I'm sure the extra knowledge won't hurt me a bit :)
    Here is a link to their website : http://www.theinteriordesignacademy.com/index.asp?apg=home
    Also ... Shannon Fricke is holding a one day workshop at her cottage in Bangalow (NSW). She will be doing 4 of them this year...and if you haven't heard of her or seen her blog, you're in for a treat... here is a link : http://www.shannonfricke.com/Workshop.html
    I just know that this new path in your journey will make your heart sing!
    Kindest Wishes

  15. Really great.You have done a great job as always.I am a old viewer of your blogs and I loved all the posts.so this one is also interesting.
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While of course I appreciate your generous comments, please don't feel obliged ... just having you stop by is lovely enough!

Happy day dear friends xx