Why Interior Design for the Metaverse is the Next Big Thing

The interest in interior design education and as a career has declined in the last decade, however the need for new designers is about to explode. Here’s why!

It’s true that interest in interior design has declined due to changes in the job market, economy, and cultural values. The public perception of interior designers has changed, and the potential for designers to use their valuable skills in novel ways has been become overshadowed by the stereotype of a residential decorator. The irony of this predicament is that the demand for virtual interior designers with three dimensional spatial design skills is actually expected to grow as more businesses seek virtual experiences for customers.

Let’s Talk About the Interior Design Field and the Need for New Designers

Some folks in the interior design industry have been warning about a shortage of interior designers in the near future, and if you look at the drop off in the interior design education boom of the 2000s it’s easy to see why. Of course, the need for interior design services across the globe can vary greatly and depends on several factors, such as country, region, culture, and economic conditions. However, in general, the demand for interior design services has been growing in recent years, as more people are investing in home improvement and renovation projects.

With the rise of home-based work and remote learning, many people are spending more time at home and as a result are becoming more interested in creating comfortable and functional living spaces. This interest actually paves the way for an increased interest in interior design careers and education. You only have to look at the popularity of these topics on Pinterest to know that interior design is wildly popular!

So, if broad interest in interior design topics are going up, why aren’t more people studying interior design?

A Strange Predicament: More Interest in Interior Design, Less New Designers

One reason why there is a dichotomy between the interest in interior design and the number of people getting an interior design education might be that many people only discover their interest in interior design later in life. There are several reasons this happens. For one, many people may not have been exposed to the field of interior design during their formative years, and may only become aware of it as they start to spend more time at home and become more interested in creating beautiful and functional living spaces.

Another reason is that some people may have pursued careers in other fields before realizing their passion for interior design. Yet others may have been unaware of interior design as a viable career option when they were students, and may only discover it later in life through exposure to design media, friends or family who work in the industry, or personal home improvement projects. The desire to create well designed spaces can also emerge later in life as people settle into their homes, start families, or enter into retirement.

Whatever the reason, it’s never too late to pursue an interest in interior design and to develop the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in this field.

Too Late to Become an Interior Designer? -10 Lessons I Learned

How the Interior Design Industry is Evolving to Include the Metaverse

It’s also worth noting that the design industry, including interior design, is expected to continue growing in the coming years, providing more opportunities for professionals in this field. One of the ways that interior design skills are going to be needed in a big way and very soon, is for virtual interiors for the coming Metaverse. Now before you roll your eyes, I know what you might be thinking.

What Metaverse?

It’s true. We keep hearing about the metaverse, but it hasn’t really become mainstream yet.

You might even wonder who these designers are who are working on Metaverse projects and what are they building?

I’m glad you asked. If you aren’t around people who are involved in tech, it’s easy to brush off the idea that the metaverse is ever going to affect your life, and it might be hard to believe that there are actual jobs in the metaverse. I’m here to change your mind.

Understanding the Metaverse and its Relationship to Interior Design

So what is the metaverse? The metaverse is kind of a catch all term that refers to a growing virtual world that is immersive and interactive, allowing users to engage with digital content in a manner similar to real-life experiences. The game worlds that many of us spend much of our time in already are the earliest iterations of this idea.

In fact, the very near future of humanity will likely be impacted by the metaverse in several important ways:

  1. New forms of entertainment and social interaction: The metaverse will offer new and immersive forms of entertainment and social interaction, allowing people to engage in virtual experiences and socialize with others from around the world.
  2. Increased virtual commerce: The metaverse will provide new opportunities for virtual commerce, including the buying and selling of digital goods and services. This could revolutionize the way people engage in commerce, reducing the need for physical storefronts and enabling new forms of business.
  3. Remote work and education: The metaverse will allow for new opportunities for remote work and education, enabling people to attend virtual classes, conferences, and meetings, as well as collaborate with colleagues from around the world.
  4. A new paradigm for creativity and innovation: The metaverse will provide a new canvas for creativity and innovation, allowing people to bring their ideas to life in new and immersive ways and potentially leading to new breakthroughs in a variety of fields.

The metaverse has the potential to change many aspects of daily life and to provide new opportunities for human connection, commerce, education, and creativity.

It’s hard to believe, until you think about how long we’ve had smartphones, and what life before them was like. In the same way that smartphones have become indispensable tools that we use around the clock, the metaverse, too, is going to allow for all sorts of new ways of working, creating and being entertained. Ten years from now, we might struggle to remember what life was like before the arrival of virtual and augmented reality.

But how does this affect the need for interior designers and interior design services?

Bear in mind that just like interior spaces in our physical world, the entertainment, social interaction, virtual commerce, remote work and education that takes place in the metaverse will all require the creation of new virtual spaces.

Who do we imagine is going to build these?

Some will be built by game designers and architects who already work in the technology sector, no doubt, but many more will be planned and built in virtual formats by designers with interior design skills. As artificial intelligence enables the faster creation of this new virtual world, so the need for new interior designs within it are going to increase.

The Three Dimensional Internet is Coming

Here’s a fun fact: Did you know that many experts believe that the future of websites is 3D? The version of the internet that we use now is known as the 2D web, while the new internet will be mostly 3D. Instead of reading text and watching media on a page, people will experience the future web in a much more immersive way. Instead of scrolling as you shop on your phone, you might step into the virtual store. In some cases the virtual store might even mirror the brick and mortar version.

Somebody has to build these settings for these new experiences, and people with an interior design education are right for the job.

Why Interior Designers are Uniquely Qualified to Build a New World

Interior designers plan indoor spaces in the real world, but much of a designer’s work is done “on paper” i.e. virtually, long before any construction or product purchasing for real goods is ever done. Both architects and interior designers plan their building designs using computer aided design, which by it’s very definition is virtual. The only difference between these types of designs and future metaverse designs lies in how they will be experienced.

Having said that, the need for interior design skills might increase in the development of the metaverse for several reasons:

  1. Virtual environments require design: The metaverse will consist of virtual environments that need to be designed and built, much like real-world environments. This will require the skills of interior designers who are familiar with creating functional and aesthetically pleasing spaces.
  2. Attention to detail: Creating virtual environments that are convincing and immersive requires a high level of attention to detail, as users will be interacting with these environments in real-time. Interior designers with expertise in spatial design, lighting, and color theory will be well-suited to this task.
  3. Emphasis on experience: The metaverse will be an experience-driven environment, where users will be interacting with virtual spaces in real-time. Interior designers who are skilled in creating environments that are not only aesthetically pleasing but also engaging and interactive will be in high demand.
  4. Customization: The metaverse will likely allow for a high degree of customization, enabling users to create virtual environments that are tailored to their specific needs and preferences. Interior designers with expertise in creating custom spaces will be well-suited to this task.

As you can see, the need for interior design skills will likely increase as the metaverse continues to evolve and mature, as it will require designers who are skilled in creating virtual environments that are functional, aesthetically pleasing, and engaging.

Digital Twins Will Be Hot in the Future, and Interior Designers Already Use Them

What do you know about ‘digital twins’ as a metaverse phenomenon? In case you haven’t heard, a digital twin is a virtual representation of a physical object or environment, used to simulate and analyze its real-world behavior. Digital twins are set to become a big deal as the lines between virtual and real continue to blur.

In the context of interior design, a digital twin refers to a 3D digital model of an interior space, used for visualizing, testing, and refining design concepts before actual construction or renovation takes place. Sound familiar? If you are an interior designer already you understand how digital models allow designers to experiment with different layouts, materials, colors, and other elements in a virtual environment, making it easier to identify and address potential issues before they arise.

By creating a digital twin of an interior space, interior designers can work more efficiently and effectively, and can also provide clients with a more accurate representation of the final product. Keep an eye out for new ways this concept will gain momentum as people wish to duplicate items from the existing world for use in the metaverse.

How Interior Designers Can Position Themselves to Take Advantage of New Opportunities in the Metaverse

So, what if all of this sounds good and you just need someone to point you in the right direction?

What can you do to make sure you’re ready for these exciting new and emerging opportunities for interior designers?

Interior designers who are looking to take advantage of the metaverse trend can position themselves by developing the skills and knowledge necessary to design virtual environments. Here are a few steps that interior designers can take:

  1. Stay up-to-date on technology: The metaverse is an ever-evolving field, and interior designers who want to work in this area should stay up-to-date on the latest technology and trends. This may involve attending workshops, conferences, and training sessions, or engaging with online communities to learn from other experts in the field. If you’re not on Twitter, you probably should be.
  2. Learn to use virtual design tools: To design virtual environments, interior designers will need to become proficient in using virtual design tools such as 3D modeling software, virtual reality platforms, and other digital tools. By gaining experience with these tools, designers will be able to create high-quality virtual environments that are immersive and convincing.
  3. Develop a strong portfolio: A strong portfolio that showcases a designer’s experience and skills in virtual design will be crucial for attracting clients and collaborators in the metaverse. Designers should focus on creating a portfolio that highlights their expertise in creating functional and aesthetically pleasing virtual environments.
  4. Network with other professionals: Building relationships with other professionals in the metaverse community, such as developers, artists, and virtual reality experts, will be important for interior designers who want to take advantage of the trend. These relationships can lead to collaboration opportunities and help designers stay up-to-date on the latest developments in the field.

I would add that if you are new to the idea of designing for the metaverse that you should learn a bit about the subject and possibly do an experimental project to understand how designing for virtual environments actually works. Here are some resources we recommend checking out if you are interested in diving further into this fascinating topic.

Want to Design for the Metaverse? Here’s How.

The Design Guide to the Metaverse

Design and Marketing in the Metaverse

As you can see, the best way for interior designers looking to take advantage of the metaverse trend to position themselves is by staying up-to-date on technology, learning to use virtual design tools, developing a strong portfolio, and networking with other professionals in the field. By doing so, they will be well-positioned to create virtual environments in this exciting emerging sector.

If you are interested in design, I hope this has given you some reasons to think about doing learning interior design. If you happen to be a designer already, I encourage you to learn more about the emerging uses for interior design in the virtual environment. If you are curious about getting started in Web 3.0 and the Metaverse as a creator be sure to check out this popular article:

How to Get Started in the Metaverse and Web 3.0 for Interior Designers, Artists and Creatives

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