Don't you think you have an IDEA about interiors?

Interior Design Excellence Awards: open for entries

by Serena L. Rosato
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DESIGN_ If you have a realized "IDEA" about interiors - and it addresses sustainability issues - your project can be shortlisted for the IDEA award. 

The Interior Design Excellence Awards (IDEA) is Australia’s largest and most successful independent design awards program. Launched by Inside magazine in 2003, the program celebrates the best of Australian interior and product design across 11 categories and five special awards.

Entries are judged by a panel of design industry professionals, each of whom brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the judging process. As well as attracting submissions from some of the country’s leading architecture and design firms, the program also helps to support emerging local designers. They are associated with some of the key manufacturers and distributors within the Australian design industry. 

All shortlisted projects are published in a special shortlist edition of Inside magazine, and the full shortlist will appear on the website. Each shortlisted practice will also be invited to present their project(s) to the panel of judges on one of two presentation days in 22nd and 23rd of August. Winners are the determined by the jury, with winners announced at the IDEA Gala Party in November. In addition, winning projects and designers will be published online and profiled in a special IDEA 2014 edition of Inside magazine.




Categories : 

  • Event  - Pop-up shops, theatrical staging, exhibitions, marquees and other temporary installations-cum-event spaces are all eligible for entry into this category. While clever, readily demountable design is likely to dominate here, the manner in which it contributes to the experience of the event itself is of course absolutely key.
    All submissions to this category must also include a separate statement detailing how the project addresses sustainability issues.


  • Hospitality - Cafes, bars, restaurants and hotels are eligible for this category. Functionality and smart planning will be important considerations for the jury here, but just as important will be the ways in which designs work with the program and personality of the venue in question to deliver that all important memorable experience, drawing the clientele back for more.

  • Object-Furniture and Lighting - This category serves as a showcase of the best Australian furniture and lighting design. Work submitted to this category will be judged on form and function, however objects that demonstrate genuine innovation (be it in terms of materials, manufacturing, distribution, functionality etc) will be highly regarded. Please note student projects and/or prototypes are not eligible for this category. 

  • Public Space - This category is open to any interior design projects funded by a public body and/or that are dedicated to public use. Projects that might be suitable for inclusion here include institutional buildings such as schools, museums, galleries, libraries, churches etc. Given the wide variety of typologies this category is likely to play host to, submissions will be judged on case-by-case criteria with regards to how they have acquitted their stated brief. In general terms, however, the projects will be judged on their ability to engage, and serve, the general public.


  • Residential Decoration - This category is all about the dressing of residential interiors and how that contributes to enhance the experience of inhabitation. Unlike the other two Residential categories, Residential Decoration is concerned purely with qualities brought to an existing dwelling by a designer who may have had little or no input into its architectural elements. The selection of furnishings, both soft and hard, colour, surfaces, and fixtures and fittings are all of key importance here.

  • Residential Multi - This category relates exclusively to designs for multi-unit residential complexes, ie interior designs that apply to more than one dwelling. Much like the Single Residential category, spatial planning and programming and its relationship to the ‘look and feel’ of the design are critical. Importantly though, the design will also be considered with regards to the strictures of multi-unit, template based design. In this respect, attention will be paid to qualities of modularity and economy of construction, and how the design contributes to the rationing and exploitation of space and the provision of amenity. Absolutely essential to this will be an understanding of how the design reflects its target market demographic.


  • Residential Single - This award recognises excellence in the interior design of a single dwelling. Qualities under consideration include spatial planning and programming and its relationship to the ‘look and feel’ of the design. The selection of fixtures, fittings, hard and soft furnishings etc comes into play here, but the handling of space, light and structure is also of key concern. Hence, designs that have been dealt with in this respect as a totality (architecture and interior) will be highly regarded. Single apartments, townhouses, terraces and standalone dwellings are all eligible.


  • Retail - Submissions to this category should be retail fitouts that demonstrate a good understanding of all the things that contribute to making a shopper’s visit to a store a memorable one (and, of course, a profitable one for the store in question). Product display, the translation of the brand in the design, the experiential qualities of the space and efficient planning all come into play here.


  • Workplace – over 1000sqm - A category for large commercial office designs, over 1000sqm in size. Key considerations here include how a commercial fitout has been designed to enhance the efficiency of the workplace not just from the perspective of user productivity, but also with regards to comfort and happiness. Also of interest here is how the design relates to the brand and ethos of the company, and whether it contributes to strengthen or improve its workplace culture.


  • Workplace – under 1000sqm - This category for the smaller, more bespoke office solutions, under 1000sqm in size – with often concomitantly more tightly constrained budgets. Nevertheless, the considerations at play in this category differ little to those for Workplace –Over 1000sqm.

Images © Interior Design Excellence Awards (IDEA)

    • Serena L. Rosato

      Serena L. Rosato


      Bari / Italy

      Architetto per vocazione, web writer per diletto. Progetta spazi e costruisce idee giocando con pixel e inchiostro, occhi curiosi e delicata ironia. Attenta ai dettagli e distratta dalle novità, costantemente alla ricerca della bellezza delle cose. Dichiarata dipendenza da viaggi, musei e scarpe. ____________________________________________________________ Architect by vocation , web writer for pleasure. She designs and builds spaces ideas playing with ink and pixels, curious eyes and de)