Designers Stories

Barbara Bell

The very first time I quoted $20K for a job, the client said yes! It was INCREDIBLE!

Barbara Bell Interiors
Tarrytown, NY

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I’d spent decades building a successful business but I was stuck in the old business practice of charging very little for my time on a job and expecting the product sales to create enough income to keep my business going. I didn’t like feeling like I had to sell furniture to make a profit.

It wasn’t until I completed 2 jobs that ended in “disaster” (clients bought everything from the internet and I earned nothing!) that I knew I couldn’t wait any longer – I had to do something to save my business.

Working with Interior Design Business Academy

joined the program and immediately began applying the flat design fee strategies right away. The very first time I quoted $20K for a job, the client said yes! It was INCREDIBLE! I then quoted $25K on the next job, and they said yes too! The best part was I started getting paid whether or not the client buys product.

So now I get all the joy of being a designer and none of the (unwanted) stress of being a ‘sales person’.


My design practice has changed considerably, $25K, $35K and $40K design fees have become the “new normal.”

Westchester Magazine contacted me about being the lead designer in a show home in the Ritz Carlton, NYC. I told the magazine I was interested but that my services were not free. I gave them a quote for my services and they accepted! Not too long ago I would have done it for free, but now I know my worth and it’s paid off tenfold!

Working with Terri and IDBA changed my business forever. I went from preparing to end my business to having the business I always wanted!