Interior Decorating Certification and Training Programs

An interior decorating certificate program will prepare you to create a plan and execute your decorating vision for spaces of all types, such as homes, offices, stores, hotels or other indoor areas. Continue reading to learn more about the training and credentialing options for interior decorators. Schools offering Interior Design degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

How Is Interior Decorating Different from Interior Design?

Interior decorators focus on aesthetics and the visual impact of textures, color, light and furnishings. Unlike interior designers, decorators are not trained to address construction or structural issues. If you are most interested in 'dressing' a room, interior decorating could be the right choice for you.

Career Focus Color, textures, furnishings, and lighting
Common Courses Advertising, acoustics, furniture history, marketing, environmental designs
Online Environment Communication conducted primarily through email and online lectures
Certification Requirement Voluntary, but candidates may seek certification through several organizations
Median Salary (2018)$39,254 (for interior decorator)*
Job Outlook (2016-26)4% growth (for all interior designers)*

Source: *, **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Training Options Are Available for Interior Decorating?

Education options also differ for decorators as opposed to designers. Training for design is offered in the form of undergraduate degrees. While earning a bachelor's or advanced degree in interior design is a larger commitment, the credential would allow you to enter the field and then focus solely on decorating. Training that is for interior decorating only is found at the certificate level. Certificate program requirements vary from school to school, but you can expect to take between four and ten courses.

Your studies will cover topics such as lighting, acoustics, materials, specifications, textiles and furniture design. You'll learn to use a scale rule and develop an accurate floor plan. Business courses, such as marketing, advertising and planning, might also be included in the curriculum to teach you the practical aspects of a career as a decorator. Classes you may take include:

  • Concepts of interior design
  • Drawing and color theory
  • Residential and non-residential designs
  • Environmental designs
  • Fabrics
  • Furniture history and uses

Can I Earn This Degree Online?

Online certificate programs or courses for decorating are rare. Some schools do offer online interior design degrees, but they are typically for-profit schools rather than private or public institutions; check a school's accreditation before moving forward.

Online programs are conducted via the Internet, allowing you to view lectures and complete assignments on your own timetable. You'll participate in classes through online discussions and e-mail. Check with the school's technical support center to be sure you have the appropriate system and software for the programs you wish to take.

Can I Become Certified?

Many states require designers to be certified, but there are no mandatory certifications or licenses for decorators. Several organizations do offer a professional membership or designation that is tied to completion of a training program, an exam and a fee.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Vista College

    Vista College responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Vista College:

    • Associate Programs
    • Certificates

    Campus Locations:

    • Texas: El Paso
  • San Joaquin Valley College

    San Joaquin Valley College responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at San Joaquin Valley College:

    • Associate Programs

    Campus Locations:

    • California: Ontario
  • Penn Foster

    Penn Foster responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Penn Foster:

    • Certificates

    Online Programs Available

  • Penn Foster High School

    Penn Foster High School responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Penn Foster High School:

    Online Programs Available

  • Winthrop University

    Winthrop University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Winthrop University:

    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Michigan State University

    Campus Locations:

    • Michigan: East Lansing
  • The University of Alabama

    Campus Locations:

    • Alabama: Tuscaloosa
  • Iowa State University

    Campus Locations:

    • Iowa: Ames
  • University of Florida

    Campus Locations:

    • Florida: Gainesville
  • The University of Tennessee

    Campus Locations:

    • Tennessee: Knoxville