House Goals | Function
In Mary Gilliatt's book A Course in Interior Design she breaks the the planning process into four categories: function, practicalities, aesthetics, and budget. For each planning category there are a number of questions a designer should ask the client (or one should ask his or herself) prior to beginning a project.
Function focuses on how exactly the space will be used, in both the immediate future and not so immediate future. Some of the more pertinent questions Gilliatt proposes are:
1. How long do you expect to stay in the house?
2. Are there or are there likely to be, children in the household? If there are children now, how many are there and what are their ages?
3. Are there any pets, and if so, what kind?
4. What are the respective needs of each member of the household? Are these needs likely to change?
5. Where does the family usually eat?
6. How often do you entertain?
7. Where do you and your partner like to sit most, and on what? Where do you like to sit when paying bills, etc?
Asking these sorts of questions truly is paramount to the design process and actually makes the aesthetic goals of a home easier to achieve.