This type of firm emerged in America after the Civil War.
The Herter Brothers, founded by two German emigre brothers, began as an upholstery warehouse and became one of the first firms of furniture makers and interior decorators.
In the mid-to-late 19th century, interior design services expanded greatly, as the middle class in industrial countries grew in size and prosperity and began to desire the domestic trappings of wealth to cement their new status.
Large furniture firms began to branch out into general interior design and management, offering full house furnishings in a variety of styles.
The term is less common in the UK where the profession of interior design is still unregulated and therefore, strictly speaking, not yet officially a profession.
In 1882, the London Directory of the Post Office listed 80 interior decorators.
Interior design is the art and science of enhancing the interiors of a space or building to achieve a healthier and more aesthetically pleasing environment for the end user.
An interior designer is someone who plans, researches, coordinates, and manages such projects.
By 1915, the London Directory listed 127 individuals trading as interior decorators, of which 10 were women.
Rhoda and Agnes Garrett were the first women to train professionally as home decorators in 1874.