Generally speaking, people who want an interior design consultation either a] just bought a house or condominium, and need help turning it into their home; or b] want to improve, update and refresh their existing home. A lot of valuable ideas and information can be shared in as little as 1 hour, especially if the tips below are considered :
1] Come prepared. Make sure you have a list of questions and concerns in priority sequence. Let your designer know in advance if you are looking for something in particular so they come prepared. For example, if you want to change the color of your bedroom, the designer will bring paint and possibly wallpaper samples.
2] Have an idea of the styles/ colors/ objects you like [and dislike]. Start a file and have it on hand as a communication tool with your designer. Buy some magazines, scour the internet and save images that appeal to you. Don't think about it too much - this should be a "gut reaction" exercise without too much analysis at first.
3] Take lots of notes including brand and company name information your designer may give you. This information is very valuable as it probably took them many hours or even years [saving you many hours !] to find these brands/ suppliers/ contractors etc. and to research their competency/ reliability/ quality/ etc.
4] Determine some sort of budget for what you are trying to achieve. This will help the designer narrow down the choices for you, and propose things that are suitable.
5] Know your schedule and share this with the designer. Are you the type of person who wants to start a project quickly and get it done asap? Or do you prefer to take your time and think about all the options, sometimes spending 6 months to work on an overall design plan? Let your designer know your expected timeline, so they can advise you accordingly.