19 Best Home Design and Decorating Apps

Hadley Keller, Kristen Flanagan, and Hannah Martin
19 Best Home Design and Decorating Apps

Looking for the perfect vintage chair? Want to envision what a new paint color would look like in your space, without getting out the rollers? Need a floor plan for your home? Whip out your smartphone. From shopping and color planning to measuring and arranging, there's a home design app for nearly every step of the process. Now you really have no excuse to put off that renovation. Read on to discover 19 apps that will help you design a room or house from from start to finish.

SHOPPING HOME DESIGN APPS

Anyone who has ever tried to find the absolute perfect piece for a room knows that navigating all the options can be exhausting. But these apps will put a wide selection of antique, vintage, and new furnishings right at your fingertips—and thanks to new augmented-reality technology, many will let you see how the pieces would look in your space.

1. Chairish

Available for iOS; free

If you’d like to buy or sell high-quality, preowned decor, Chairish is a one-stop shop. Sellers can upload photos of furniture via the app, and then Chairish’s curators decide which items to sell. The company takes care of payment, shipping, and returns for most sales. Listing items is free, and the seller keeps 80 percent of the final sale. Buyers can look forward to finds from Knoll, Herman Miller, Christian Liaigre, Ligne Roset, and B&B Italia, among other brands.

2. Decaso

Available for iOS; free

A newer venture from the cofounder of Chairish, Decaso offers high-end furniture and decor from vetted dealers. Expect to see top-notch items from such respected names as Studio Van den Akker and Fat Chance Los Angeles.

3. Invaluable

Available for iOS; free

Browse lots from live auctions around the world without leaving your desk, armchair, or bed. Invaluable allows you to place advance absentee bids and bid in real-time at live and online auctions.

4. Hutch

Available for iOS and Android; free

This app merges the worlds of rendering and shopping, virtually outfitting rooms from photos users upload and allowing them to shop the look directly. Says Ben Broca, cofounder and head of product and technology, "Our photo technology recognizes the structure of the user's space and places products in it. It’s similar to what Snapchat filters do to your face, but for furniture shopping."

COLOR & PAINTING INTERIOR DESIGN APPS

5. Color911

Available for iOS; $4

Create and save color palettes for your next decorating project with the Color911 app. Color specialist Amy Wax has generated more than 80 downloadable color themes, but you can also create a palette based on a photograph taken on your device and organize favorite colors into folders, then share with friends or designers by email.

6. Color Capture

Available for iOS and Android; free

Spot a brilliant color while out that you'd love in your home? This app from Benjamin Moore allows you to snap a photo, and its technology will spit out suggested paint options to match it. Though some users say the colors skew dark, it's a useful starting point, and the grouped color format will give suggestions for pairing colors.

SKETCHING & RENDERING HOME DESIGN APPS

Whether you’re a professional designer or just like to approach a project like one, these apps will let you keep sketches, mood boards, and notes organized.

7. Paper by Fifty Three

Available for iOS; free

The Paper app lets users make sketches and take handwritten notes that can be combined with photos and typed text. It’s a popular tool for architects and designers such as Daniel Libeskind and Kelly Wearstler.

8. Morpholio Board Pro

Available for iOS; free for basic use and $4/month or $12/year for pro tools

Designed to make life easier for professionals, Morpholio Board Pro merges mood boards, shopping lists, cut sheets, and specs all into one app, making client presentations and project management a breeze.

MEASUREMENT INTERIOR DESIGN APPS

Who hasn’t bought an amazing piece only to bring it home to find that it’s not quite the right size—or, worse, that it won’t even fit through the door? These apps will help you make and store measurements so everything will fit correctly the first time.

9. Photo Measures

Available on iOS for $7 and Android for $5

No need to constantly carry around a tape measure; this app allows users to snap a photo of a space and write the measurements right on it. Next time you're shopping for furniture, there's no need to wonder whether the amazing piece you've found will fit. Just pull out the app for reference.

10. MagicPlan

Available for iOS; free

MagicPlan takes photos of your space and converts them into floor plans with accurate measurements. For an added fee, these plans can be exported in PDF, JPG, and DXF formats to share with contractors, designers, or real-estate agents.

11. Measured

Available for iOS; free

Lowes recently debuted this handy app, which uses augmented reality to let users measure a space or an object using only the phone's camera. Measurements can be saved for those trips to the furniture or home improvement store.

Zillow Digs App

The Zillow Digs app provides inspiration and estimates for remodeling projects.
Photo: Courtesy of Zillow

STYLING & ARRANGING HOME DESIGN APPS

Find the ideal furniture arrangement, try out art, or just get inspiration with these apps that will help you put the finishing touches on your space.

12. Rooomy

Available for iOS; free

Visualizing how new furniture will look in a space can be a challenge. With the ability to convert 2-D photos into 3-D renderings, Rooomy allows homeowners and designers to envision different configurations of art and furnishings in a specific space, with direct links to retailers when they settle on the perfect pieces.

13. Artfully Walls Try on Wall

Available for iOS and Android; free

Settling on art for your home may not always be as easy as buying what you love. Online art destination Artfully Walls helps you decide on an arrangement with its Try on Wall app, which uses augmented reality to display a preview of art you're considering hanging on your own walls.

14. Room Planner by Ikea

Available for iOS; free

Would that Billy bookcase look better in the living room or office? Now there's an easy way to see. Everyone's favorite Swedish furniture purveyor has unveiled an augmented-reality app that lets users "try on" furnishings without having to navigate through the store's mazelike aisles.

15. Art.com

Available for iOS; free

The online art purveyor's new augmented-reality app lets you see how artworks will actually look on your actual wall before you purchase them, so you know that gallery wall will be perfect.

MAINTENANCE & UTILITY INTERIOR DESIGN APPS Keep your home running smoothly with these apps that will remind you of repairs, help you with DIY tasks, or organize chores.

16. BrightNest

Available for iOS and Android; free

This app, from the company behind Angie’s List, acts as a personalized reminder system for the maintenance tasks that homeowners commonly forget (e.g., changing smoke-detector batteries). BrightNest also asks users a set of questions to determine which of its thousands of cleaning, organizing, DIY, design, and maintenance tips show up in the app’s feed.

17. Housepad

Available for iOS and Android; free

The brainchild of 1stdibs founder Michael Bruno, Housepad stores notes and visual instructions on household maintenance—shareable with family, guests, and staff. Decorators can use the to-the-trade component to catalogue a home’s furnishings.

18. iHandy Carpenter

Available for iOS; $2

Don't own a toolbox? Fear not. This handy app integrates some of a carpenter's most useful tools, including a surface level, plumb bob, and steel ruler.

FUN & INSPIRING HOME DESIGN APP

19. Design Home

Available for iOS and Android; free

If you can't get enough of home design, then you'll want to download this top-rated app on the double. True, you won't actually be working on your own home, but you'll be designing gorgeous interiors using real furniture from brands like Lexington, Article, West Elm, DWR, Brownstone, Badgley Mischka, Cynthia Rowley, and more. You'll definitely get inspired as you design living rooms, bedrooms, bathrooms, dining rooms, outdoor spaces, and more—and you just may find some stunning furniture pieces you'll want to buy IRL.

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Originally Appeared on Architectural Digest