Whether you’re looking to completely revamp your apartment’s living space or simply want to freshen up a few pieces of your home décor, your phone can offer the insight and inspiration you need to nail the look you’re going for – all for much less than what an interior designer might cost.
You can also use your smartphone to measure, choose a paint color, arrange your furniture and find the perfect pieces. These apps offer all the tools you need to give your apartment a fresh look.
Houzz and Pinterest
If you need a dedicated space to keep all your design ideas in one spot or you’re looking for apartment-specific inspiration from other people, start with Pinterest and Houzz. You can snap photos of pieces you like to add to your “board” or “ideabook,” or use the “Visual Match” recognition tool to find a specific product featured in an image.
Unlike Pinterest, Houzz is dedicated entirely to the home. The “View in My Room” feature lets you virtually place a piece of furniture in your room, and the 3D option of this feature uses augmented reality to view the piece from all angles through your smartphone, as if it’s actually there.
The HomeStyler app shows you how furniture looks in your room before you buy it, but rather than just one piece at a time, it lets you create your whole room (including rugs and paint color). Take a photo of your space and the app measures the room’s dimensions, allowing you to use 3D augmented reality to add items and furniture to see how they look and fit.
If you plan to buy furniture online, these tips and tricks can help you find the right pieces.
Color Capture and Color Snap
Color Capture from Benjamin Moore and Color Snap from Sherwin Williams help you find the right paint color the first time. If you’re using Color Capture, take a picture of a wall or object featuring a color you like, tap the color in the picture and the app will tell you which Benjamin Moore paint color matches it.
Sherwin Williams’ Color Snap app also offers this feature, plus you can use augmented reality to virtually apply any paint color to your own walls.
Measured is a simple but effective app from Lowes that turns your phone into a digital tape measure and lets you take pictures of your space with the measurements superimposed over the image. For example, if you want to measure the space over your mantlepiece, simply:
- Open the app
- Position your phone’s camera over your start point
- Tap the “+” button
- Move the phone to the end point
A line displaying the distance in feet and inches will appear, and you have the option to save the image for future reference.
Finally, there’s an app that will do everything for you. One of Elle Décor’s 10 must-have apps for decorating, Havenly is from an online interior design firm of the same name. Havenly pairs you with a designer based on your tastes, lets you chat online with them for free and offers the option to upload photos for your designer to comment on. Packages range from $29 to $169 depending on the number of rooms you’re redecorating and any additional options you chose.
Redecorating can be a fun but stressful project. From paint colors to furniture, these apps can help you chose the perfect look to suit your personal tastes.
Jennifer Pattison Tuohy is a freelance writer and contributor for Xfinity Mobile. She writes about green living, mobile phone technology, consumer tech, and small businesses for a variety of newspapers, magazines, and online publications.