Redecorate with the help of these iPhone apps

Jan 17, 2011
Shine

Is your decorating aesthetic ultra-modern? Cape Cod cottage? Shabby chic? Perhaps you have no clue. Whatever your taste, it never hurts to get a bit of advice from the professionals. Since decorating consultants are a pricey investment, I refer you instead to the best home-decorating iPhone apps on the market. So if you’re having trouble […]

Is your decorating aesthetic ultra-modern? Cape Cod cottage? Shabby chic? Perhaps you have no clue. Whatever your taste, it never hurts to get a bit of advice from the professionals. Since decorating consultants are a pricey investment, I refer you instead to the best home-decorating iPhone apps on the market. So if you’re having trouble deciding between the zebra-striped rug and the grizzly bear throw, consult your phone. I promise you feng shui perfection.

Nothing can freshen up the look of a room like a fresh coat of paint. But choosing a suitable color is tricky, especially when you have to factor in existing furniture. But there are several apps that will give you a sense of what that fire-engine red will look like before you break out the brushes. Both the Ben Color Capture app (free) and the Color Change app ($2.99) allow you to snap a photo of a room, and then test different shades. If you need suggestions on harmonious colors, the Ben Color Capture app includes color cards. It also includes a feature that lets you search local retailers for a specific make of paint.

Once you finish with the paint job, you’re going to need to re-hang the pictures of your grandpa. The iHandy Carpenter app ($1.99) is like a digital tool box. It includes a surface level, a bubble level bar, a protractor and a ruler. All are simple to use, and ensure you won’t put any superfluous nail holes into the walls.

Related: The purr-fect iPhone apps for pet lovers and animal advocates

If your remodel includes the acquisition of new furniture or home-decor objects, there are plenty of deals to be found on second-hand items. So take a little time, and browse through the Yard Sale Mapper app (free). Select the day of the week, and the app gives you every listed yard sale  within a 20-mile radius. Tap on one of the pins, and you’re provided with a specific address, as well as a description of the items available.

Similarly, the CraigsPro + app ($1.99) lets users browse all of its listings, including furniture and household goods. You might just find that your next-door neighbor has the exact roll-top desk you’re searching for.

If you need a little inspiration, and are aiming high in your decoration efforts, check out the Dream Home app (free). It has a feel similar to a high-end home-decor magazine — the photographs will leave you drooling.

For complicated projects, you might want to consider the addDecor app ($3.99). It helps you record and catalogue options and purchases for design projects, so you don’t lose yourself along the way.

The most comprehensive home-design app I came across was the Home Interior Layout Designer — Mark on Call app ($2.99). There’s a real feel that design is a philosophy, not just something you do to fill a room with stuff. The app helps you design and decorate using actual floor plans. It asks lots of critical questions that should be answered before any major changes are made to a room, and has a room checklist with commandments such as “go bigger — bigger is better.”

Related: Oprah’s favorite TV stars come into their OWN with these iPhone apps

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Megan O'Neil

Megan O'Neil is a journalist and freelance writer in Los Angeles. When she isn't lounging at the beach or socializing in the Hollywood Hills, she writes for the Park Labrea New/Beverly Press newspaper and the Los Angeles Times Community News Group.

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