Essential Apps for Interior Designers

The bare minimum essential apps for running an interior design business.  Don't get too bogged down in what you should be using!

The title of this article is a bit of a misnomer because there are very few applications that you need to run an interior design business.  Somewhere a few years ago, I stopped adding and started simplifying.  This was a conscious effort to stop looking for the best way to run my business from external sources to start developing the best way to run my business by looking inside my business.  

Simplicity and focusing on what really matters is what will make your business run smoother.  By not cluttering up your process with various applications and subscriptions, you can give your attention to the work that needs to be done, not the app you should use to get it done.  

That said here are some of my favorite apps for running an interior design business.  

Pinterest:  When you want to convey a visual idea, the best way to do it is visually.  And Pinterest allows you to do that.  I use this to create design schemes for clients, have clients communicate their style to me, and provide design details to subcontractors.  Of all the apps on the list, this is the one I use the most in my business.   

Evernote: Evernote is a bit like Pinterest for your life.  All the papers, sticky notes, receipts, ideas, bookmarks can be stored in the cloud and accessed from multiple devices and makes them all searchable.  The Penultimate feature allows you to create a handwritten/sketch notebook experience on your iPad. Evernote is a great way to store client documents, project inspiration, notes, and drawings in one handy spot.

iHandy Level: This one surprised me that it came in so... handy.  I usually have a level in my designer toolbox, but I don't always carry the entire toolkit with me.  This level has helped me on several occasions.  

Magic Plan:  This is truly a magic plan, you take a picture of your room and the app measures for you and creates a floor plan.  This is an app I would really like to use more often, but I'm so used to my trusty laser measurer  I usually don't remember to use Magic Plan until I'm done.  This is one that stays on my device.  

Color Capture:  Take a photo and this app matches it to a Benjamin Moore color.  I primarily use Benjamin Moore paint, but this is an app I had for awhile but never used.  I just don't pick paint colors this way.  But that's not to say that you won't!  If you want a color picker/matcher this is the way to go.  You can also try the Sherwin Williams or Pantone versions.  

Next steps: 

  1. Share in the comments your favorite apps that aren't on my list.
  2. Download one or two of the apps above to see if you want to incorporate them into your business or if you already have them, try incorporating them into your business more. 
  3. Enter the giveaway for my favorite hand-drawing books or if you just want to check out the best CAD programs for designers.  
  4. Don't miss next week, when I delve into the best project management software for designers.  

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