The iHandy Level app.

Here’s 5 apps that make your phone an interior decorator


Need some help with your next home decorating project? Thanks to some innovative apps, you can have useful design assistance in the palm of your hand. Here’s a roundup of a few of my favorite apps to make decorating easier.

I’ve downloaded and tested each of them, and the photos shown here are actual screen shots from my smartphone. These free apps are so fun to use that you’ll find yourself playing with them even when you’re not redecorating.

Benjamin Moore Color Capture

Say you see a beautiful rose in your garden and decide you want to paint your walls that exact color. With this app, just take a photograph of the rose and you’ll get an instant color match corresponding to an actual Benjamin Moore color. You also can upload images from your photo library. Other paint companies, including Sherwin-Williams and Dunn-Edwards, have similar apps.

Paint My Wall

If you find it difficult to imagine how a new paint color will look on your walls, this app will help you experiment without picking up a brush. Upload a photo of your room, choose a color and use your fingertip to “paint” the color on the wall. Once you’re done, you can continue to change the wall by clicking on other colors.

Size Up

Developed in Israel, this app turns your phone into a measuring tape. Wondering how wide that sofa in the store is? Set your phone down at one end, hit “start,” and then move it to the other end and hit “stop.” The app calculates the distance for you. In my experience, it is best used for approximate, rather than exact, measurements. For this article, I experimented with a television cabinet that was 68 1/2 inches wide, and the app overshot it by 1 inch.

Amikasa

This Webby Award-winning app is a 3-D room designer that lets you experiment with how furniture would look in your home. There are two ways to use it. First, you can select any piece of furniture from Amikasa’s extensive library and use augmented reality to view the piece as if it were in your own room. Alternately, you can build a room from scratch, setting the dimensions and furnishing it with pieces from actual brands. You even can try different flooring and wall colors.  As you’re designing your room, you can view it in three modes — a top-view floor plan, a 3-D overview from any angle and an interactive view from inside the room.

iHandy Level (pictured above)

Hanging pictures is a snap with this longtime favorite of DIY decorators. Your phone turns into a level, complete with a bubble that moves back and forth just like a real level.