September 27, 2017

9 Apps Designers Can’t Live Without

9 Apps Designers Can’t Live Without

We live in a time that’s ruled by technology and, while regularly powering down to recharge is a welcome necessity, those technological advances have become essential to the everyday success of our business. Although a great deal of our time is spent meeting with clients and experiencing design elements in person, we can’t deny the ease and accessibility of a smart phone, and we’re here to share the 9 apps we couldn’t fathom living without!

Marie Flanigan Interiors Favorite Apps


1. Benjamin Moore Color Capture

A hue happy moment can be discovered in the most unexpected places, which is why I LOVE the Benjamin Moore Color Capture App! Happen upon that perfect shade of blue? Snap a picture and the app will tell you which Benjamin Moore paint color matches up most closely.

Benjamin Moore Color Capture

Expert Tip: Lighting drastically affects color, so be sure you account for that when you’re snapping away!

2. Pinterest

From tried and true recipes to nonstop design inspiration, who doesn’t love the mighty world of Pinterest? Another cool fact? Pinterest is an awesome way to collect and organize all of that inspo for upcoming design projects. Scroll around online, pin something that speaks to you, and revel in the ease of pulling up that photo for reference later!

Expert Tip: If you don’t already have one, consider creating a Pinterest board for any renovation or new construction concepts that catch your eye! When clients share their boards with me it’s a priceless look into their personal sense of style that helps guide the entire design process. 



We adore boards from architecture and design gurus like McAlpine which are always chock full of incredible inspiration!

3. FaceTime

Many of my clients are building second homes or relocating to a different part of the country. FaceTime allows us to communicate on a regular basis and it feels like we’re sitting in the same room! When I’m selecting finishes, fabrics, or furnishings, we jump on FT and I can show my client exactly what we’re planning to purchase without them having to make an unnecessary trip. It’s way more efficient than drafting a lengthy email and I’ve found that, when we’re on a call face-to-face, details are less likely to get lost in translation.

4. Lightroom

It would be nice if life was picture-perfect 24/7 , but we all know there are moments when even the most beautiful photo could use a little retouching. That’s where Lightroom comes in! With similar capabilities to the original software program, the app allows you to enhance images in a variety of ways, ensuring that every picture you snap looks and feels professional.

Lightroom Marie Flanigan

5. Dropbox or GoogleDrive

Whether you use Dropbox or Google Drive, a cloud-based file system is a necessity if you’re working on the go. Our team uses Dropbox and we love that all of our files live in one place and that they automatically sync and save. Added bonus: it’s a breeze to pull up items lists, concept boards, and photos while on site or in meetings with a client!

6. Houzz

Houzz is an incredible resource! Not only do I upload my latest projects for potential clients to see, but the wealth of design knowledge being shared on Houzz is priceless! An additional perk is that many of the photos are shop-enabled, so if I discover a piece I’ve simply gotta’ have, I can locate the source and place my order in a flash!

Arizona Tile Houzz

Loving this kitchen inspo courtesy of Arizona Tile

7. Canon Camera Connect

Our industry is highly image-driven, and capturing clean, crisp photos is vital to our business. We aim to share the most current content via our blog and social media platforms, and love sharing behind-the-scenes sneak peeks with our followers. While iPhone photos are good in a pinch, nothing beats a high-quality photo taken on our Canon. Fortunately, cameras have come a long way and many are capable of syncing up with your phone. The Canon Camera Connect App is super user-friendly, allows us to shoot remotely, and we have access to our images within seconds!

8. Word Swag

Okay, the secret’s out…nobody’s jealous of my handwriting, so while I’m super envious of those social media gurus who are happily constructing the perfect script on their Instagram story, I’m simply not one of them! Hello, Word Swag! They’ve got SO many handsome fonts and colorways to choose from and they’re constantly refreshing their offerings.

Word Swag Marie Flanigan Interiors

9. Instagram

While this may seem obvious, Instagram is one of the most important apps in the design industry, and it’s one that we obviously use every single day. It serves as a place where creatives can connect and share ideas, and it’s actually a fabulous place to meet clients, vet potential vendors, and share your work with design-savvy individuals around the world!

Marie Flanigan Interiors Favorite Apps

Which apps do you use to keep your life running smoothly!? Drop us a note below!


Join the Conversation

  1. Mary T says:

    I’m trying out Lightbox for the first time and loving it. Thanks for the great advice!

  2. These are great recommendations! Can wait to try Word Swag and Canon Camera Connect. I love using Google’s Snapseed for photo editing and also one of my favorites is Asana App for team mgmt.

  3. Nicole says:

    Pinterest…the single reason I need more hours in the day!! So many great ideas out there and so easy to use!!

  4. Kelley says:

    Hey Guys, great post. I love and use most of these but yesterday I could not download the Benjamin Moore color capture app due to IOS problems with BM. Today, I cannot even locate the app within the app store. Any suggestions? I made sure my ios was updated so I’m confused.

    • marie says:

      Thank you Kelley! I am so sorry to hear that! Have you tried since this message? We double checked on our IPhones and everything looks to be working. I’m so sorry you are having issues!

  5. Terri Maurer says:

    Good picks, Marie! There are so many apps available today for designers that weren’t around as recently as five years ago. “Technology” for designers no longer just means CAD. Those who don’t embrace technology will find themselves left in the dust of those who do.

Follow us @marieflaniganinteriors for a daily dose of inspiration

Innovative design. Exceptional service.

We blend poetry with purpose, revealing the beauty of home.