homedesign

Interior Design Software

Popular Programs Interior Designers Use

Photo: Hand sketches, from https://www.needpix.com/photo/856996/technical-drawing-architecture-project-rules-autocad-scale-work-interior-design

Photo: Hand sketches, from https://www.needpix.com/photo/856996/technical-drawing-architecture-project-rules-autocad-scale-work-interior-design

We are in a new era of interior design.

Gone are the days of painstaking, hand-drafted floor plans. Computer software allows for easy, painless drafting and visualization. Plans can be made infinitely more quickly. Innovations in design software have created a whole new world for interior designers and architects, expediting the entire design process.

Curious about what design software is out there? Read on to learn about four popular programs.

Photo: AutoCAD renderings, from https://www.pexels.com/photo/architect-architecture-blueprint-build-271667/

Photo: AutoCAD renderings, from https://www.pexels.com/photo/architect-architecture-blueprint-build-271667/

AutoCAD

AutoCAD was first released by Autodesk in 1989. CAD stands for computer-aided design. Interior designers depend on this tried and true software. This is often the first software designers learn, and it takes some effort to learn all the commands and the way the software works. Once a designer has it down, though, it makes drafting a breeze. Users can create 2D floor plans or 3D models of furniture, among other things. AutoCAD is a flexible tool that allows users to play and see many design possibilities.

Learn more: https://www.autodesk.com/products/autocad/overview

Revit

Revit is similar to AutoCAD in some ways, but there are key differences. This is the software architects and engineers frequently turn to. While AutoCAD specializes in 2D renderings, Revit is more suited for 3D renderings. AutoCAD is a drafting tool, and Revit is a modeling tool. Revit takes the drafts a step further and identifies the physical properties of the building components displayed on a rendering. Modifying drawings is easier, as Revit will automatically apply all changes to every view of a rendering. This must be done manually with AutoCAD. Revit does not allow for as much freedom as AutoCAD, however, as drafts must follow certain rules.

Learn more: https://www.autodesk.com/products/revit/overview

Photo: 3D SketchUp rendering, from https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:3d_google_sketchup_rendering.PNG

Photo: 3D SketchUp rendering, from https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:3d_google_sketchup_rendering.PNG

SketchUp

Like Revit, SketchUp is also modeling software. This means 3D models are its specialty. Users can make realistic looking models. While AutoCAD and Revit must be paid for, SketchUp offers a free web-based version. Some argue that SketchUp is a little easier to use than other programs, but it really depends on what users are using it for. SketchUp is a great tool for dreaming up design possibilities and bringing them to life.

Learn more: https://www.sketchup.com/

Homestyler

The best part about Homestyler is the price—it’s free. While professionals may want to stick to the other programs, this website is especially useful for those wanting to play around with different design ideas. It may not allow for design specifics that a contractor would need, but it gets the job done for those who simply need to visualize something. Users can even decorate with real furniture products. Homestyler also has a handy mobile app.

Learn more: https://www.homestyler.com/int/home


Design software creates exciting opportunities for interior designers, architects and homeowners alike. With visualization tools like these, the sky is the limit. Use these four programs, or one of the many other options out there, to bring design ideas from your imagination to your home.


Michaela Satterfield

James Décor Writer