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What is Interior Design Software?

Article Details
  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 15 October 2017
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2017
    Conjecture Corporation
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Interior design software is software that makes it possible to create electronic layouts for any type of room, either residential or in a business setting. Software of this type allows the designer to experiment with color, furniture placement, the choice of accessories and accents, and even the scale of the pieces that are ultimately included in the design. Thanks to this type of computer assisted design, or CAD, it is possible to prepare highly detailed schematics for the design that can be presented to the client for his or her approval.

Key to many interior design software products is the ability to use the tools provided to create a 3D modeling of the space that is to be decorated. Often, the floor plan software allows the user to key in the basic specification of the space, such as the dimensions, the placement of windows and doors, and other architectural features that will have an impact on the final design. Since the rendering is three dimensional, it is possible for the designer to look at the placement and other selections from different angles throughout the process, a feature that is of great benefit when the space is equipped with more than one set of doors.

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With the basic layout of the room created, interior design software then allows the designer to begin the placement of furnishings in the room. Many sophisticated versions make it possible to call up pieces of varying period designs and try them within the space. Along with making it possible to try different designs in the space, the software also helps to identify the proper scale for each piece, making sure that the final design does not result in a room that feels closed and uninviting, due to oversized furnishings.

Interior design software also allows the designer to try different colors and patterns in the space. This can make the process of finding the ideal combination of wall color, flooring, and accent colors on the upholstery much easier to manage. Since it takes only a couple of keystrokes to change the color of a sofa or a wall, it is possible to quickly experiment with all sorts of color combinations until the ideal mix is obtained.

Using interior design software helps to shorten the amount of time it takes to come up with the right design for a customer. Since the software can move at the pace of the individual designer, it is possible to quickly consider ideas as they come along. Thus, the designer can quickly try the idea and decide it if works for the space, or if something else is necessary. By speeding up this process of trial and error, the software helps the designer manage more projects in less time, increasing the profitability of the design business.

There are even interior design software packages that can be used by homeowners who prefer to handle their own home decorating. Many of these packages are just as versatile as those used by designers, and just as user-friendly. Some software companies offer free downloads of sample software packages that can be tried for several days, allowing the end user to determine if a particular design software package is right for the needs of that user.

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