Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Interior Design, Building and Other Fabulous iPad Apps

I had a wonderful weekend playing around with an iPad 2, thanks to Vodafone, who gave me the opportunity to review one for a few days. I hightailed it to the iPad app store and started fluffing around looking for house design apps. What a treasure trove! 

First stop was the 'Houzz' app…..over two hundred thousand beautiful, inspirational interior images. There are links to products, professionals and ideabooks put together by professional designers (architects, interior/ lighting/landscape designers..... just to name a few) and you can create your own virtual ideabook too! Once you get into it, some of the images have interactive tags, which detail product specifications and links to the product manufacturer’s international website. 

Down the rabbit hole I went!

Next up was the 'Remodelista' app.. all that’s new and noteworthy in the home design world. You can view Remodelista’s daily content with a simple swipe of the finger. All their archives are available as well as lists of products associated with each post. Oooh, the images are so crystal clear. I’ve really gotta get me an iPad. Pronto.

I stumbled upon the ‘Home Design 3D’ app, an interactive floor plan design platform. This one really got my heart racing. You can create, layout, design and visit the home of your dreams. Drag and drop any object (windows, doors) or piece of furniture by dragging your finger across the screen to create a 2D drawing and then view it in 3D. 

Change the wall colours, floors, ceilings, colour of the rugs, anything. You drag everything….with two hands, one need to manually type in any dimensions. 

‘The Jetson’s' never knew how good it really was going to be in the year 2011did they?  I stopped for a minute and thought to myself, am I really doing this? … creating something in 3D, spinning it around, changing elevations and dimensions with such ease? I thought back to my uni days, in the early 80’s, when an assignment was marked down if it was not handwritten and when the only computer was in the librarian’s back room for her use only…. how personal computing has come such a long way in my short lifetime and I get to enjoy it all now!

You can watch a demonstration on the magic of the Home Design 3D iPad app HERE. View it and I guarantee you will be whispering just like I was...."oh, I gotta get me an iPad".

Ooooh I also stumbled upon 'Moodboard'... as it says, "the perfect app for organising things that inspire you". You can create a moodboard from a blank canvas, adding photos, diagrams, text, swatches and images from anywhere .... perfect for home decorating projects, planning a renovation, or a build!... or even planning your perfect holiday... wedding... or 'life goals' board or 'vision' board.

Look, I even worked out how to do an iPad screen shot!
You hold down the power button and the iPad button at the same time. 
The screen flashes white and the screenshot is saved to your photos.

One of the programs that comes with the iPad is ‘Newsstand’, a direct portal to popular magazines. Click on your favourite mag and it gets added to your virtual library shelf. When you click on your favourite shelved magazines you are taken directly to the magazine’s iPad store in order to purchase whatever virtual magazine issue your heart desires. It's so much cheaper than a newsagent!

Ok, and for you DIYers out there, check this out!
This app, 'Sight Level', enables you to turn your Vodafone iPad2 into a virtual laser level. Your virtual tool belt just got handier! No excuses for leaving your tools at home. If you're on site, working from your plans on your iPad, your tools are built in! It gives a precise digital readout too.

Ok, so then I got seriously side tracked and started searching for Paris stuff.  I found the ultimate Paris app....'Paris 2GO'.

Say for example, you are heading out to the Palace of Versailles for the day (like we did on the blog last Sunday, in my 'Sundays in Paris' post)..... you get a history lesson.....

... you can call up a Metro map....and one that doesn't have creases all through it and tears on the creases (you know the drum).....

... and then you can go in for the big kill and get a monstrous history lesson.... on everything....
.... enough to inspire you to go back to your Paris apartment and watch the 2006 'Marie Antoinette' movie, starring Kirsten Dunst... as I did. Twice.

Ok, so I could waffle on for ages about all the wonderful apps out there. I sort of have. This was a dangerous exercise because now I know what I have been missing out on. 
I am seriously getting myself an iPad for Christmas. It’s for a good cause…….right?

Vodafone have a range of tablets available and they have a deal going at the moment where you pay absolutely nothing up front ($0), just like the phone plans. For only $45 per month, you get 1.5 GB of data to use each month! I am going to be their first campaign customer. Big Statement. But True. You can see all their plans HERE.

'Pay nothing upfront to give an iPad2 as a Christmas gift with Vodafone' - great idea I reckon.

Do you use an iPad for your blogging? What are your favourite apps? Is there an exterior house design app out there?....for pulling together house elevation ideas?.....where I can click and drag gables, cupolas, eave returns and chimneys?.. and play around with roof pitch and stuff? My mind is ticking over about all the stuff I could do!

Hey, and thanks Vodafone, for the loan of the iPad. I'm totally sold.

Happy Wednesday!


  1. I love love love my ipad2. I do set and light designs, I can import others designs. Sketch on the spot. I take it everywhere. Down load my library books too. It takes great pictures. And FaceTime with the family. And we look up any puzzling questions I can go on and on....get one!

  2. I'm tempted...I might have to rewrite my letter to Santa! How cruel to have to give back that iPad of all people should have one. xx

  3. Ilove my ipad2 for most things, however I find that it's not quite right for blogging. I have tried a couple of blogging apps - Blogpress and Blogger Plus(both free)but I really need to explore some others.
    Writing a post is fine it's just that I can't seem to get the position of the photos right. You know it's a lazy evening on the sofa blog post when the photos are all small and squished to the left!
    I bought a little device that will download photos direct to the ipad and that was a great buy.
    I think you have probably learnt more about the ipad2 overnight that I have in a few months!
    Hope Santa brings you one.

  4. oh boy you have got my curiosity going now. Thanks for the preview I really enjoyed exploring with you

  5. Love, love, love my iPad! Will never buy another paper mag since discovering Zinio. You purchase via your iTunes account, store issues in your Zinio library & easily book mark pages for reference. The only issue is I still need to head upstairs to the PC to post as Blogger is dragging their feet in developing an App. With all your contacts surely you can put a rocket under them dear A-M. We do all our work CRM & Expenses on it as well, & I've down loaded my music library to the iPad, so I can have Jim Morrison blaring through the speakers as I'm entering data, too easy.
    Millie xx

  6. sometimes I use Mr FF's ipad. My step daughter has downloaded so many great aps for me- OPI, soundhound, fashion things. Maybe I should get my own ipad x

  7. Thanks so much for sharing. My husband recently bought me an IPad 2 for my birthday, and I am still working out how to use it.... Looks like there are a few apps here that I will have to have a closer look at tonight when the kids are in bed...

  8. How fun! I do love my iPad, so glad I bought it! :-)

  9. And zip list for grocery shopping

  10. This is my first time commenting on your blog AM. I've been reading it for awhile and just LOVE all of the beautiful images you put up. Just wanted to say, 'I love that ensuite!'. I want it for Christmas....even more than an ipad....

  11. Steve (Hubbie) bought me an iPad 2 last week. I am absolutely hooked. I bought the 3D house APP. I agree with you A-M, amazing. Mimi xx

  12. A couple of weeks ago my daughter put a passcode on the iPad and then promptly forgot it. So ours is out of action...

    TDM xx

  13. Just wanted to say thank you for such a lovely blog. I have loved visiting each day! I wish you and your family a wonderful Christmas and New Year.

  14. Oh A-M, I thought I'd told u about Houzz in a past comment? I have it on my iPhone and I get weekly newsletter updates. Whilst the iPad is bigger and more user friendly for the drawing apps, most u can just upload to ur iPhone.

  15. I also find the iPad difficult for blogging, but it is great for stalking other blogs, etc. I think I need that laser level app!

  16. Thank you thank you A-M! This amount to a much-needed tutorial - does it also mean I have to upgrade my iPad?

    Could you do more like this, but tell me story simply, as to a little child?

  17. OMG I have died & gone to heaven this house is just amazing I love it soooo much oh sorry about the space I was just spitting my dummy out as i want that house hee hee.

    Thanks for the other info AM I will be passing that on to my daughter she has simms just to create the houses, so this looks like it will be great for her to have a go at.

  18. The most exciting thing for me from this post is that now I know how to do screen shots!!! I find screen shots in my photos folder every now and again (that my kids have done) but didn't know how they did it.

    So pleased that now I know how! That knowledge will come in very handy.

    Thanks, A-M!


  19. I love my iPad. I'm actually on it now, sitting on the floor in the kitchen because all the chairs are being loaded onto the truck as I type. It is keeping me occupied and distracting me beautifully from all the dirt that is being revealed as the house is getting emptier!
    Clare x

  20. Hahaha, why does this blog post not surprise me at all!? You really have been missing out A-M. Get yourself an iPad 2 right now, you must have one. I couldn't live without mine. Perfect Christmas gift!

    Have a lovely day,

  21. I use my ipad all the time to surf blogs, but not to post. I need pics etc sorted on my pc! BTW that first - that's mine. *smile*

  22. You must get an iPad. I couldn't live without mine - it goes everywhere with me and is always in the kitchen. I can check emails, grab a recipe, read a blog and sort photos, all while I cook dinner. I love Apple and have a Mac, iPad and iPhone that all work beautifully under the iCloud. Having just bought a 'renovator' I will now go and download some of your recommended apps - that should get me started!

  23. Hi AM great blog entry ... Divine house and ensuite. All the reader comments were fab too re the apps etc for the iPad2

    We got one recently; I still use my iPhone a lot more though for obvious reason I guess.

    We just cashed in some frequent flyers with Amex for it. Think it was 120,000 points or so. My husband didn't realise til I told him that's about Syd - Lon return.

    Can imagine u in a cafe surfing away on an ipad2!

    Lou ; )

  24. Oh good LORD i want one & i don't really like technology. So it would be perfect for designing a home, it looks brilliant??!! Pays for itself if it's your very own agreeable architect. Hmmm, i'm going to check this out, you are quite the sales guide me lady, love Posie
    I'm only keen as my high schooler is on holidays 10 days before her public school siblings & we could bond over this next week!!


Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to leave me a comment. I love hearing from you. A-M xx