15 Home Decor Brands That Offer Free — Yes, Zero Cost! — Decorating Advice

updated Aug 11, 2022
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Hiring a decorator is not cheap, but that doesn’t mean you have to go it alone when it comes to your decor. Plenty of places to get free decorating advice exist. In the last decade, home retailers, in particular, have jumped at the chance to offer their customers one-on-one service (in the hopes of driving more sales). If you utilize a brand’s decor services, you can be sure they’ll recommend you buy lots of their products, but you’ll also likely pick up some good decorating advice that won’t require you to buy the whole room soup to nuts. So pick a store you’re likely to make purchases from and explore their complimentary advice. To help you with your next decorating project, here’s a list of 15 brands, stores, and websites where you can get free decorating advice.

1. Crate & Barrel

Crate & Barrel’s The Design Desk at Crate offers design services that include virtual mood boards, two-dimensional floor plans, and even photorealistic 3D room renderings. These services extend to the Crate & Kids offerings, too, where you can also enlist Design Desk pros to come up with kid’s room and nursery plans as well as curate a shoppable baby registry.

2. West Elm

Whether you prefer to meet in store, at home, or virtually, West Elm will pair you with a design consultant from their “Design Crew” at the store closest to your location. The brand also offers advice via live chat on their site.

3. CB2

Similar to sister store Crate & Barrel, CB2 offers three free services: Connect with a designer online, meet with a local store’s designer, or chat with a designer in real time for quick one-off questions. For the more in-depth options, according to the website, CB2’s designers will “take cues from your personal style to guide you through color palettes, fabric swatches, product selections and more. Then, we’ll get to work on your mood boards and renderings.”

4. Pottery Barn

Pottery Barn and its siblings, PBTeen and Pottery Barn Kids, offer the same design service as West Elm. In fact, their designers will gladly offer product recommendations across all eight WSGC brands (Pottery Barn, PBTeen, Pottery Barn Kids, Williams Sonoma, Williams Sonoma Home, West Elm, Rejuvenation, and Mark & Graham), meaning you have tons of styles to choose from as you build your room schemes. WSCG brands can also advise you on your holiday decor, too, for free, both indoors and outside, if that’s of interest to you as well.

5. Serena & Lily

If your taste leans coastal, Serena & Lily offers in-house free design services, which can be accessed by phone, email, or video chat, and includes personal consultations. You can expect mood boards, room plans, and swatches to come from said consultations.

6. Ethan Allen

If you have a specific design problem, Ethan Allen has a roster of design experts that offer free advice to “help you with a single piece, a room, or furnish your entire home.” You can tap into their network in person at your local store or via their live chat feature. 

7. Kathy Kuo

This eponymous e-retailer is known for pairing its commerce with relatively affordable e-design services. If you’re located in the tri-state area though, Kathy Kuo Home offers free one-hour consultations before charging for their advice. 

8. Design Within Reach

If your tastes skew more high-end modern, Design Within Reach offers a host of next-level free design services, including design consultations, in-home measuring, and spatial planning. You can also expect lifelike, a 3D renderings of your rooms that’ll help you pull a space together in no time flat.


IKEA’s kitchen planners are the unsung heroes of Big Blue. IKEA offers free kitchen planning consultations (in-store or online). These pros know the ins and outs of the brand’s offerings, so they’re sure to come up with ideas you never would have thought of yourself.

10. The Home Depot

The Home Depot also offers complimentary kitchen designing consultations. Just type in your zip code and the big box retailer will hook you up with one of their local designers, who can offer advice on everything from cabinetry to appliances.

11. Minted

If you need help crafting the perfect gallery wall, you can text Minted a photo of your wall and send screenshots of any art you want to incorporate, then a Minted stylist will send you a custom recommendation to fill out the rest.

12. Framebridge

Along those lines, Framebridge also offers free(ish) gallery wall advice, but the catch is you’ll need to be in the market for some custom framing to make it cost-free. The way it works is you pay for the consult ($99 to $199), but you’ll get that money back in a framing credit, which works out to a totally free consultation.

13. Clare

Clare Paint is already known for eliminating decision fatigue with its tightly-curated color collection, but if you are still stumped, the company’s “Color Genius” service can help you make your final picks — at no cost to you. Simply take their online quiz questions, and they’ll help you narrow down the options. 

14. Sherwin-Williams

Sherwin-Williams offers a free 30-minute consultation with one of their color experts to help you pick the perfect color for a room. Customers can choose to connect either by text, video chat, email, or phone. After the consultation, participants receive curated color recommendations, a digital color palette, and color chips sent directly to their home.

15. Apartment Therapy

If you’re reading this article, you already know that Apartment Therapy’s a great source for free decorating advice. Did you know that our very own founder Maxwell Ryan has been answering parents’ home-related questions in his weekly column for our sister site Cubby though? You can send him your queries at askmaxwell@cubbyathome.com. He answers as many as he can with a detailed, personal reply.