As an interior designer I draw inspiration from a lot of different places. It could be nature, history, architecture, and even other designers. You really never know what might trigger an Aha! moment. So, I thought it might be a good idea to share a few of my go-to books that I reference during projects in the hope you'll find them helpful too. I picked these books because they aren't just filled with pretty pictures, they have a lot of information to assist you as you work through your next design project (and all of them have lots of pretty pictures).
Interior Design Master Class by Carl Dellatore
This is one of my go-to books. It's a wonderful collection of essays from 100 of the greatest designer whose styles range from traditional to modern and everything in between. This is a great book to start with when you don't know where to start. Mine is currently full of Post-it notes marking different inspiration photos for different projects I am working on. If you are getting ready to start a project, either on your own or with a designer, I highly suggest going through this book and marking the photos and essays that speak to you. You'll be surprised by the patterns that emerge.
Styled by Emily Henderson
I find myself constantly recommending this book to my DIY clients who just need help finding their personal style and translating it into their space. Emily Henderson does a great job of walking you through that process. In the end you'll have a clear idea of your style, take the guess work out of home decor shopping, and be able to purge your existing decor so that you are left with pieces that truly reflect you.
This is probably one of my oldest design books and it has definitely stood the test of time. It is basically everything I learned about color in my design classes at Drexel rolled into a simple format that will help you to feel confident when you're adding or completely changing the color scheme of a room or your whole house. I will often flip through this if I am feeling stuck on a palette for a project as there are tons color fool-proof color schemes that Ann Starmer has put together for you. It's also super helpful that the book is divided up by color and gives photos of how some of the palettes have been put into practice.
Design Sponge at Home by Grace Bonney
There is no way I could get away with putting this list together and not include this book. Especially when it's from the quintessential home decor blog Design Sponge. I turn to this book a lot because it really is the ultimate inspiration and is full of photos that will make you want to run around your home redecorating every single room. Grace Bonney does a great job of including tips and tricks on why and how the rooms in the photos work so you can pull what you like and translate it into your own spaces. There are also resources for basically EVERYTHING in the book so if you see a piece you have to have you know where to find it.
Elements of Style by Erin Gates
I added this book to the list because Erin Gates is great at giving real solutions to all the little design dilemmas that will undoubtedly come up during a project. She uses her own life and home as an example which gives the book a personal feel and invites the reader into the process. Like Design Sponge at home Erin gives tons of insight into her design decisions which helps you to translate the aspects of the designs that you lie into your own spaces.
Bonus: The Perfectly Imperfect Home
Ok I lied! There's one more and for good reason. It really is no wonder I love this book so much, this is basically my apartment in a nutshell. A random collection of mismatched items that I have either found (and by found I mean on the side of the road the night before trash day), picked up at good will, or bought off of craigslist. Some how though, it all works. It feels cozy and well-lived in and uniquely us (my husband, Michael, would be mad if I left him out and took all the credit. If you are looking to try and accomplish the same this is the book for you.
Ultimately, you are the one who has to love the spaces you live in. But if you're stuck and need more help than these books can offer, let's talk!