Modern Rustic Design Book

Design Books for the Original Farmhouse

Something you may not know about me is that I used to own a bookstore. Yes, a cute little bookstore on Main Street in our mountain town. And while I love fiction and memoirs and histories, one of my guilty pleasures is sitting down on the couch while the house is quiet and flipping through design books. Next to literary fiction, home design books were my favorite books to accumulate for our store. I’ve got some favorites for you. So, get ready to make a trip to your nearest and dearest bookstore after you finish reading today’s blog post 🙂

Habitat: The Field Guide to Decorating by Lauren Liess – Lauren has a couple of other books, but this one is the one I gravitate to time after time. I’m a terrible sucker for anything that is referred to as a “Field Guide,” and that’s pretty much exactly what this book is! Divided into three parts, this guide takes you step by step through the process designers use to design homes: the first part focuses on the basic elements of design, with each chapter devoted to a specific element, such as color, light, and furniture. The second part deals with the immaterial aspects of room design, such as aesthetics and mood. The third part focuses on the unique challenges of space in each part of the house.

This is Home: The Art of Simple Living by Natalia Walton – I love keeping my home uncluttered, and the photos and ideas in this book inspire me. While minimalist, her style is anything but sterile. It’s simple but cozy, colorful, and inviting.

The Scandinavian Home: Interiors Inspired by Light by Niki Brantmark – I sort of aspire to live in Scandinavia. Since I don’t and probably never will, the town I’ve made my home in is as similar to a Scandinavian mountain town as one could find in the U.S. I love to incorporate Scandinavian design concepts into our home. This book is incredibly inspiring for this!

Modern Rustic by Emily Henson – This might be the one design book I refer to the most often. Rustic style has come a long way from the days of taxidermy hanging from a pine green wall above a stiff plaid couch (although some people still go for this look). The more modern approach to rustic utilizes touches of rustic (raw wooden beams, a barn wood-wrapped island, perhaps a touch of plaid mixed into other lighter textiles) and more modern furnishings and color. Emily Henson offers tons of inspiration.

Minimalista: Your Step-by-Step Guide to a Better Home, Wardrobe, and Life by Shira Gill – More of an organizational book, Shira has created this guide for everyone regardless of how much space they have or what their lifestyle entails. Rather than imposing strict rules and limitations, Shira divides the book into five key steps: Clarify, Edit, Organize, Elevate, and Maintain, and offers open-ended and creative approaches to all of them. She makes organizing fun and easy!

Cozy Minimalist Home: More Style, Less Stuff by Myquillyn Smith – Myquillyn Smith has developed a system/method for decorating your home. It’s not something I’ve found in any other design or decorating book, and BY GOD, it works! Plus, her tone is fun and down-to-earth. You feel like you’re being guided by your best friend to create your best home. Place your furniture first, then hang drapes, place your rugs, and do NOT hang art until these other items have been arranged. She is a little militant about her method – but for a good reason! It works!

design book

Get It Together!: An Interior Designer’s Guide to Creating Your Best Life by Orlando Soria – Ah, Orlando is so funny and down to earth. He’s got a refreshing, irreverent tone and makes not only looking at the great and inspiring pics in his book but reading his takes on design, etc., enjoyable. Sections include “How to Throw a Dinner Party for Like No Money” and “Begrudgingly Hosting a Guest” and my favorite, “How to Make Non-Garbagey Flower Arrangements.” Love him!

And in the new year, I’d love to get my hands on a few others that have been getting great reviews, including Shades of White: Serene Spaces for Effortless Living by Fifi O’Neill, House Story: Insider Secrets to the Perfect Home Renovation by Jasmine Roth, and The Interior Design Handbook by Frida Ramstedt.

Got any design books you love and weren’t listed here! Please share them in the comments!

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