Relaxing on the beach or unplugged at a cabin in the woods, summer is the season when we make time for a good book. But instead of buying a few flimsy paperbacks, may we suggest investing in a design coffee table book to keep for years to come? Here are 10 of our favorites.
Featuring contemporary houses and cottages that are inviting and every bit as intricate as a heritage home, this book makes a case for modern interiors. Plenty of natural materials incorporated into the spaces shows just how much depth there can be to modern designs.
Vancouver-based gallery and boutique owner Heather Ross is renowned for her eye for detail. She has a knack for turning everyday objects into beautifully staged vignettes and her style tips could bring an ethereal sense of calm to even the most hectic of spaces.
Laid out by room — from entryways and hallways to workspaces — Modern Living is a how-to guide on decorating with style and personality. Full of tips on layering, hanging art and a full chapter on lighting options, it’s a practical guide to home decoration. Various styles and houses are featured so there’s something for everyone.
Products: Modern Living
If you’re yearning for an escape, try this worldly book on for size. Part travel book, part design guide, this tome profiles various creative folk living around the world and offers a peek into their private homes. A combination of interior home shots and city spaces help explain the relationship between the home and surrounding locale. Be prepared for some serious wanderlust!
Products: How We Live
If you’re looking to imbue your dwelling with some stately countryside charm, this is the book for you. Featuring historical homes and gardens, including Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello and George Washington’s Mount Vernon, the spaces are full of character and pastoral sensibility. Each house tour looks at different rooms in the historical properties and explores some of the influences behind the design choices. Perfect for day-dreaming away a summer’s afternoon.
If a ground-level garden isn’t a possibility or you’re looking for a new challenge, why not consider a sky-high garden on your roof? This stunning collection of gardens and green roofs provides floor plans, planting tips for weight restrictions, climate zone designations and plant recommendations. Take a peek inside the book
Products: Living Roofs
Have you ever loved the aesthetic of a trendy boutique so much you felt as though you could move right in? Us too. This book satisfies that urge by showing covetable shopkeepers homes, full of trinkets and pieces from their own stores, and explains how to replicate that cluttered-yet-somehow-perfectly-arranged look in your own home. Sign us up!
When you’re stuck inside on a rainy summer day, this book will transport you to sunny waterfront properties around the globe. The interiors are divided into four types — Classic, Modern, Casual and Rustic — with design tips and inspiration for any aesthetic. As an added bonus there are guides for planting coastal gardens, paint color tips and even seafood recipes.
See inside beautiful coastal homes.
Products: Coastal Living
Thanks to the country’s tropical climate, Mexican design is as much about the outdoors as it is the indoors, allowing for fluidity between spaces. For example, the pool of one house begins inside an open-sided structure with a shaded Jacuzzi-style seating area and flows out into a graded lap pool in the sun-filled garden.
Products: Casa Mexico
Sarah Richardson has distilled her impeccable taste, winning house transformations and approachable personality into her latest book At Home: Sarah Style. Reading like a greatest hits collection of her past projects — both personal and for clients — it’s a peek inside the life of Sarah. Plus, 45 of her favorite family recipes — yum!