Fab Books for the Decorator

One good thing about birthdays, is people give you lovely gifts. In September, when I celebrated my birthday, I received three fabulous books which I can highly recommend.

New Books

The first book was very apt as it was The Stylist’s Guide to NYC. I cannot tell a lie, it was on my wishlist as we were celebrating my birthday in NYC. Unfortunately, that meant I didn’t get a chance to read it until I was back in Australia. However, I had read an excerpt from the book in a magazine and diligently wrote down all the places listed in the excerpt which was part of the Scents and Flower Merchants tour.

My photo of NYC – instagrammed.

The book is by Australian stylist, Sibella Court who has a very small but very full shop/studio in Sydney’s Paddington overflowing with things she has collected over her years as a stylist. Sibella spent 15 years in New York and this book lists many of her favourite places. It’s broken up into particular themes and areas with suggestions for stops for good coffee (hard to find in NYC), food and just to smell the roses.

We found Bond No 9 which has perfumes named after the different areas of NYC.

I had to laugh when I was reading the book back home in Sydney, one of her very first pieces of advice was to have a stash of bandaids, the wide fabric ones, as you don’t want to limp around the city, nor go home early, due to blisters. Oh how I wish I’d read that before I set out the first day. I did have flat comfortable shoes but was not prepared with bandaids which I quickly bought on the way back to the hotel the first night. You do a lot of walking in New York!

Easy to follow maps and suggestions

The other two books I recieved from my lovely friends in my Book Club, were books by two bloggers which I’m sure need no introduction. Grace Bonney of Design * Sponge and Holly Becker of Decor8.

Jonathan Adler has written the Foreward in Grace’s book, Design * Sponge at Home, and he calls it a Bible. I would have to agree. Grace has been blogging for 7 years and the book is a collection and extension of things she has written about online.

Design * Sponge At Home

Sneek Peaks into amazing homes all over the world, DIY projects, DIY Basics like Rewiring A Lamp and How To Paint Furniture, Flower Workshop and finally some Before and After projects with guides to cost and time invested. It really is the Home Decorator’s Bible – inspiration, tuition and knowledge.

A Sneek Peak into gorgeous homes

The subtitle of Holly Becker’s book, Decorate, is “1,000 inspirational design ideas for every room in your house” and that is what the book provides in spades. There is something in here for everyone with tips and quotes from a vast array of creative people the world over.

Decorate – the book

The book looks at Space and how to work with it, finding your own Personal Design Style, Room By Room decorating and finally, Attention to Detail. There is nothing overlooked with colour, texture, layout, displaying collections, storage, styling rooms and choosing fabrics.

Quotes, advice, inspiration and resources

If you have an aspiring decorator in your midst, any of these books would make the ideal Christmas gift.


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  1. Thank you for the reviews. I have Decorate on my xmas wish list, but I’ll have to add Design Sponge.

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