"The Things That Matter convincingly lays out Nate Berkus’s philosophy that things do matter. Our homes tell our stories, they reflect the places we’v...more"The Things That Matter convincingly lays out Nate Berkus’s philosophy that things do matter. Our homes tell our stories, they reflect the places we’ve been and the people we’ve loved along the way—and there can be no more beautiful design for living than that."
I forget how this ended up on my radar, but I started glancing through the intro (the book is far more text than photos), and whoa, I had no idea Nate Berkus survived the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami and lost his partner there. That part was heart-wrenching to read. His body was never found.
"He showed me a bigger life than I'd ever dreamed of for myself."
"Since December 26, 2004, I have never defined myself by anything other than my ability to survive. I don't think about whether I'm successful, or I'm not successful, famous or not famous, busy or bored. To me, the ultimate question, the only question, is, Can I survive or can't I? That's what matters. I remember once talking to a friend who never seemed able to appreciate the beauty of a moment. She and I had gone to a fantastic destination wedding, and the next day all she kept saying was how she couldn't believe it was over, and that now she'd have to return to her everyday life. I had to remind her that the point of the trip wasn't that it was over, but that it had happened. Which is how I think about the year I had with Fernando."
This collection of mostly pictures shows off architectural marvels of tiny pads that were designed to be that way, with lofts, ladders, murphy beds, a...moreThis collection of mostly pictures shows off architectural marvels of tiny pads that were designed to be that way, with lofts, ladders, murphy beds, and parts that flip and slide. Most are in non-U.S. big cities. Drool worthy.(less)
"In a world filled with beige interiors, Morocco is the perfect antidote: a refuge for addicts of saturated color, a haven for devotees of intricate p...more"In a world filled with beige interiors, Morocco is the perfect antidote: a refuge for addicts of saturated color, a haven for devotees of intricate pattern, a destination for admirers of striking architecture."
Totally my kind of book. Beautiful book design, beautiful interior design, and the author (of the blog http://moroccanmaryam.typepad.com/) actually lives in Marrakesh with her family, so her experiences and materials are authentic. I even read most of the text, whereas usually I get these types of books to look at the pictures.
p. 62 - "Hang a pierced lantern from your ceiling so it casts patterns all over your walls. The look is dramatic and plays with patterns in a surprising way."
p. 66 - "color is embraced as a source of happiness, visual stimulation, and beauty..."
p. 68 - "In addition to matte colors, shimmery, reflective metallics, such as silver, gold, and copper, are in demand. These metallics are woven into textiles, stamped on leather, or used for flourishes on pottery; special surface treatments may add an extra luster and depth to color. The more shimmer, luster, and glow, the more desirable."
p. 73 - Electric Majorelle blue (is this the same as Yves Klein blue?)
p. 110 - stencilling a floor (vs. tiling)
p. 123 - "Forgo a larger coffee table and use two or three tea tables instead. They're convenient because they can be used in multiple configurations."
p. 149 - hang a carpet to serve as a bed's headboard
p. 154 - photo - thrifted treasures hanging on the wall (pictures & objects in an artful arrangement)
p. 166 - Making Moroccan mint tea - proverb says, "The first glass is as bitter as life, the second glass is as sweet as love, the third glass is as gentle as death."
p. 173 - photo - yellow & orange tiled bathroom(less)
Flipped through, as it's mostly sewing instructions and patterns. I love the bright-on-bright patterns of the author's fabrics! Another nice book desi...moreFlipped through, as it's mostly sewing instructions and patterns. I love the bright-on-bright patterns of the author's fabrics! Another nice book design from Chronicle Books.
"The more you strive and search for happiness the more you overlook the possibility that it is here already." --Robert Holden
"Play around with fabrics and don't be afraid to mix and match colors. Radiant hues lend such vibrancy to decor!"
"Try to remember that you are right where you are supposed to be, and that is where happiness lies."(less)
This giant book could be a thesis on the theme "presentation is everything." The photographs are large and gorgeous, and I like that the book is divid...moreThis giant book could be a thesis on the theme "presentation is everything." The photographs are large and gorgeous, and I like that the book is divided into Mornings, Afternoons, and Evenings -- you can see how the light changes. Martha has rightfully dedicated the book to her main photographer (among others): "To Frederic Lagrange, for his keen eye for beauty -- whether that beauty is found in nature, in people, or in food and flowers."
I know Martha has a huge budget and staff to accomplish the impressive (some would say ridiculous) scale in everything she does, but I think the ideas behind it can translate to mortals. Every detail counts and shows a love for what you are presenting, from lighting to fabric texture to flowers. Martha has a couple different homes and venues, but they each have a name and a personality. I like this. It might be a dream of mine to be invited to one of her parties, but until then, I can pretend I live in this book.
p. 43 -- giant silver kugel balls hanging in an outdoor tree, reflecting snow
p. 234-235 -- a "morning after" photo. So much wine was drunk that they went to bed without clearing the table!
p. 252 -- "As I have admitted, I am an enthusiast for change, for subtly altering the traditional to make it more interesting, more creative, more inventive. I am a firm believer that there are almost infinite choices for a single thing, such as the [Thanksgiving] turkey."
p. 265 -- this picture (warm/cool)
p. 296 -- Salix (curly willow branches) in a large pot with Easter egg ornaments
p. 321 -- birch logs propped up outside carport for a forest effect
Thanks to Maggie for recommending this -- it is very inspiring! As someone who has a spare room for art stuff but always lacks organization in there,...moreThanks to Maggie for recommending this -- it is very inspiring! As someone who has a spare room for art stuff but always lacks organization in there, I could really use some of the tips in this book.
p. 35 #9 The artist, not the fabric, makes the art. Fabric can become the crutch you fall back on instead of moving into the scary unknown called art making. A perceived lack of fabric or "just the right fabric" is really just an excuse not to create. You don't need more fabric -- you need to use what you have.
p. 39 - photo - bench w/cushions on top, coffee table books shelved underneath
p. 49 - The most important thing is to make it work for you, make it inspire you, and live the life you've imagined.
p. 51 - "Use the talents you possess, for the woods would be silent if no birds sang except the best." ~Henry Van Dyke
p. 55 - good organization tips. "A major clean-up isn't necessary. Just do whatever it takes to make it easy for you to begin again the next time."
p. 63 - "I have literally surrounded myself with all the inspiration and prettiness that makes me feel happy, invigorated, and constantly creative."
p. 66 - "I added some yellow because it encourages creativity" (does it?)
Hollow-core door across shelves = desk at counter height
p. 79 - I also use Flickr to share photos of my work with others. You must read Flickr's terms and conditions carefully, though, and not blatantly link to your work for sale. You can, however, link to your blog, which can then mention where your work is available for purchase.
p. 91 - freezer-paper-wrapped bricks for weighing down glued collage elements
p. 92 - handmade papers clipped to pant hangers (this is brilliant!)
p. 97 - umbrella stand for storing rolls of paper
p. 100 - "Every so often I get the urge to rearrange the art on my walls and all the 'stuff' that fills the nooks and crannies. In this way, my studio becomes almost like a gallery, with ever-changing exhibitions. And this is important to me, as my space is as much a source of inspiration as it is a place to create."
p. 105 - "My feeling is that if you think of your studio space as an extension of your personality and surround yourself with your favorite things, you will constantly be inspired."
p. 124 - chapter on lighting. Very important.
p. 126 - CRI (Color Rendering Index) - the accuracy of how well a light bulb shows the colors it illuminates. The color rendering index ranges from 1-100, with the higher numbers approaching the color replicating properties of full-spectrum sunlight (CRI rating 100). Thus, the higher the CRI, the truer colors appear. Look for bulbs rated at least 75 or higher.
p. 128 - there is even a light that fits onto your ear like a Bluetooth, providing direct light onto your work (whaaaaa??)
P. 129 - Color temperature. All bulbs are rated based on the color of light they emit. Light color is measured in degrees Kelvin (K). Spec 35, 40, or 50: 3,500-5,000K - Good for task lighting Cool white: 4,100K - Reasonable for general lighting Natural sunshine: 5,000K - Great for general lighting Daylight Deluxe: 6,500K - Very bright (may be too bright for a small space)
Only looked at the pictures, but whoa. Some major eye candy for history and art history buffs, anyone who likes to see inside palaces and museums, arm...moreOnly looked at the pictures, but whoa. Some major eye candy for history and art history buffs, anyone who likes to see inside palaces and museums, armchair travelers, and those interested in pattern and textiles.
p. 84-85 flower-shaped dragon chandeliers
p. 211 purple peacock room!
P. 219-223 are captioned "folie de grandeur," and they are that. It's almost more ornate than the eyes can process, but I love the colors. (less)
Just flipped through it. I love the title idea: that one shouldn't spend all one's life cleaning the house. But to me that means you should have less...moreJust flipped through it. I love the title idea: that one shouldn't spend all one's life cleaning the house. But to me that means you should have less stuff around to get messy, and you work hard at keeping on top of it in small pieces so it's never an overwhelming job (ha! easier said than done). The photos in this book are too cluttered for me, as my tastes are seeming to grow more minimal the older I get. I agree with living life, but also not living it with everything piled up in rooms with me. (less)
I only looked at the pictures, but if I find myself feeling ambitious, I'd love to try some of these. They seem to have houseplants beat because of 1)...moreI only looked at the pictures, but if I find myself feeling ambitious, I'd love to try some of these. They seem to have houseplants beat because of 1) cat-proofiness, 2) textures (sand, polished rocks, multiple kinds of plants), 3) low-maintenance if you want to keep plants in the winter or are a Plant Forgetter like me, and 4) artisticness -- add crystals, shells, tiny props, cool-shaped containers, etc. Beautifully photographed.(less)
I'm not a sewer, but I just want to hug this book, for the lovely photographs (the color, the lighting, the midwestern feel), and Amy Butler's life ph...moreI'm not a sewer, but I just want to hug this book, for the lovely photographs (the color, the lighting, the midwestern feel), and Amy Butler's life philosophy and design sensibility.
From the introduction:
"I see the distinct connection between all the different aspects of a person's life as contributing to their overall artistic voice. That's why this book covers fashion, home, garden, and even a bit of travel. Textures, colors, fragrances, sounds, and even tastes are explored as well."
"It's not about money or talent. It's about creativity and love."
p. 10 - surroundings p. 17 - story p. 45 - soaps(less)
Someone on Goodreads mentioned this as one of their favorite decorating books ever, but it's not my style. I've never been a flea-market scavenger and...moreSomeone on Goodreads mentioned this as one of their favorite decorating books ever, but it's not my style. I've never been a flea-market scavenger and that seems to be the backbone of this book.
I might think of this book if I was trying to build a totally lived-in space out of nothing, like for a movie set with characters who live in odd places with a lot of stuff, including dolls, taxidermy, and drapes. Not for the clutter-fearing.(less)
By "read," I mean "flipped through and looked at the pretty pictures." I don't think vintage is a style I'd pursue unless it occurs naturally. The lin...moreBy "read," I mean "flipped through and looked at the pretty pictures." I don't think vintage is a style I'd pursue unless it occurs naturally. The line between "vintage" and "junky" is a very fine one if you are lazy like me. I do like all the uses of "bunting" or little strings of pennants/flags (I know these are all over the crafty blogosphere, but I do like their easy addition of color and a festive atmosphere!).
The best decorating books have the best lighting, the best photography, and the best flowers. (less)
A quote from the intro explains this book pretty well: "...envy and competition keep someone like me tuned into The Selby, fascinated with how the res...moreA quote from the intro explains this book pretty well: "...envy and competition keep someone like me tuned into The Selby, fascinated with how the rest of the world enjoys their totally awesome lives (because everyone's place is totally better than mine, duh)..."
It just didn't do a lot for me. It was cool to see inside the homes of real, artsy people (Karl Lagerfeld has an INSANE book collection), but most of it seemed posed, cluttered, and too heavy on the taxidermy. I'm proud that I can have an artistic home without a narwhal tusk.
Still, the international angle was cool (check out the gal who lives on a canal boat in London, p. 184, and the pink ocean photo on p. 102), and so was the people answering random questions in sketchbook format, like "what are your top 6 favorite dinner spots?" and "draw your most prized possession." This would be utterly fascinating if I knew who most of these people were. Also, if I could read their handwriting. Once again, I'll get my font snobbery on: it doesn't matter how hip it is if a person can't read it.
"Hanging out with Dan is an endurance race that you will never win."(less)
Wanted to like this more than I did. It's a lovely format, with a sturdy library-bound cover, thick matte pages, and great printed colors. But the hea...moreWanted to like this more than I did. It's a lovely format, with a sturdy library-bound cover, thick matte pages, and great printed colors. But the heart of it is about making and displaying collections, and collections = clutter. The pictures made me feel a little claustrophobic. I thought they were great ideas for store displays (which is the author's background), but not for living with every day. IMHO, artwork needs breathing space in a home, and should only be hung salon-style in a gallery or museum. If I had collections, though, I might feel differently, and wish the book had talked more about the how-to of different hanging techniques instead of just showing examples. I also have a pet peeve about changing font styles and sizes, and the text's random breaks into all caps (caps is shouting, man) and a hard-to-read letterpress font had me skipping the words altogether.
Still and all, there were some ideas I liked:
p. 46 - framed jewelry - Line an old frame w/felt and pin your jewelry pieces to it Chapter 2: It's Magic - using mirrors, light, and reflection to create the illustion of space and bringing the outdoors in p. 124 - memory wall of colorful photos covering a chimney; round silver mosaic mirror over top p. 134 - postcards/greeting cards affixed to the wall as an art piece/memory board p. 158 - inspiration wall of images (blue tones moving gradually to neutral tones - VERY cool - also included 3D objects, not just photos) p. 175 - portrait wall along a staircase - unframed oil paintings collected from antique shops p. 190 - decoupage plates - wonder how they got so thick and shiny
Things I don't care for:
monochromatic color schemes black & white color schemes animal bones or taxidermy as decor(less)