Today my Five things are Five great "home/style" books that I have. I love love love books. They are one of my favourite things, and I really like books that I can just look at and enjoy the pictures or get ideas from if that is what I am looking for.
Although I have never straight out copied anything from any of these books - although I don't imagine that anyone does that - they have given inspiration in different ways. Colours that go together - or don't - how to group collections of objects and different ways to display things. The books themselves are also lovely to use to decorate with. What looks nicer than a pile of inviting books sitting on a coffee table just waiting to be browsed.
I have to confess that I have more than Five such books, but these are Five that I chose to share with you today. You can see just a small selection of our "home" books below.
1. First up is Country Style by Judith and Martin Miller. I thought that this book would be all country cottages and perhaps a bit twee. It isn't like that at all though.
Each chapter is about a different sort of "country style" from different countries. One of my favourites is the Scandinavian chapter. The details that are shown are so enchanting. I mean, can you imagine just latching your home up when you go out with a stick!
There is wonderful furniture as well. The piece above is from the Scandinavian chapter and the room below is from the American chapter. It is the quilt in this picture that really appeals to me.
2. The next book is another by Judith Miller, Wooden Houses.
This really enchants me more than I can say. I mean, look at this wonderful Scandinavian building!! This is what every girl reading Heidi dreams of - different country I realise!!!
Can you imagine living somewhere where the interior was painted like this! How wonderful would that be. Of course I am not sure that I would want to do the painting!!!
There are many different sorts of homes in this book, some that are far more pared down such as this one below. This is the sort of house that really appeals to me as somewhere to live. The chair, white walls, eye level windows... All of it is beautiful to my eyes.
If you like any sort of wooden home, from log cabins to beach huts, this book would appeal to you.
3. I think that How to Decorate by Martha Stewart is probably my oldest home decorating book.
Although I have never decorated anything in the style of this book it has been an inspiration in terms of how to arrange collections of objects, colours that might go together and so on.
This mid century look (below) is one of the looks that really appeals to me. Although I am not sure that I would want a whole wall of mirrors!!
There are chapters on many different things including one on work spaces. You can see that the computer screen in the picture below really dates this book, but this desk would still work really well now wouldn't it. Good job that Martha cannot see my desk right now, it never looks like this.
4. Living in Cuba by Simon McBride and Alexandra Black is actually more of a holiday souvenir than anything else. We went to Cuba some years ago and one of the very few things that we bought was this book. In fact I think this is the only thing that we bought ourselves.
The homes pictured in the book are quite often as you would expect, painted in bright colours, looking very shabby with peeling paint and old American cars outside. However, many of them are very different. As you can see in the photo below.
This scene looking outside is also not necessarily what would expect to see in Cuba.
It really does go to show that you should not judge a book by its cover, or a country by its stereotypes!!
5. I have saved the best for last in this selection. My favourite of these five books is Modern by Alan Powers. We bought this when visiting a National Trust property a few years ago, again as a souvenir. It contains plans and details of many "modern" homes and buildings.
These are not necessarily to everyone's taste I realise, but they are to mine and these sort of homes really set my mind racing with ideas.
Many of the buildings in this book are much older than you might think, dating from early in the last century, but they still look so modern and fresh. The uncluttered lines and pared down ornamentation really appeal to me as somewhere to live.
So that is my Five for today! It was lovely to spend some time looking through my books to choose five to share with you and it reminded me that we really should take time to enjoy and browse through the beautiful books that we have. Time for a new pile on the coffee table I think!
I hope that everyone in the UK has a great Bank Holiday Weekend! Enjoy the extra day off on Monday and I hope you get to do something fun!!
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