Design Books

Every year there are at least three design books on my official Christmas wish list. And it takes me a while to narrow down to my most-desired. But I thought I'd share a few titles I'm lusting after, as well as a list of my already-owned favorites. So you can add them to your list too! I'm saving this post for coffee-table style interior design books - I could probably do another just about fashion books and yet another round-up of more practical design guide books... someday!

What I'm wishing for (or aiming to buy with Christmas money!)...

Charlotte Moss: A Visual Life

American Beauty

Parish Hadley: Sixty Years of American Design

Sister Parish Design: On Decorating

Katie Ridder Rooms

The Big Book of Chic

Black and White (and a Bit in Between)

Vogue Living: Houses, Gardens, People

David Hicks: Designer

Domestic Art: Curated Interiors


And here are some titles that every design lover should own.

Elle Decor: So Chic

American Modern

Domino: The Book of Decorating

Mark Hampton on Decorating

The Perfectly Imperfect Home



Any other suggestions for me? Now that we're putting in those new shelves I'll have plenty of space!

Wall of books pro/con list

True to my decorating nature, I got an idea for the apartment in my head on Sunday and spent the whole rest of the day trying to figure out if it would work and how much it would cost. The good news is, it would be under $500. The bad news is that I'm not totally convinced that it's not a crazy idea.

We've been lamenting the lack of storage in our little one-bedroom since the day we moved in. On Sunday I was wondering aloud if there was a way to squeeze some more bookshelves into the living room somewhere. And then it hit me - line the wall with shelves and put the sofa in front of it. Yep, kinda like the picture above (originally from Domino Magazine). I had to pull up some examples for Ryan to show that the sofa wouldn't look weird. (If you need a refresher on what the living room looks like, this video probably captures that wall the best).

I'm still ruminating on this idea, and we won't really be able to act on it until after the holidays, but it's a serious possibility.


More storage (this is huge)

We love the look of lots of books on display

More of my decorative items could come out of the basement (they are cold and lonely!)

All displaced items (console, existing bookshelf) could be repurposed elsewhere in the apartment

It's not too expensive, and about the same cost as some of the currently planned purchases for the existing setup

We have the 15 inch depth needed



It will make the room feel smaller (but it's not like we're fooling anyone into thinking it's big NOW)

We lose a bit of open floor space between TV and coffee table, though it would still be plenty wide for traffic flow

This is likely a one-apartment fix - we could reuse some but probably not all of the shelving when we eventually move

Our lighting plan would need adjustments (factored some of that cost into the $500ish price)

Assembling the shelves & painting the backs will be a big pain

I'm leaning toward white shelves, but that would make almost all of our living room furniture white (suggestions?)


Help me out, folks. What do you think? I'm leaning toward going for it (hey, it's only for a couple years, and the place is small anyway!).

Between the stacks

Love these images from the last issue of Matchbook Magazine (my newest obsession). Of course you all know how much I swoon over built-in bookshelves. But isn't the outfit just the sweetest too? Looks like the perfect weekend to me!

Speaking of weekends, and books for that matter... I plan on organizing my reading list for the summer. I just finished Garrison Keillor's Pontoon. If you love Keillor, you'll like it.

Here's a few I'm hoping to get to next:

The Glass Castle

Vanity Fair

The Lacuna

Water for Elephants

and maybe reread a few favorites.

What's on your reading list this summer?


P.S. If you stop by Maggie Rose this weekend, the site will be under maintenance. New design debuts next week!


Built-in Bookshelves Anonymous

My love for built-in bookshelves is well documented (just try searching my archives for "built-in"). I love books in a home - a house without a few packed shelves feels odd to me. While renters or those on a budget can fake the look with Ikea or other basic shelving, there's nothing like a wall full of built-ins - even better if there is a ladder required. I've been saving these ones up for a while - Enjoy!