Best Books for Interior Designers

The Best Books for Interior Designers to Boost Inspiration

Avatar
Updated on

If you're a design enthusiast, there's probably always room on your shelf or coffee table for another interior design book. Books are a great source of in-depth knowledge if you're an aspiring interior designer or even if you want to grasp interior design basics.

There are various interior design books that you may use to get that useful information, even if you only want to boost the taste and vibe of your new rooms. These qualified interior designers usually use modern subjects, design styles, and shading plans in their designs.

As a design lover, you should adapt their practices to your interior design and learn from them. We have listed the top interior design books to help you stay on top of trends and gain fresh design ideas.

1. A Century of Style: Architectural Digest at 100

Sale
Architectural Digest at 100: A Century of Style
  • Hardcover Book
  • Architectural Digest (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 464 Pages - 10/08/2019 (Publication Date) - Abrams (Publisher)

Image Credit: Architectural Digest

Architectural Digest at 100 is perfect for most people who enjoy seeing how the wealthy and famous live. It's an escape and, these days, a necessary guilty pleasure to enjoy decor from vintage and contemporary pieces to mix furniture styles.

The book covers various present and past subjects, with personal spaces from many private celebrities. Some celebrities include Barack and Michelle Obama, Michael Kors, David Bowie, Diana Vreeland, and Truman Capote.

It's among the best interior design books. It also includes the works of leading interior designers like India Mahdavi, Frank Gehry, Axel Vervoordt, Peter Marino, Renzo Mongiardino, Frank Lloyd Wright, and David Hicks.

2. Welcome Home: A Cozy Minimalist Guide to Decorating by Myquillyn Smith

Welcome Home: A Cozy Minimalist Guide to Decorating and...
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • Smith, Myquillyn (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 208 Pages - 09/15/2020 (Publication Date) - Zondervan (Publisher)

Image Credit: howtohyggethebritishway.com

In her book, Welcome Home, Myquillyn Smith, a New York Times bestselling author, walks you through the minimalist process of creating and appreciating a seasonally adorned house with more elegance and fewer things.

We recommend the Welcome House's fascinating how-tos and motivating images will assist you in making a home that is beautiful, meaningful, and always prepared for visitors.

Myquillyn provides step-by-step instructions as you make deliberate design choices to create a place where loved ones can assemble, special connections can be honored, and enduring memories can be created.

3. The Finer Things: Timeless Furniture, Details, and Textiles

Sale
The Finer Things: Timeless Furniture, Textiles, and...
  • Potter Style
  • Hardcover Book
  • Lemieux, Christiane (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 416 Pages - 09/06/2016 (Publication Date) - Clarkson Potter...

Image Credit: spy.com

This book combines timeless style and fine details with advice from leading interior designers and is genuinely luxurious inside and out. The great decorating resource teaches the eye to spot long-lasting, high-quality household items and to employ them to stunning creative effect.

Lemieux has compiled an unrivaled education in identifying the characteristics of timeless, heirloom-quality items by combining the insights and direction of numerous wallpaper and paint professionals, textile fabricators, accessories makers, and interior designers.

4. Vibrant Interiors: Living Large at Home by Andrea Monath Schumacher

Sale
Vibrant Interiors: Living Large at Home
  • Hardcover Book
  • Schumacher, Andrea Monath (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 224 Pages - 05/03/2022 (Publication Date) - Gibbs Smith...

Image Credit: amazon.com

Vibrant Interiors provides various inspirations for bringing color and vibrancy to various interior design projects. Andrea Monath Schumacher promotes a welcoming, multicultural approach to interior design. Her varied preferences and fusion of influences are evident throughout.

Vibrant Interiors focuses on six significant projects: Schumacher's personal Los Angeles residence, a chic apartment, and vast ranch property. Additionally, it displays various spaces and presents a wide variety of design and color ideas. 

5. Live Beautiful by Athena Calderone

Sale
Live Beautiful
  • Hardcover Book
  • Calderone, Athena (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 256 Pages - 03/03/2020 (Publication Date) - Harry N. Abrams...

Image Credit: Luxe Home Affairs, Inc.

Athena Calderone, the artistic force behind the lifestyle website Eyeswoon, gives readers a brief glimpse inside the homes of successful creatives, from decorators like Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent to fashion influencers like Jenna Lyons.

They explore the inspiration behind their thoughtfully designed homes' overall aesthetic and how regular mortgage holders might imitate it.

6. Made for Living: Collected Interiors for All Sorts of Styles by Amber Lewis

Sale
Made for Living: Collected Interiors for All Sorts of...
  • Hardcover Book
  • Lewis, Amber (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 288 Pages - 10/27/2020 (Publication Date) - Clarkson Potter...

Image Credit: humblehome.com.au

We suggest this stylish book if you are a huge lover of the California Casual design style. The interior designer shares her views and tips from her California design work and shows some gorgeous interiors.

Amber Lewis follows a warm aesthetic, and her interior design book is full of inspiring spaces from her large portfolio, making it a perfect pattern coffee table book. Her design process will take a beginner from the start to becoming a design master with her tips and tricks, from perfect paint shades to textile layering patterns.

7. Homebody: A Guide to Creating Spaces You Never Want to Leave by Joanna Gaines

Sale
Homebody: A Guide to Creating Spaces You Never Want to...
  • Hardcover Book
  • Gaines, Joanna (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 352 Pages - 11/06/2018 (Publication Date) - Harper Design...

Image Credit: Magnolia.com

In this interior design book, you will find thoughts for planning your own space with a character that fits you and everyone who lives in the home. Homebody, the guide, also lets you observe practical design tips and tricks for executing your thoughts and information on different planning styles such as modern, farmhouse, and perfect.

The interior design book will ensure you get a living room that is both incredibly cozy and dazzling, giving you and your guests a fantastic sense of joy, warmth, and coziness.

8. Everything: A Maximalist Style Guide by Abigail Ahern

Everything: A Maximalist Style Guide
  • Hardcover Book
  • Ahern, Abigail (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 256 Pages - 10/20/2020 (Publication Date) - Pavilion Books...

Image Credit: amazon.com

This design book will teach you how to successfully implement the maximalist design aesthetic, from using vivid colors to combining different furniture designs.

The maximalist aesthetic is inclusive of everything from exquisite color schemes to lavish textiles, patterns, and ornaments. This creates a stunning space you'd be pleased to call home by artfully combining and mixing everything.

The Maximalist Style Guide is for you if you want to learn how to defy conventional interior design wisdom, experiment with many periods in a single space, and enjoy owning and displaying more objects.

9. Jungalow: Decorate Wild by Justina Blakeney

Sale
Jungalow: Decorate Wild: The Life and Style Guide
  • Hardcover Book
  • Blakeney, Justina (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 272 Pages - 04/06/2021 (Publication Date) - Harry N. Abrams...

Image Credit: Jungalow.com

Jungalow: Decorate Wild will motivate you to embrace your unique and wild style. The selection of color palettes, blending distinctive patterns, and deviating from traditional design principles will feed you inspiration.

Some call the book the definitive manual for unconventional, imaginative, and wild interior design. It is an interior design book of a kind where Justina Blakeney shares a combination of uplifting inspiration mixed with interior design philosophies, DIY instruction, and her memoir.

The interior designer's main goal is to encourage readers to find inspiration in quirky vintage decor and bring bright colors into their homes. She also empowers and inspires readers to find their voice and style.

10. Down to Earth: Laid-back Interiors for Modern Living by Lauren Liess

Sale
Down to Earth: Laid-back Interiors for Modern Living
  • Hardcover Book
  • Liess, Lauren (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 256 Pages - 10/08/2019 (Publication Date) - Harry N. Abrams...

Image Credit: insider.com

Lauren Liess' designs demonstrate no restriction on how much luxury may be accommodated in residence. This book is an excellent tool that will inspire you to accomplish approachability across design styles and trends, which is important to keep in mind when designing projects. 

11. Elements of Style: Designing a Home and a Life by Erin Gates.

Sale
Elements of Style: Designing a Home & a Life
  • Simon Schuster
  • Hardcover Book
  • Gates, Erin (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 336 Pages - 10/07/2014 (Publication Date) - Simon & Schuster...

Image Credit: kaitlinmadden.com

This 336-page interior design book is organized according to the rooms in the house, providing readers a glimpse into Erin's home and homes that she has designed from the inside for other people.

It is a great resource because it combines her more than ten years of professional experience with candid design advice, ideas, and inspiration. Each book chapter explores a room, including the entryway, dining room, and nursery.

The book has brand-new, fashionable, and bright ideas. In addition, it is brimming with advice on practical issues like choosing kitchen counter materials, dressing a bed with pads, choosing furnishings for the interior of one's home, and decorating a nursery.

12. The Lives of Others: Sublime Interiors of Extraordinary People by Simon Watson

Sale
The Lives of Others: Sublime Interiors of Extraordinary...
  • Hardcover Book
  • Watson, Simon (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 336 Pages - 09/08/2020 (Publication Date) - Rizzoli (Publisher)

Image Credit: mymoderndarcy.com

The Lives of Others by Simon Watson is one of the best books for interior designers, showcasing the beautiful homes of the best creatives that will take you down memory lane. The internationally renowned interior photographer has captured various home decor styles belonging to interesting people.

It is a perfect coffee table book, showing remarkable residences he has explored over the years. In addition, the interior design book displays an exceptional worldwide art collection and reveals the author's experience from each encounter.

13. Whiskey in a Teacup: What Growing Up in the South Taught Me About Life by Reese Witherspoon.

Sale
Whiskey in a Teacup: What Growing Up in the South...
  • Signed 1st Edition
  • Hardcover Book
  • Witherspoon, Reese (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 304 Pages - 09/18/2018 (Publication Date) - Atria Books...

Image Credit: tasteofhome.com

This book by actor Reese Witherspoon is superb if you're a southerner at heart. Southern charm and tradition are strongly ingrained in it. The theme of Whiskey in a Teacup is making your own home. There are a ton of amazing dishes, as well as even more suggestions for dinner parties and other events.

Whiskey in a Teacup is one of the best interior design books for beginners since it helps you tackle decor challenges and recipes, hospitality, and many more. It is a comprehensive interior design book that will offer a beginner a little bit of everything in an old Southern fashion.

14. Martha Stewart’s Organizing: The Manual for Bringing Order to Your Life

Sale
Martha Stewart's Organizing: The Manual for Bringing...
  • Hardcover Book
  • Stewart, Martha (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 288 Pages - 01/07/2020 (Publication Date) - Harvest (Publisher)

Image Credit: pinterest.com

Count on Martha to provide practical advice and motivation so you can master all aspects of organizing, including sorting, purging, tidying, and simplifying your life. She provides her best advice, strategies, and do-it-yourself organizing tasks here for organizing around your home.

There are seasonal tips like when to switch out bedding and clothing, how to put away holiday decorations, room-by-room strategies, and day-by-day or week-by-week schedules for tasks like decluttering, house cleaning, and setting up a filing system, overhauling the closet, and more.

15. Evocative Style by Kelly Wearstler

Image Credit: shopatfound.com

One of the top interior designers, Kelly Wearstler, is renowned for her daring aesthetic and chic blending.

Wearstler's book Evocative Style demonstrates her skill in creating rooms with a narrative, whether by fusing old and modern furnishings or experimenting with unusual textures, patterns, and organic shapes, as well as mixing furniture from various periods.

As she pushes the limits with her imaginative and opulent modern homes, they are full of quirky and exquisite concepts using vibrant color schemes and geometric artwork.

This book is a must-read for interior designers, stylists, and homeowners looking for exquisite design ideas for unique designs.

16. Still: The Slow Home by Natalie Walton:

Sale
Still: The Slow Home
  • Hardcover Book
  • Walton, Natalie (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 248 Pages - 05/19/2020 (Publication Date) - Hardie Grant...

Image Credit: harryandkit.com.au

In her book Beautiful Homes, the interior designer Natalie Walton honors quietness and embraces the new slower pace of life. Numerous people are adjusting to a faster pace of life and looking for effective strategies to improve the world.

Still: The Slow Home is one of the interior design books on the market that shows beautiful homes worldwide.

17. “Beautiful: All-American Decorating and Timeless Style by Mark D. Sikes”

Sale
Beautiful: All-American Decorating and Timeless Style
  • Rizzoli International Publications
  • Hardcover Book
  • Sikes, Mark D. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 256 Pages - 09/20/2016 (Publication Date) - Rizzoli (Publisher)

Image Credit: houseofmirrors.pl

This 250-page book showcases elegant yet user-friendly designs that fit into any home. The eight chapters each examine a different style, such as casual "Garden Greens," signature style in "Blue and White Forever," traditional "Timeless Neutrals," and the coastal cottage "Sun Faded Hues."

Every design style in the book leans more towards modern styles, drawing inspiration from the relaxed California indoor-outdoor lifestyle. It's among the most popular interior design books because it offers tips and examples on mixing furniture styles and placements.

However, most practical tips and tricks are focused on large homes, and they don't work well for family living and small homes. Nevertheless, if such a concept is what you are looking for, this is one of the best interior design books to find inspiration on up-to-date styles covering five decorating styles.

18. Dream Décor: Styling a Cool, Creative, and Comfortable Home, Wherever You Live by Will Taylor

Rockwool Acoustic Mineral Wool Insulation 60-6lbs per...
  • Mineral Wool Insulation in 6 pounds per unit density.
  • Great as Acoustic insulation or as a soundproofing material
  • Cost effective and Very High NRC Rating, better than Owens...
  • Water repelling - hydrophobic- Class A fire rating
  • Rigid Boards, perfect for making acoustic panels and bass traps

Image Credit: smartstyleinteriors.com

Will Taylor's second book, which has 250 pages, intends to assist beginners in defining and achieving their unique dream interior without becoming caught down in design theory. The first section, Dream Elements, teaches you the basics of colors, patterns, textures, forms, and lighting and explores how these aspects interact.

On the other hand, the second section, called the Dream Styles, is a visual journey of 11 different styles, including rustic, coastal, and industrial, as the sources of inspiration. The spaces chosen in the design world show Taylor's love of color while keeping things as simple as possible.

What Makes a Good Interior Design Book?

Image Credit: harpersbazaararabia.com

When shopping for the best interior design books, there are no specific principles, and what it comprises is fully up to you and what you are drawn to.

If you love the farmhouse style, opt for books packed with shiplap and antiques. On the other hand, look for old books by famous architects or self-taught designers to copy their style if you're a fan of the midcentury era.

However, it can benefit you if you choose interior design coffee table books with some design know-how that covers color palettes, mixing vintage, and arranging rooms or furniture in an organized space. An interior design book typically discusses how to approach each room in a home, from the living room to the dining room to the bedrooms and beyond.

What furnishings do you need to be present? How should the walls be decorated? How will you add your personality to the space? Of course, interior designers provide plenty of inspiration along the way.

Conclusion on the Best Books for Interior Designers.

Image Credit: woonlookbook.com

Does anyone else find so many different design and style options? Do you find yourself swooning over photo after photo in a magazine and declaring, "I want my home to look like this!" even though the images are different? 

Looking at image books when you need inspiration is fantastic, but selecting a book with a certain objective will be much simpler. We hope the interior design books we have listed above will be a helpful reference for any decor lover.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Best Books for Interior Designers

1. How Much Are Interior Design Books?

Interior design books are available in a range of styles and price points. These days, estimating product costs is challenging. The pricing range is so wide that you can't tell what interior design books would cost. For instance, depending on where you buy them, an interior design book can cost anywhere from $20 to $200 for the top designers. 

2. Is interior designing easy?

When you start, it can be intimidating, but don't give up. It is unquestionably attainable with talent and commitment! Prioritize building your talents and portfolio first, then use them to get an internship or junior position with an interior design agency. There, you can pick up knowledge of client and project management.

Photo of author

About the author

Jacky Chou

Jacky Chou is an electrical engineer turned marketer. He is the founder of Indexsy, Far & Away, Laurel & Wolf, a couple FBA businesses , and about 40 affiliate sites. He is a proud native of Vancouver, BC, who has been featured on Entrepreneur.com, Forbes, Oberlo and GoDaddy.