50 books like The Interior Design Handbook

By Frida Ramstedt,

Here are 50 books that The Interior Design Handbook fans have personally recommended if you like The Interior Design Handbook. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Rituals of Dinner: The Origins, Evolution, Eccentricities, and Meaning of Table Manners

Carolyn Steel Author Of Sitopia: How Food Can Save the World

From my list on how food shapes our lives.

Who am I?

Food and architecture have been dual passions in my life for as long as I can remember. My grandparents had a hotel in Bournemouth, and I can still recall my fascination with the way everything changed as I passed through the green baize doors between the service areas and the public rooms. I became an architect, but food was always there in the background, and much later, I realised how I could bring the two together in order to describe the world in a completely new way. This led to my first book, Hungry City, and its follow-up Sitopia, both of which have changed the way I see the world. 

Carolyn's book list on how food shapes our lives

Carolyn Steel Why did Carolyn love this book?

The Rituals of Dinner opened my eyes to the power and complexity of eating with other people – something we all do throughout our lives – and the profound ways in which this affects our relationships with friends and strangers alike.

The book delves into the history of the shared meal, dissecting various rituals which, despite regional differences, nevertheless have common threads across the world, for example in the deep, often hidden power that lies in the relationship between host and guest (words that both derive from the same root, ghostis) and the strong, even life-changing implications of knowing how to behave at dinner.

This is a fascinating and beautifully written book that will have you thinking about the way we eat long after you have finished it. 

By Margaret Visser,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Rituals of Dinner as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

With an acute eye and an irrepressible wit, Margaret Visser takes a fascinating look at the way we eat our meals. From the ancient Greeks to modern yuppies, from cannibalism and the taking of the Eucharist to formal dinners and picnics, she thoroughly defines the eating ritual.

"Read this book. You'll never look at a table knife the same way again."-The New York Times.


Book cover of The Pocket Butler's Guide to Good Housekeeping: Expert Advice on Cleaning, Laundry and Home Maintenance

Laura Calder Author Of The Inviting Life: An Inspirational Guide to Homemaking, Hosting and Opening the Door to Happiness

From my list on making and running a welcoming home.

Who am I?

Laura Calder is a recognized advocate for living well at home. She is the author of four cookbooks and received a James Beard Award for her long-running television series, French Food at Home.

Laura's book list on making and running a welcoming home

Laura Calder Why did Laura love this book?

How to run a house is no longer part of our education system. The only way to learn this vital skill – one that helps make the whole of our lives run more smoothly - is by educating ourselves. This compact book teaches us everything from how to clean a room to how to fold socks to how to descale a shower head. It’s like having your own butler to turn to for advice whenever you need it.

By Charles MacPherson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Pocket Butler's Guide to Good Housekeeping as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Everyone's favourite butler is back! Get your home spic and span with Charles MacPherson's expert tips and tricks for everything from polishing silverware to organizing the garage.

After over 30 years as a professional butler and household manager, Charles MacPherson knows a thing or two about keeping a home clean and organized. He has poured his vast knowledge and expertise into this pocket-sized volume, perfect for easy day-to-day reference or to guide your next marathon cleaning session.

Everything you need to know is here. With step-by-step instructions for cleaning, organizing, and maintaining every room in your home, The Pocket Butler's…


Book cover of A Platter of Figs and Other Recipes

Laura Calder Author Of The Inviting Life: An Inspirational Guide to Homemaking, Hosting and Opening the Door to Happiness

From my list on making and running a welcoming home.

Who am I?

Laura Calder is a recognized advocate for living well at home. She is the author of four cookbooks and received a James Beard Award for her long-running television series, French Food at Home.

Laura's book list on making and running a welcoming home

Laura Calder Why did Laura love this book?

Menu cookbooks can be tricky, but Tanis has produced this and another masterpiece (The Heart of the Artichoke 2010) both of which will up the game of any dinner-party host. The recipes are varied, imaginative, and infallible (Fish Tacos with Shredded Cabbage and Lime, Chicken Tagine with Pumpkin and Chickpeas, Rum Baba with Cardamom) and the menus sheer poetry.

By David Tanis,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Platter of Figs and Other Recipes as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In "A Platter of Figs and Other Recipes", David Tanis shows readers how to slow down, pay attention, and give ingredients their due. Worlds away from showy "Food Network" personalities and chefs who preach fussy techniques, Tanis serves up charming, unassuming meals for friends and family: couscous with rabbit and turnip for a special birthday fete, clam and chorizo paella to eat by the fireplace, and turkey with duck confit for Thanksgiving. Tanis has an elemental, unpretentious finesse with ingredients and a genuine gift with words."Dinner with Friends" is deliciously down-to-earth in covering such topics as 'Pretty vs. Beautiful Food,'…


Book cover of Great Hostesses

Laura Calder Author Of The Inviting Life: An Inspirational Guide to Homemaking, Hosting and Opening the Door to Happiness

From my list on making and running a welcoming home.

Who am I?

Laura Calder is a recognized advocate for living well at home. She is the author of four cookbooks and received a James Beard Award for her long-running television series, French Food at Home.

Laura's book list on making and running a welcoming home

Laura Calder Why did Laura love this book?

Who are the great hosts and hostesses of our day? We don’t know; nobody ever talks about them. Celebrities and socialites, instead, have stolen the spotlight. But, great hostesses of the past were not only prominent, but powerfully influential, subtly steering the fate of society this way and that. Masters provides portraits here of some of the most celebrated hostesses of days gone by, including Emerald Cunard and Mrs. Vanderbilt. A book to inspire a new generation of “inviters.”

Book cover of Life Unstyled: How to embrace imperfection and create a home you love

Joanna Thornhill Author Of My Bedroom Is an Office: & Other Interior Design Dilemmas

From my list on how our interiors can support our wellbeing.

Who am I?

I’m a lifelong interiors obsessive, which I’ve managed to turn into a multi-stranded career: I style commercial photoshoots and set up events for brands, write about interiors trends for magazines and a trend forecasting agency, have authored several interiors books of my own, and recently I’ve begun teaching my own blend of authentic yet actionable interior design tips to others, through courses, workshops, and creative consultancy. I am always interested in the why behind what makes us feel a certain way when it comes to design, and believe that creating a home that reflects and supports our emotional needs will ultimately support us in all aspects of life.

Joanna's book list on how our interiors can support our wellbeing

Joanna Thornhill Why did Joanna love this book?

I’m a big fan of Emily’s personal take on interior design: she’s been a long-time champion of decorating in a way that rails somewhat against the identikit perfectly curated homes we often see in magazines and on social media, and instead encourages her readers to find the beauty in the imperfect, unpolished, and sometimes rough-and-ready places that might not grace the cover of a glossy design tome, yet show a creative, relatable, and inherently charming style. Named after her blog, this book aims to encourage others to be brave enough to create a space that you truly love and that feels personal to you, regardless of what the proverbial Jones’s-next-door might say.

By Emily Henson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Life Unstyled as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

We are bombarded by perfect interiors, images that aren't attainable because they have been styled to the point where they bear no resemblance to reality. These interiors may be stunning, but they aren't an honest reflection of how we really live.

Life Unstyled is about taking inspiration from real homes that are beautiful, creative and inspiring but at the same time a little rough around the edges, with signs of everyday life evident throughout. The first section, 'Homes Unstyled', sets out Emily's manifesto for creating a stylish home that is beautiful but lived in. A Home is Never Done advocates…


Book cover of Every Room Should Sing

Michelle Ogundehin Author Of Happy Inside: How to harness the power of home for health and happiness

From my list on homes for health, happiness, and healing.

Who am I?

Since I was old enough to move my bedroom furniture around I was profoundly aware that my environment was as important to my wellbeing as food, sleep and exercise. It was the invisible hand that shaped my behaviour. I went on to study architecture and my first proper job was as Editor in Chief of ELLE Decoration magazine. As such I’ve seen inside thousands of homes and my passion is based on proof. I know this stuff makes a difference because I’ve healed myself through my home. And today, what I knew intuitively is now backed by science. Better homes mean better health. 

Michelle's book list on homes for health, happiness, and healing

Michelle Ogundehin Why did Michelle love this book?

Beata’s style is fun, irreverent, upbeat, and joyful. And her book is an invitation to find your own personal style, to unshackle yourself from the tyranny of trends, and to embrace self-expression. As she puts it, “There’s a lot of joy in expressing one's individuality. It is freeing.” I couldn’t agree more and her enthusiasm is palpable as she takes you through what home means for her, how to seek inspiration, making the ordinary extraordinary and why every room should sing.  

By Beata Heuman,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Every Room Should Sing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Swedish-born, London-based interior designer Beata Heuman founded her eponymous studio in 2013 after working for Nicky Haslam for nine years. In a short amount of time her lively interiors and custom furnishings have made her one of today s most in-demand creatives. Heuman s rooms, colourful spaces enlivened by exuberant elements and poetic inspirations, capture her signature quirkiness and Scandinavian attention to detail while staying rooted in practicality. Lauded for international residential and commercial projects, Heuman has also garnered praise for her growing collection of bespoke fabrics, wallpaper, lighting, homewares, and furniture. This beautifully crafted volume presents Heuman s innovative…


Book cover of Pacific Natural at Home

Chase Reynolds Ewald and Heather Sandy Hebert Author Of At Home in the Wine Country: Architecture & Design in the California Vineyards

From my list on design on inspired living on the West Coast.

Who are we?

At Home in the Wine Country coauthors Heather and Chase love the open, nature-focused attitude toward living that California does so well. Heather worked in the field of architecture for 25 years and is the author of The New Architecture of Wine. Chase has been a western lifestyle writer for 30 years and is the author of 14 books, including Modern Americana, American Rustic, Cabin Style, and Bison. As writers and consultants they work with publishers, magazines, and design, hospitality and wine clients to craft and convey their stories. Heather and Chase live in spectacularly scenic Marin County, halfway between San Francisco and California's iconic wine country.

Chase's book list on design on inspired living on the West Coast

Chase Reynolds Ewald and Heather Sandy Hebert Why did Chase love this book?

Jenny Kayne personifies the easy, laid-back approach to design and life that is so characteristic of California. Comfort plays a role equal to that of style, which is always organic, natural, and textural. Jenni Kayne's style leans toward a neutral palette that embraces and accentuates the light, color, and texture of the California landscape. She shares work from her own home, as well as homes of other creative women who share her natural design ethos.

By Jenni Kayne,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Pacific Natural at Home as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A known tastemaker and authority on style, Jenni Kayne spans the worlds of fashion, interiors, and entertaining. Inspired by organic textures, thoughtful simplicity, and natural landscapes, Kayne embodies an earthy and effortless aesthetic one that is intentional and where beauty and authenticity exist in every detail. In her second book Kayne turns to interior design, sharing her beautifully designed interiors as well as the homes of other creative women who embrace a similar natural design ethos. The book introduces the homes by location, spanning varied landscapes and design characteristics: houses by the ocean, desert-style spaces, mountain homes, and abodes in…


Book cover of The Iconic Interior: 1900 to the Present

Stephanie Travis Author Of Sketching for Architecture + Interior Design: A Practical Guide on Sketching for Architecture and Interior Design Students

From my list on introducing architecture and interior design to everyone.

Who am I?

I am a design-obsessed George Washington University (Washington, DC) professor, author, architect, interior designer, sketcher, modernist, city lover, traveler, and University of Michigan alumni who writes about topics on architecture and interior design for people of all ages and backgrounds. Everyone lives in the built environment, but not everyone understands it. For example, sketching is one of the best ways to understand a piece of furniture, interior, or building. You will never see the object the same way after you draw it! All of the books on this list are approachable, interesting, fun, and most importantly inspiring. Enjoy!

Stephanie's book list on introducing architecture and interior design to everyone

Stephanie Travis Why did Stephanie love this book?

This stunning book features 100 inspiring interiors across the globe, and is a great resource to get to know some of the world’s best designers. There is just enough text to provide an understanding of the history, concepts, and ideas behind each project, while the core focus is on the photography of rooms and details. Quite simply, you may want to study interior design after reading this book cover to cover.

By Dominic Bradbury, Richard Powers (photographer),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Iconic Interior as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This compact volume features over 100 of the most spectacular interiors from across the world, spanning the entire 20th century to the present day. It includes interiors assembled by artists and fashion designers, architects, interior and set-designers, bringing together diverse design talents from Piero Fornasetti to Alvar Aalto, Marc Newson and Matthew Williamson. Twenty short profiles are presented in the introduction, with a single iconic photograph and a concise, informative text; the interiors are arranged by chronological order, with superb colour photography and texts recounting the stories of these remarkable designs. Representing every style from minimalism and Art Nouveau to…


Book cover of The New Mindful Home: And how to make it yours

Michelle Ogundehin Author Of Happy Inside: How to harness the power of home for health and happiness

From my list on homes for health, happiness, and healing.

Who am I?

Since I was old enough to move my bedroom furniture around I was profoundly aware that my environment was as important to my wellbeing as food, sleep and exercise. It was the invisible hand that shaped my behaviour. I went on to study architecture and my first proper job was as Editor in Chief of ELLE Decoration magazine. As such I’ve seen inside thousands of homes and my passion is based on proof. I know this stuff makes a difference because I’ve healed myself through my home. And today, what I knew intuitively is now backed by science. Better homes mean better health. 

Michelle's book list on homes for health, happiness, and healing

Michelle Ogundehin Why did Michelle love this book?

A no-nonsense guide to cutting through the fads to offer practical solutions to home-based problems. A book for those who want to consider more carefully how they live without too much of the woo woo that can sometimes crop up in the well-being space, especially when we use words like mindfulness. Instead it touches on everything from making natural dyes and cruelty-free decorating to clean living, craft, and creativity. 

By Joanna Thornhill,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The New Mindful Home as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Make your home more mindful and discover a more considered way to decorate with this beautifully presented guide by acclaimed interior stylist, Joanna Thornhill.

We often think of mindfulness in relation to meditation, but our homes and interior design can play a big part in our emotional well-being. The New Mindful Home demystifies the links between body, mind and soul to explain how you can harness the power of mindfulness to help our homes support a more considered lifestyle.

How do we create spaces that can calm and revives us? With the same practical attention to problem-solving as in her…


Book cover of Geography of Home: Writings on Where We Live

Alan Hughes Author Of Interior Design Drawing

From my list on exploring interior design and our understanding.

Who am I?

As a child my heroes were designers and I thought designers could design across many disciplines, this was what I understood and aspired to. I'm fortunate to have been a designer, illustrator, and design teacher for many years. Passionate about the process I firmly believe if you can design in one area you can design in another. Understanding your material's potential is the key. As a tutor and author my job is to unwrap a student’s talent, support and encourage that unique view through skills building and advice to help them. I believe good design can solve many of the world’s problems and passing on that message is valuable.

Alan's book list on exploring interior design and our understanding

Alan Hughes Why did Alan love this book?

Recommended to me by one of my students this is a witty exploration of the places in our homes, what we call them, kitchen, bedroom, dining room and how they often don’t live up to or exceed their names. A view of the rituals and complexities of the American home and what it houses as it explores memory, aspirations, and the real meaning of home. This book is a trigger to encourage the reader to look at their own spaces and the pattern of how they use those spaces through habit, muscular memory, and cultural norms, all playing a part in how we define our living spaces.

By Akiko Busch,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Geography of Home as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The house is home to many things. Far more than four walls and a roof, it contains our private and public lives, our families, our memories and aspirations, and it reflects our attitudes toward society, culture, the environment, and our neighbours. In a literary tour of the spaces of our homes, this book reflects on how we define such elusive qualities as privacy, security, and comfort. It uncovers the hidden meanings of seemingly simple domestic spaces, in chapters ranging from "The Front Door" to "The Garage" and many others. These writings about the home touch on our culture's fundamental issues:…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in home decoration, interior design, and California?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about home decoration, interior design, and California.

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