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Fall Reading List

The harvest season yields a compelling crop of new books from a veritable who’s who of interior and product designers

Written by Sally Finder Weepie and Tara Larson

Kerry Joyce: The Intangible by Kerry Joyce

His fabrics, his furniture, his interiors—they all have a certain je ne sais quoi. Now Kerry Joyce, in his first book, sheds light on the intangible, taking readers through eight projects in which his quiet classicism turned mere houses into homes. You’ll want to jump right in—but don’t skip the introduction. Joyce (did you know he won an Emmy?) talks about his unusual career path and describes all aspects of his work including product design. 

Suzanne Kasler: Sophisticated Simplicity by Suzanne Kasler with Judith Nasatir

Suzanne Kasler’s third book inspires, as her fans would expect, with pages of her recent design projects from Maine to New York and across the Southern states. But this isn’t just another pretty picture book. The Atlanta designer, known for her well-edited, deftly mixed, sophisticated spaces, also gives readers a glimpse inside her approach to the art of home decoration from the fundamentals of room arrangement to finishing touches.

Veere Grenney: A Point of View by Veere Grenney

Growing up in New Zealand, Veere Grenney had no idea how to follow in the footsteps of design legends Billy Baldwin and David Hicks. So he set off on a trip of discovery through Nepal, India, Afghanistan, Turkey, Burma, Singapore, and London. He learned about antiques, worked at Colefax and Fowler, then finally launched his long dreamed of—now renowned—design firm. Follow along on this internationally acclaimed designer’s journey and see some of his favorite projects in this intriguing book. 

Thomas O’Brien: Library House by Thomas O’Brien

Design aficionados will eagerly accept this invitation to step inside the Bellport, New York, home of designer Thomas O’Brien. In this beautifully photographed book, the founder of Aero Studios takes readers on a tour of the architecture, interiors, gardens, and collections of The Library, his home and design studio on Long Island. As he describes the process of creating his dream house—new but with a look as if it were shaped over generations—O’Brien grants us a view into how he lives and works. 

Steven Gambrel: Perspective by Steven Gambrel

This time you can judge a book by its cover. The casing of Steven Gambrel’s latest offering is crafted from luxurious fabric, which holds an image that sets the stage for the urbane juxtapositions to come. Gambrel shows us recent projects as varied as his 19th-century West Village townhouse and a charming sea captain’s home in Sag Harbor, New York. Rooms range from elegant country to high-gloss urban and feature an array of Gambrel’s carefully curated palettes, textures, and furnishings. 

Storied Interiors: The Designs of Patrick Sutton and the Stories That Shaped Them by Patrick Sutton

Baltimore-based interior designer Patrick Sutton grew up touring the world with his travel journalist father and fashion model mother. The young voyager developed a vivid visual library of the world's beautiful spaces: the golden light of Rome, the colorful spices of Marrakesh, the polished-marble floors of a Paris hotel. Following his love of design to a career in architecture and interiors, Sutton now draws upon this store of memories to craft unique interiors. In his first book, the designer offers glamorous presentations of 10 residences and four hotels and restaurants, including the award-winning Sagamore Pendry Hotel in Baltimore. In addition, he details the eight design principles, from proportion and balance to the effect of different ceiling treatments, through which he creates his evocative interiors.

Inspired Design: The 100 Most Important Interior Designers of the Past 100 Years by Jennifer Boles

Who are the 100 interior designers everybody needs to know? This book, in celebration of Kravet’s 100th anniversary, accepts the challenge of answering that question. It sets out a list vetted by the design industry—Kravet Inc. enlisted the help of today’s designers and design enthusiasts to source who they consider to be industry vanguards. From there, this list of 100 most important designers was born.

Readers will recognize some of them, including “The Big Six,” who would be on anybody’s list, like David Hicks. But many of them will be new, such as of Bill Willis, the original master of Moroccan style, and Barbara D’Arcy, whose model rooms at Bloomingdale’s were must-sees for the jet set in the 1960s.

There are introductions to a long line of uniquely American decorators stretching from Francis Elkins to Tom Scheerer, but the selected 100 come from around the world—from France, Italy, Iran, and England. Once, the United Kingdom gave us the romance of John Fowler and Geoffrey Bennison; today, it’s the energy of Kit Kemp and Veere Grenney.

Edited by Stephen Drucker, former editor in chief of House Beautiful and Martha Stewart Living as well as editor of the New York Times Home and Styles sections, Inspired Design is written by Jennifer Boles, editor of The Peak of Chic blog. Boles is the discerning guide to this exhilarating century of design, leading readers from penthouses to palazzos, and from Marrakech to Malibu, in search of the very best in inspired design.

Mark Epstein Designs by Mark Epstein

In this book, New York designer Mark Epstein shows his breadth of talent in 13 projects. All speak to his design philosophy: The home is a dynamic environment designed to foster contentment. To that end, Epstein accompanies each project with real-life advice: tips on successful entertaining, great recipes, memorable table settings, how to show off collections, and more.

The Curated Home: A Fresh Take on Tradition by Grant Gibson

Drawing on inspiration from his personal style, world travels, and client experience, San Francisco-based designer Grant K. Gibson takes you on a journey to curate your perfect home. This highly instructional design book covers wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling, in an engaging and comprehensive look at what makes a home both functional and beautiful. Learn the importance of not just decorating with objects, but infusing your living space with items that have meaning in your own life.

Each chapter focuses on a different element of the home: foyer, living room, dining room, kitchen, bedrooms, kids’ rooms, and bathrooms and powder rooms. Discover Gibson’s design philosophy―and the questions you should be asking yourself―as it pertains to each. Sidebars with design secrets, decorating tips, and how-tos provide further instruction. Thorough and personable, showcasing photography from Gibson’s portfolio, his travels, and vast collection of previously unpublished snapshots taken in the process of his design work, The Curated Home offers true design inspiration.

Dream Design Live by Paloma Contreras

In this book, Houston decorator Paloma Contreras goes beyond interior design to show readers how to inhabit their homes in fulfilling and beautiful ways. Divided into three sections, this hardworking book proves that the most appealing interiors are also the most personal ones. Contreras takes readers through the design process and encourages them to seek inspiration from the approach that works best for them. From thinking creatively to improve both your home and your life, to showing you how to turn your dreams into realities, the author reveals how you can take the welcoming space you’ve just created and spend meaningful time there pursuing the activities you love. With stunning photography and accessible-yet-elegant tips, Dream Design Live fuses interior decorating advice with lifestyle recommendations and demonstrates how living a happy and satisfying life starts at home.

Mod Mirage: The Midcentury Architecture of Rancho Mirage by Melissa Riche

Writer Melissa Riche and her photographer husband Jim Riche have teamed to create a comprehensive study of midcentury architecture, devoted entirely to the city of Rancho Mirage, California. This is the first publication to focus on the impressive architectural legacy of Rancho Mirage, the ‘other desert city’ a few miles east of Palm Springs that grew out of the success of Thunderbird and Tamarisk Country Clubs. The city rivals Palm Springs for its sumptuous midcentury homes.  Leading modernist architects designed stunning houses with panoramic views for clients with deep pockets.   The results were some of the desert’s finest designs: the elegant Firestone Estate, designed for Leonard Firestone by William Pereira, the modernist Scandinavian-influenced home by E. Stewart Williams for rancher Bill Kenaston, numerous homes by William F. Cody for clients like steel magnate Earle M. Jorgensen, and of course Sunnylands by A. Quincy Jones for the Annenbergs. 

On Interior Design by Penny Drue Baird

In her latest book, prominent decorator and author Penny Drue Baird explores the essential aspects of contemporary interiors. Successful interior design—creative, comfortable rooms with a personal touch—is built from layer upon layer of color, texture, pattern, and embellishment, she says.

Baird discusses architectural details, furniture, color, fabric, flooring, lighting, and accessories, offering equal servings of expertise, history, and recommendation. She illustrates her topics with dozens of photographs of her work, from apartments in New York City to houses in the Hamptons and Palm Beach to a residence in Paris. Building on her three previous books, Baird imparts the lessons and principles gleaned from her 30-plus years in practice.

The Nature of Home: Creating Timeless Houses by Jeffrey Dungan

Architect Jeffrey Dungan is recognized for his clean and modern approach to traditional homes. His fresh take on architecture is rooted in the beauty of materials rendered in their natural state. This new book highlights Dungan’s residential projects throughout the years and includes several recently completed and unpublished projects. Layered between more than 200 images are thematic essays that showcase Dungan’s approach to architecture and the importance of elements and materials.

Personal Space by Trip Haenisch

One of Hollywood’s top designers, Trip Haenisch, takes you inside his classy yet cool work on the West Coast. Haenisch has worked with several celebrities throughout his career, and through this book, you can see why he is continually hired by Hollywood’s stars. Each flip of a page leads you to a new celebrity home, or one of Haenisch’s top design projects.  (Rizzoli)

The New Glamour: Interiors with Star Quality by Jeff Andrews

Through designer Jeff Andrews’ first book, you get a glimpse of what it’s like to work for some of the biggest celebrities (like the Kardashian-Jenner clan) in their most personal spaces. Not only does Andrews design living spaces included in this book, but he also has his own lines of furniture, wallpaper, wood surfaces, and rugs scattered throughout. (Rizzoli)

Stoned: Architects, Designers & Artists on the Rocks by Thijs Demeulemeester

Belgian lifestyle journalist Thijs Demeulemeester authored Stoned, a book packed with over 200 images of marble used in architectural and interior projects. The journalist, specializing in interiors, contemporary art, and architecture, discusses the marble revolution throughout the pages, from mining and stone picking to the finishing touches. (Lannoo Publishers)

Contemporary Classical Architecture by John B. Murray

Five years after his first book was released, Murray has released his second. Throughout this book, Murray, the principal architect of John B. Murray Architect in New York, explores East Coast traditional living spaces. The pages are chocked full of clean lines and intricate crown moldings overlooking Central Park and the Hamptons, as well as other elegant Eastern locations. (The Monacelli Press)

Clodagh: Life-Enhancing Design 

Clodagh’s signature style is described as “Life-Enhancing Minimalism.” The designer believes that minimalism should not be self-denying, but clutter undermines serenity. Her third book shows how she balances these conflicting thoughts in her work to improve clients’ lives, and how it could possibly enhance yours.

Bulgari: Treasures of Rome by Vincent Meylan

One might think of Paris as the world’s jeweler elite, but that is simply because Rome is overlooked. In this book, Vincent Meylan explores Bulgari’s Roman origins with complete access to their expansive archives. Chapters span from celebrity customers—like Richard Burton buying for Elizabeth Taylor—to the rich history of the Roman jewels themselves. (ACC Art Books) 

May I Come In? by Wendy Goodman

The title of this book is fitting, as Wendy Goodman—New York magazine’s interior design editor of 20 years—explores over 75 homes. Each dwelling is unique like its owner and full of surprising stories to share. Top interior photographers’ imagery dresses the pages, in addition to Goodman’s own snapshots, which adds a personal touch. (Abrams, New York)

Be Bold by Jay Jeffers

Jay Jeffers offers a first-hand look at some of his projects in his celebrated second book. From sprawling living areas to pool terraces and dynamic kids’ bedrooms, each design acknowledges Jeffers’ attention to detail and appreciation for living well. (Gibbs Smith)

Gatekeeper: World of Folly by Hunt Slonem

Hunt Slonem dubs the term “collectorating”--a combination of collecting and decorating--in his latest project, Gatekeeper: World of Folly. The notable American artist depicts his travels throughout the country while developing his collectorating system. Each page flip brings a new experience of what he discovered, as well as bright pops of color and unexpected design. (Assouline)