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2021 Gift Guide: My Favorite Coffee Table Books to Gift

November 5, 2021

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1. British Designers At Home $38 This book had me with those checkerboard floors :) The British have a charm and a heritage in their design that I aspire to be. Every thing looks so lived in. Every garden looks secret and magical. I want to live on every page.

2. Vanity Fair 100 Years: From the Jazz Age to Our Age $52 This is a book for the bold! Gift this to someone who likes to make a statement — I promise it will make it into every interior photo they take this year.

3. The Nature of Home: Creating Timeless Houses $41 Jeffrey Dungan is one of my favorite architects. He has a gift for new traditional, and this book speaks to the timelessness of his work. Gift this one to the nature lover — the vistas are breathtaking.

4. Made for Living $28 Is there anything Amber can’t do? Lewis’s book is all about livability for every style. I keep this one under my arm as a friendly how-to: There are so many juicy nuggets on mixing pattern, choosing surfaces, and even picking the right lamp shade. Gift this one to the friend whose style is evolving — it’s the ultimate road map.

5. Architectural Digest at 100: A Century of Style $85 I’d go as far as to say that this one is a bible. There’s so much rich history and design authority packed into this extra large volume. It belongs on the table of anyone even remotely interested in interiors. Past to present — the gospel of our spaces.

6. A Tale of Interiors $32 This book is a visual feast! Designers to the stars, Pierce and Ward are masters at marveling the eye — from striped wallpapers to gilded treasures, mixed in with antique finds. There’s such an inspiring, daring point of view in this book. Give it to the friend with guts.

7. Beata Heuman: Every Room Should Sing $38 This book is all about finding your voice. Beata Heuman’s is an important one, for sure, but she leaves room and inspires her readers to go bold with pattern and texture. You’ll pick this one up again and again.

8. Feels Like Home: Relaxed Interiors for a Meaningful Life $30 I love Lauren Liess. This book is full of feeling — and it’s already helping me to design my home with more authenticity and intention. The case studies in this book will fascinate you!

9. Bill Cunningham: On the Street: Five Decades of Iconic Photography $31 I first collected (and gifted) this book because of its artful cover. It’s such an eye-catcher on the coffee table! But inside is the iconic, electrifying world of photographer Bill Cunningham. His chronicle of street style is unmatched and fascinating.

10. John Derian Picture Book $47 Collector John Derian is famous for his findings of centuries-old prints: flowers, fruits, animals, calligraphy, and other beautiful memorabilia specific to his eye. There’s an important line of home goods branded with these images — and some of the best are in this book. You’ll pour over these pages.

11. Kelly Wearstler $31 The boundary-pushing designer, whose MasterClass I devoured, has published her first book in 10 years! This book is luxurious and swanky and cool. It’s homework for the design world and a source of worship for all of us. Gift this to the super fan (aka: everyone).

12. Pacific Natural at Home $39 Jenni Kayne is the queen of California-cool. Her laid-back style is one that we all aspire to, and when it comes to interiors, she’s earthy and effortless. Gift this to the dreamer in your midst.

13. Still: The Slow Home $35 This book is all about the important role that environment plays in our home. Just turning the pages is a zen meditation — it’s minimalist and neutral and will change the way you think about what you surround yourself with.

14. This is Home: The Art of Simple Living $37 This book is a literal blessing. It’s all about creating a space that feels wholehearted and authentic. There’s no fuss about money and budget — Instead, the big takeaway is how to think creatively and how to tap into a home style that’s truly you.

15. Down to Earth: Laid-back Interiors for Modern Living $29 Lauren Liess’s 2019 book is all about laid-back approachability. There are easy-to-follow priciples in this book that make creative functional living feel accessible. Oh, and every page is gorgeous.

16. Leonardo da Vinci: Complete Paintings $70 Life imitates art. This book is the most comprehensive reference on da Vinci with the most images of his work. You might surprise yourself at the creativity this coffee table book could unlock.

17. Sailing the Seas $45 A brisk nautical tome looks handsome on an entry table, and there’s a lot of seaworthy tradition to thumb through.

18. Cocoa $12 A chocolate-lover’s dream! This eye-catching volume documents the “exotic, indulgent, hedonistic and sensual” power of cocoa. It’s a conversation-starter. It’s fascinating. And it’s pretty, to boot.

19. Tom Ford $99 This book is so iconic that there are blank knock-offs on eBay. But gift the fashion-forward friend in your life the real thing. This book is a complete catalogue of Ford’s design work for both Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent from 1994 to 2004. It’s an education.

20. Leather Ballparks $119 My Uncle Judd is a big baseball fan. He makes it to something like 100 games per season. And his wife, my Aunt Betsy, has incredible taste. I can’t think of a better duo to whom to gift this book! Let’s all hold on to a little nostalgia this Christmas.

You can find more coffee table books here and here! And the 2021 Gift Guide so far right here!

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