Ahh coffee table books... Curiosity sparkers. Conversation starters. Pieces of decor that invite others into your unique world of interests. As the saying goes, if you want to know someone, look at their bookshelves (or in this case, coffee table).
“My books are my brain and my heart made visible.”
― Merilyn Simonds
Getting a new coffee table book always feels like Christmas. The smell, the beautiful layouts, the thoughtful use of words and images captivate and inspire me. In a world where we are bombarded with new content daily, there is something to be said for flipping through a physical book that has been simplified and edited down to create a beautiful experience cover to cover. I could go on raving, but I'll cut to my current list of favorite coffee table books that are sure to spark your creativity and leave you feeling inspired.
1. Rendez - Vous: Artists and Creatives at Home
Rendez-Vous invites us into the living and working spaces of celebrated artists and creatives from Paris to New York, London to Antwerp. Each space shines a spotlight on the personal style and eclectic taste of these fascinating creatives.
2. Bill Cunningham: On The Street
What a treat- I devoured this book in one sitting and will forever go back to it for inspiration. This is the first published collection of the iconic Bill Cunningham's photography. It takes us through five decades of street style moments that Bill spent his life's work capturing. It is witty, charming, and filled with insights and stories told by those who knew him best. Bill is a New York treasure and his legacy lives on through his photos.
3. Love x Style x Life
Garance Doré is a French illustrator, writer, photographer, and style icon. This book came out in 2015 and it remains one of my favorites that I go back to every time I am in a creative rut or feeling lost. Garance's candid and humorous stories of how she became the icon she is today, paired with her stunning photography and illustrations is nothing but a delight!
4. 100 Years of Fashion Illustration
I have had this book since I was in middle school and would go as far as to say it planted the seed for many of my dreams to become a designer and illustrator. This book is a compilation of illustrations from the early 1900's to the 2010's. It is a beautiful portrayal of how fashion changes with the times and mirrors the culture. It is equal parts history, design and illustration. If you are an aspiring fashion designer, illustrator, or stylist, this book is a never-ending source of knowledge and inspiration.
5. Live Beautiful
Hot off the press! This book just came out a couple of months ago and has quickly become a favorite. Athena Calderone is a multidisciplinary creative and the founder of famous lifestyle blog, Eye Swoon. In Live Beautiful, Athena takes us through the elements of style that make up her stunning Brooklyn townhouse. We also get peeks inside other creative's homes such as Jenna Lyon's NYC apartment. What I love most about this book is how she includes concrete design tips that are easy to adopt when decorating your own personal space. This book has left me with so many new ideas that I am eager to bring into my own home!
: Norwegian Secrets for Bringing Natural Air and Light into Your Home and Office to Dramatically Improve Health and Happiness.
There is tremendous power in plants, and this book examines the scientific and creative ways in which we can use nature to improve our health. Filled with loads of ideas and examples of how we can design a peaceful plant-filled sanctuary, this book is for anyone looking to bring the outdoors in.
7. Dining In
Cookbooks are often overlooked when it comes to coffee table books, even though food is one of the most common conversation starters, connectors and creative outlets that we all share. I like to keep this book out for guests to look at, and am still cooking my way through it!
One peek inside this book will leave your mouth watering- it is filled with gorgeous food photography, and simple, delicious dishes that don't require an abundance of ingredients to make.