Gorgeous Design Books for your Christmas Wish List

 
 
PARIS IN STYLE: THE NEW PETIT GUIDE TO PARIS
 
I didn’t want to write about Paris during the recent coverage of the terrorist attacks, because I was so heartbroken for the city. (And I’m still a little heartbroken over my own father, too.) But I thought the best way to remember Paris was to celebrate her. Paris needs to be visited; it needs to be loved and embraced and remembered. If you haven’t yet visited this sublime place, consider doing so in 2016. Because Paris needs you!
 
PARIS IN STYLE (LINK) was a wonderful book to write because it took me back to Paris, and to those places that will always remain in my heart. The gorgeous Parisian gardens and parks, the beautiful little independent boutiques and stores (including secret fashion and design bookshops), all the fantastic places to buy new and vintage designer labels, handbags and scarves (some of the vintage Hermès scarves are more beautiful than the modern versions), plus hundreds of other design secrets. (And lest you think it’s all about high-end labels, there are guides to the flea markets and other affordable destinations, too. Since I can’t afford Chanel either!)
 
However, it also features many Paris destinations that I’ve only just discovered these past few years, ranging from textile stores to enchanting and often tucked-away neighborhoods — including a great neighborhood for architecture lovers that feels like a piece of pastoral France, with mini-chateaux and villas.
 
It’s my little tribute to a city that still sparkles, even after all this horror.
 
A few page spreads are collaged here…
 
 
 
PARIS IN STYLE. PUBLISHED BY MUP (Melbourne University Publishers).
SEPT 2015.
 
LINK HERE or on AMAZON
 
 
 
 
 
GRACE: A NEW EDITION OF THE BESTSELLING MONOGRAPH
 
One of the most popular fashion books ever published was Grace; Grace Coddington’s beautiful book about her life and fashion shoots at US Vogue. It was so popular that editions have been selling on Abe Books and eBay for up to $1000. Well now Phaidon publishers, in all their wisdom, have decided to buy the rights and re-publish it. And the new copies are being snapped up just as quickly as the old ones! It’s come out just in time for Christmas, and Grace has been doing book signings in New York this past week. (I believe The Strand still has signed copies available?)
 
What isn’t as well-known is that Grace is working on a follow-up to this illustrated monograph, which will be published mid-2016, and will feature Vogue fashion shoots from 2002 to the present day. Vogue’s famous September issue (2016) will carry an extensive interview with Grace to promote the book’s publication.
 
For those who love Grace and her talent and style, there’s a lovely interview on Phaidon’s website, where Grace reveals her aversion to social media and other humorous insights, including how her book has become a much-thumbed reference at the Vogue offices. “Everybody around is always coming and borrowing it and wanting to look at it again; everybody’s always referencing it. It’s been useful for that, because all of the shoots are dated and there’s an index in the back.”
 
The Phaidon interviews with Grace are HERE and HERE. (Above images from Phaidon’s website.)
 
GRACE. PUBLISHED BY PHAIDON.
DECEMBER 2015
 
 
LIFE IN SQUARES: CELEBRATING THE CENTENARY OF THE BLOOMSBURY SET
 
{CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE THEM}
 
2016 marks the 100th anniversary of the Bloomsbury Group (not sure how, but it’s a great marketing tool!), and already there are books and films and TV series being rolled out in anticipation of the Bloomy ‘buzz’. Recently, there was the sumptuous and much-talked-about BBC series Life in Squares, which is now available on DVD. But if you can’t find that, Amy Licence’s book, Living in Squares, is just as compelling. The story is too complex for me to do justice in a few lines, but there’s a great synopsis HERE. (There are also other titles about Virginia Woolf and Vita Sackville-West on the same Amazon page.)
 
Still as fascinating as ever. (And the sets of the BBC series are as fantastic as the storyline!)
 
LIVING IN SQUARES. AMBERLEY PUBLISHERS
JULY 2015
 
 
GREAT GARDENS OF LONDON: A LUSH LOOK AT THE HORTICULTURAL CAPITAL OF THE WORLD
 
{CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE THEM}
 
I want this book. Badly. It’s beautiful. The images are lavish (many are double-page spreads), the gardens are lovely, and London, well, it has been my home and remains one of my favorite cities.
 
The best bit about the book is that authors Victoria Summerley, Hugo Rittson Thomas and Marianne Majors have managed to obtain permission to shoot many private gardens in the city, as well as some much-loved public ones. Accompanying the photographs are essays on the design and planting schemes that explain the designers’ inspiration, ideas and designs.
 
Just lovely.
 
GREAT GARDENS OF LONDON. PUBLISHED BY FRANCES LINCOLN.
OCT 2015
 
 
JULIA REED’S SOUTH: A SOUTHERN GUIDE TO GRAND ENTERTAINING
 
I love Julia Reed. Her writing is witty, warm and spiked with funny stories. Her home in the Garden District of New Orleans was magnificent too. And her book on Furlow Gatewood remains an all-time favourite.
 
This new book isn’t out until 2016, but mark it on your Wish Lists; it’s certain to be as riveting as the rest of her writing. Julia and fellow photographer Paul Costello have spent months shooting at various locations in the Deep South, including many gardens, and the images are just lush!
 
Look at the cover. Doesn’t that make you want to visit the South?
 
JULIA REED’S SOUTH. PUBLISHED BY RIZZOLI
2016
 
 
 
LEE: A NEW LOOK AT LEE RADZIWILL
 
I can’t say much about this new title as very little has been released, but the images are glorious and Lee Radziwill always makes for a great story. (Her life is one long, enthralling narrative.) What its publisher Assouline has revealed is that it follows on from Lee’s best-selling Happy Times, recalling her friendships with the numerous cultural figures, from Rudolf Nureyev to Truman Capote.
 
Love the collage-style page spreads.
 
LEE. PUBLISHED BY ASSOULINE
DEC 2015.
 
 
 
MICHELE BONAN: A MONOGRAPH ABOUT THE DESIGN MIND BEHIND JK HOTELS
 
If you love the look of the JK Hotels in Capri, Rome, Florence and elsewhere (now Instagrammed and blogged to death), this is the book for you. It’s a monograph of the talented designer Michele Bonan, the magnificent design mind behind these soothingly serene hideaways, as well as others such as the Marquis Faubourg Saint-Honoré in Paris.
 
A great one for fussy travelers and discerning design lovers. I can’t wait to see a copy.
 
MICHELE BONAN. PUBLISHED BY ASSOULINE
DECEMBER 2015
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