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Holiday Reads For Design And Architecture Lovers, Part Two
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Holiday Reads For Design And Architecture Lovers, Part Two

Picture of Amber C. Snider
Home & Design Editor
Updated: 12 July 2017
Whether you need serious organizational inspiration or a timeless, high-brow design tome to adorn your coffee table, Home & Design Editor Amber C. Snider has curated a new book list to suit everyone’s aesthetic. Here is part two of Culture Trip’s 2016 holiday reads for architecture and design lovers.

The Monocle Guide to Cosy Homes


A guide meant to inspire and offer a highly local vision of homes, Monocle’s Guide to Cosy Homes showcases residences that “just get it right,” while offering pointers on how to recreate the look at home. As a balance between the “inspirational and practical,” the 400-page book explores the tangible yet elusive idea of cosiness as an atmosphere rather than strict ‘design’. The opening manifesto proclaims that “homes are for living in” and “should be a celebration of the durable and the meaningful”; it’s those exact sentiments that reflect not only the design/construct of the book itself, but also the content within this modern, yet timeless staple. Perfect for your most sophisticated friend, homeowners looking for high-brow DIY inspiration, and any classic design lover.

From The Monocle Guide to Cosy Homes, © Gestalten 2015
From The Monocle Guide to Cosy Homes, | © Gestalten 2015

Rock the Shack, ed. S. Borges & S. Borges


Rock the Shack features the best in weekend homes, humble abodes, and get-away retreats from around the world. From luxury seaside abodes to rustic mountain cabins, these stunning visual projects are sure to tempt any city-dweller to drop everything and just go. Geographical location plays a big role in the design of most of these homes, as the architecture melds with the surrounding landscapes. With an array of treehouses, cottages, shelters, cocoons, and cabins, Rock The Shack is sure to inspire dreamy house-envy, while also giving you ideas for your own perfect second-home. Perfect for your “I can’t wait to get out the city every weekend” friend or your nature loving design aficionado.

Rock the Shack, © Gestalten 2013
Rock the Shack. Rt Image, Architect Leo Caíllard, Miami Life Guard Houses; All Images | © Gestalten 2013

Black and White (and a Bit in Between): Timeless Interiors, Dramatic Accents, and Stylish Collections, by Celerie Kemble

Potter Style

Just like with fashion and film, black and white in the home will never go out of style. Black and White (and a Bit in Between) explores the timeless, iconic aesthetic of black and white in design, with over 350 pages of color photographs. Acclaimed interior designer Celerie Kemble features the work of Mary McDonald, Victoria Hagan, Mark Hampton, Delphine Krakoff, Brad Ford, Philip Gorrivan, Carrier and Co., and Miles Redd, among others, in 100 unique spaces that show off the “limitless palette” of (yes, you guessed it) black and white. Featuring the “grand historic and contemporary black and white residences,” Kemble trades in her signature color-pops for a vivid showcasing of this minimalist color scheme. Prepare to become inspired while perusing the grand designs, and reading the expert, witty advice on how you can obtain the aesthetic at home. Perfect for new homeowners and your design-savvy friend whose wardrobe also never ventures far from the greyscale.

© Potter Style

Where They Create, Japan, by Paul Barbera

Frame Publishers

Where They Create, Japan explores the workspaces of leading Japanese designers, artists, and architects, with interviews that reveal their inspirations, aesthetics, and vision. Modern Japanese design primarily engages with balance: structure and spontaneity, minimal and futuristic, tradition and invention, all with an international focus. Within the 300 pages of Where They Create, Japan, this sense of harmonious duality becomes apparent while exploring how creative spaces affect creativity. Author Paul Barbera acknowledges that when it comes to creativity “not everything needs to be explained nor put into boxes, and boundaries are often blurred.” A refreshing exploration of non-Western design, this new book from Frame publishers is a must-have for Japanese design lovers.

© Frame Publishers
© Frame Publishers

Complete Zaha Hadid, by Aaron Betsky

If you love everything Hadid, this is a staple for any architecture lover’s library. Known as the “Queen of the Curve,” Hadid’s most notable designs include the Heydar Aliyev Culture Center in Azerbaijan, the MAXXI National Museum in Rome, Guangzhou Opera House in China, and the London Aquatics Center. A perfect homage to the Iraqi-born architect, Hadid is perhaps the most prolific (and controversial) designer of the century.

© Thames & Hudson

The Complete Book of Home Organization: 200+ Tips and Projects, by Toni Hammersley

Weldon Owen

We all, sooner or later, succumb to clutter in our lives. It’s simply the nature of living in a space. Rather than accept the fact that your closets and attic will perhaps always be in a disarray, you can take action with The Complete Book of Home Organization. Learn how to “live large in a small space,” improvise a nightstand, and organize a child’s closet, among other practical must-knows, with this essential design book that provides a 15-week total home organization challenge. Hammersley breaks down the best ways to organize the 30 main spaces of your home, covering “every nook and cranny,” from the basement to your attic, for serious de-cluttered living advice. The life manual is perfect for homemakers, your most disorganized friend who needs a few tips, and the practical and down-to-earth design lover in your life.

© Weldon Owen

The Hinterland


Featuring the ultimate “hideaways,” designed to rejuvenate the human spirit, The Hinterland presents the best in cabin architecture. These homey hideouts and refuges are not only inspirational, but showcase (and encourage) design’s symbiotic relationship with nature. Each of these homes offer a livable opportunity for meaningful reconnection with nature, as the book chronicles “invitingly inventive” designs set atop mountains, perched on peaks, and nestled in verdant forests. Through portraits of the homes’ inhabitants, The Hinterland thoughtfully weaves together the human experience of architecture, and is an easy book to fall in love with. Perfect for nature-lovers, rustic types, and romantics.

The Hinterland. Rt image: architecture by Lilah Horwitz & Nick Olson; All Photos | © Gestalten 2016

For part one of the Holiday Reads For Design And Architecture Lovers, click here.