The Blogger Book Club: Emily Henderson

I’ll admit that I don’t read many blog anymore due to my insane schedule- and like a lot of you probably do- when my work day is over I want to something not work related. But when I do find time, I go right to the long-time partners in the blog trenches whose work I really admire. Emily Henderson is one of those people. I LOVE her. Her sunny smile, disposition, funny voice and amazing talent are what makes her the superstar she is. So I was not surprised when I heard she was doing a book and knew it would be just as awesome as she is. (And she managed not only to release Styled, her fun, fab new book but also give birth to her daughter all in the same time frame!

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What I love about design is how different we all do it.  Emily’s colorful, California cool vibe is so different from what I do day-to-day but I adore it.  You know when you look at images of spaces so different from your own and think “Man, I want to live like THAT! I would be so much cooler if my house was like that one!” :)  That’s how I feel about the spaces in Emily’s book.

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And it’s a mix of spaces by different designers that look cohesive due to Emily’s ninja styling skills.  This book is more about styling your space, not top to bottom design.  Basically, how to get your space to look as “done” as those you see in magazines.  I think that last 10% of design (the styling) tends to be the hardest for people to do- which is what makes this book handy!

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Having been through the book process I know what it’s like to have to pick certain images to use and others that you have to trash.  It’s painful!  You have all these fantastic shots but for one reason or another some end up on the cutting room floor.  Emily sent over these exclusive outtakes from her book editing process- ones that didn’t make it in but that she still loves.

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This one is SO good- can you imagine sitting her with a glass of wine after a long day and looking at a magazine or chatting with friends? DIE.

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Two Books to Add to Your Coffee Table

Or your bookshelf. Wherever you keep your favorite design books (like mine, perhaps, *ahem*).  This fall we will see many of my favorite bloggers release books, including these two- Lauren Liess’ Habitat and Eddie Ross’ Modern Mix.  I was lucky to get advance copies of both of these and can tell you they are both AMAZING, AWESOME and ones you need to purchase.  Knowing how much work, drive and tears goes into getting a book completed and published, I am so happy to help promote these gorgeous tomes.

First up, Lauren’s book.  The cover is beautiful and the interior only gets more so. She is such a crazy talent- the girls in my office ripped this package open faster than a Kardashian can take a selfie.  We all oooohhhed and ahhhhhhed over all of Lauren’s gorgeous work.


There is so much fantastic layering of textures and antiques in her rooms.  And this book also has tons of tips, advice and sources to help you acquire this look.


15 Great Reads.

Reading is one of the few activities that really allows my brain to take a break from over-thinking (ok, other than Angry Birds).  I’ve been a voracious reader almost as long as I can remember and probably plow through a book a week even at my busiest times.  I always make time to read before I go to bed at night- sometimes for 10 minutes, other times for two hours (when I’m reading something REALLY amazing).  Nothing is more relaxing to me.  So I thought I’d pull together some of my most favorite reads from over the years for you in case you are looking for a good book.  I omitted some of the obvious ones ( Eat, Pray, Love and Unbroken, the two biggies that I’ve talked about many times) and some most recent reads I really enjoyed (like Amy Poehler’s awesomely funny book and the new Jodi Picoult that was really quite good!)  This is a mix of really deep, sad, funny, scary, light and introspective reads that I think stand the test of time.  What are some of your all time favorite books?


The Kitchen House– A fantastic book about slavery and the power of taking risks and standing up for what you believe in.

The Language of Flowers– Phenomenally lovely. A must for any woman.

She’s Come Undone- The first book I remember being totally bowled over by. I haven;t read it in 20 years and will re-read it again soon.

Sharp Objects– I loved Gone Girl, but I loved this one MORE. So messed up, creepy and will keep you up reading all night to finish it.

Room– Tough to read if you are a mother (I assume) but a truly awesome book. Wow.

Girl With A Pearl Earring– I didn’t read this for years assuming it was boring. It was NOT.  Wonderfully nuanced and very interesting.

The Light Between Oceans– I talk about this book ALL THE TIME. Amazing. Fascinating. A tale that leaves you wondering what YOU would do and the difference between right and wrong. I pray this becomes a movie.

Cutting For Stone– A heavy, dense read that takes a little time to get into but then it swallows you whole. Patience pays off with this one. Incredible.

The Orphan Train– I just read this recently and LOVED it. An interesting and trying story about children, family and bravery.

Bossypants– Do I even need to go into this one? :)

The Prince of Tides– A classic… for a reason! I just read it last year and LOVED Conroy’s writing.

Me Talk Pretty One Day– My favorite from one of my favorite writers.  The book that made me fall in love with humorous short story writing.

Little Bee– Brutally moving and phenomenally written. Beats your heart up, but SO incredible.

A Girl Named Zippy– A little book that gave me HUGE laughs. Not many other people have read this, and I can’t remember who told me to read it but I’m glad they did.

The Good House– A really engaging tale of alcoholism and family… I know that doesn’t sound awesome, but it really is!


24 Great Coffee Table Books

Books are wonderful for so many reasons- intellectual stimulation, education, visual delight….and decoration. Yes, books are amazing objects of decor on top of being wonderful to pass time looking at and reading. The two things that most liven up and add depth to spaces are plants and books. So here are 24 great books that are interesting to read and are AWESOME for your decor too.  I tried to pick a selection that I haven’t seen ad-nauseum (we all have the Domino book already, right?)


1. // 2. // 3. //4. //5. // 6. // 7. // 8. // 9. // 10. // 11. // 12. // 13. // 14. // 15. // 16. // 17. // 18. // 19. // 20. // 21. // 22. // 23. // 24I had to, we just designed the back cover and it’s AMAZING!

A Public Service Announcement

Dear Ladies of Planet Earth,

If your husband bugs you for months on end to please watch Suits on USA with him, you really shouldn’t blindly resist, tell him it’s a stupid boy show about lawyers and be a jerk about it like I was. You should listen to him. You wanna know why?

Exhibit A: Gabriel Macht a.k.a Harvey Specter.  GUH.


Exhibit B: Gabriel Macht a.k.a Harvey Specter in a variety of Tom Ford suits that are the best example on TV of how men should dress for biz-ness. Or anything. Because he’s perfect. A modern day Don Draper if you will. But slightly less douchey.


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Exhibit C: Donna and everything she says and every face she makes.


Seriously, it’s such a funny, awesome show.  The relationship and chemistry between Harvey and his underling Mike Ross is so great and the writing is smart. I am OBSESSED. Like, first two seasons of Scandal obsessed (unlike season three of Scandal which has totally jumped the shark for me). Watch it.  Revisit Exhibit A if you still have any doubts.


Erin Gates

P.S. Sorry Andrew, but really this whole schoolgirl crush  is all your fault.

P.P.S. (also to Andrew) I am pretty sure your crush on Harvey runs deeper than even mine.

P.P.S.S. Gabriel Macht would have been the best Batman. I love ya Ben Affleck, but no.

Ok I’ll stop now.

And for those who, like me, like to chase a gluttonous TV show binge with something a bit more, ah, cerebral, in an attempt to feel less gross about yourself, I highly recommend Dan Harris’ book 10% Happier.  I know from the amazing responses my post about anxiety received that a lot of you struggle with it too, and this is such a funny, witty, interesting story about one TV anchors journey of self-awareness and acceptance via meditation.  It’s an easy, great read that has some very interesting theories.