6 new books to inspire a fresh look at your surroundings, both indoors and out


With spring fast approaching, we’re seeking inspiration from new books that encourage fresh, considered ideas for your home

 words Catherine Coyle 

Stills by Mary Jo Hoffman, £39.95, Monacelli

It has taken Mary Jo Hoffman a decade to put together this wonderfully understated book. The aeronautical engineer-turned-artist made the decision to document nature every single day, taking time to observe and appreciate the world around her.

This ritual has evolved; her original blog has grown into Still, a beautifully executed volume that, in an era of continuous digital stimulation, encourages readers to pause, revel in the beauty of small, often overlooked things, and enjoy a moment of respite. Bliss.

The House Romantic by Haskell Harris, £35, Abrams

The way we view our homes is changing. It’s less about matching and more about meaning; flaunting brand names is out, and individuality, one-off pieces and a move towards authenticity is in.

But how do you create that look? What is required to give your interiors that unique stamp that is visually appealing and also pleasing to you, the person who lives there? Haskell Harris is here to help.

Her advice, practical instructions and simple techniques, collected over two decades spent working in lifestyle magazines, give a glimpse of a different sort of homemade home – one that oozes charm, warmth and absolute originality.

Never Too Small by Joel Beath and Camilla Janse van Vuuren, £30 Smith Street Books

There must be truth in the old adage that ‘size isn’t everything’ since this is the second instalment of Joel Beath and Camilla Janse van Vuuren’s book Never Too Small.

Here, they share 30 case studies demonstrating exactly what you can achieve, even if your living space is on the diminutive side.

They’ve tracked down architects and designers to help explain the ways in which you can maximise your home’s potential with smart design hacks and well-executed tricks that will stand the test of time. One to invest in if renovations are on the to-do list.

Vignettes by Sean Scherer, £35, Vendome 

Ever wondered why a fruit bowl and some candlesticks can look so stylish in someone else’s home but not in your own?

You’re not alone – some people just seem able to put together artfully arranged nooks and crannies in their homes.

New books

So thank goodness for Sean Scherer: the owner of contemporary curiosity shop Kabinett & Kammer in the Catskills has compiled a book that spills the beans on the hidden art of creating vignettes. The photography is Scherer’s own; he’s a master at knowing how to blend texture, pattern, layering, symmetry and personality.

New books

Outdoor Interiors by Juliet Roberts, £50, Lannoo

At Homes HQ we get to look at a lot incredible homes every single day. One thing that is increasingly apparent when we consider how properties are evolving is that the boundaries are blurring.

Rooms are no longer restricted to one use (no more ‘good’ living room) and even furniture
is made with multiple functions in mind.

If you’re lucky enogh to have your own outdoor space, what better way to appreciate it than giving it a good makeover? Outdoor Interiors taps into that trend; treat your garden as you would another room and you’ll reap the benefits.

New books

Upgrade Your House, £40, Gestalten

We’re living in an age where there’s a tangible willingness to give DIY a go. Online tutorials and YouTube hacks are great go-tos for home jobs you want to have a stab at – and this new book, Upgrade Your House, will supply loads of inspiration for ways to improve your current abode.

New books

It has projects from all over the world showcasing the best renovations, rebuilds and extensions, all demonstrating clever ways to change up your own four walls. Flex that sustainability bicep by reassessing what you’ve already got and how you can improve on it, rather than buying new. You’ll feel extra smug.

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