In these pages, the beloved Bill Bryson gives us a fascinating history of the modern home, taking us on a room-by-room tour through his own house and using each room to explore the vast history of the domestic artifacts we take for granted. As he takes us through the history of our modern comforts, Bryson demonstrates that whatever happens in the world eventually ends up in our home, in the paint, the pipes, the pillows, and every item of furniture. Bryson has one of the liveliest, most inquisitive minds on the planet, and his sheer prose fluency makesÂ At HomeÂ one of the most entertaining books ever written about private life. Amazon Best Books of the Month, October 2010: Bill Bryson (A Short History of Nearly Everything) turns his attention from science to society in his authoritative history of domesticity, At Home: A Short History of Private Life. While walking through his own home, a former Church of England rectory built in the 19th century, Bryson reconstructs the fascinating history of the household, room by room. With waggish humor and a knack for unearthing the extraordinary stories behind the seemingly commonplace, he examines how everyday items--things like ice, cookbooks, glass windows, and salt and pepper--transformed the way people lived, and how houses evolved around these new commodities. "Houses are really quite odd things," Bryson writes, and, luckily for us, he is a writer who thrives on oddities. He gracefully draws connections between an eclectic array of events that have affected home life, covering everything from the relationship between cholera outbreaks and modern landscaping, to toxic makeup, highly flammable hoopskirts, and other unexpected hazards of fashion. Fans of Bryson's travel writing will find plenty to love here; his keen eye for detail and delightfully wry wit emerge in the most unlikely places, making At Home an engrossing journey through history, without ever leaving the house. --Lynette Mong
For nearly five decades Barbra Streisand has been one of the singular figures in American entertainment. From the cabaret to the Broadway stage, from television and film stardom to her acclaimed work as a director, from the recording studio to the concert hall, she has demonstrated that the extraordinary voice that launched her career was only one of her remarkable gifts. Now, in her first book, Barbra Streisand reveals another aspect of her talent: the taste and style that have inspired her beautiful homes and collections. My Passion for Design focuses on the architecture and construction of her newest homes, the dream refuge that she has longed for since the days when she shared a small Brooklyn apartment with her mother, brother, and grandparents. A culmination and reflection of Streisand's love of American architecture and design between the eighteenth and twentieth centuries, the book contains many of her own photographs of the rooms she has decorated, the furniture and art she has collected, and the ravishing gardens she has planted on her land on the California coast. In addition to glimpses of her homes, Barbra shares memories of her childhood, the development of her sense of style, and what collecting has come to mean to her. My Passion for Design is a rare and intimate private tour into the world of one of our most beloved stars. It will be welcomed by her many fans and all lovers of the great achievements of American design.
In the woods, on a mountaintop, or at the waterâ€™s edge, a small cabin can fulfill big dreams. With attention to efficient living and minimizing energy footprints, Gerald Rowan provides 62 designs for compact and creative buildings that are flexible enough to fit whatever your needs may be. Rowan includes detailed floor plans with plenty of modular elements that make the designs adaptable and easy to recreate with cost-effective, low-maintenance materials. Make the most of the cabin you call home, regardless of its size.
Does your home tell the story of who you are? Â In The Things That Matter, Nate Berkus shares intimate stories from his life, introduces us to people who influenced him and helped him forge his sense of style, and opens up about the remarkable experiences that have left him forever changed, all of which find expression in how he lives today. From his most cherished flea market finds, to his beloved books and photos, to the many extraordinary mementos heâ€™s collected in his travels, every piece defines who heâ€™s become and what endures in his world. Â Berkus invites readers into his own home as well as into twelve others, including a sleek steel-and-glass high-rise that soars above Chicago, a rustic cottage in the Hudson Valley, an ultra-chic atelier that maximizes every inch of space, a Greenwich Village townhouse that holds multiple art collections, and a study in meaningful minimalism in Marfa, Texas. The distinctive interiors beautifully displayed in this book offer revealing portraits of their ownersâ€™ lives and the inspiring choices that have made them who they are today. Â The Things That Matter convincingly lays out Nate Berkusâ€™s philosophy that things do matter. Our homes tell our stories, they reflect the places weâ€™ve been and the people weâ€™ve loved along the wayâ€”and there can be no more beautiful design for living than that.NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE SEATTLE TIMES Samples from The Things That Matter Â
There's a grassroots movement in tiny homes these days. The real estate collapse, the economic downturn, burning out on 12-hour workdays -- many people are rethinking their ideas about shelter -- seeking an alternative to high rents, or a lifelong mortgage debt to a bank on an overpriced home.In this book are some 150 builders who have taken things into their own hands, creating tiny homes (under 500 sq. ft.). Homes on land, homes on wheels, homes on the road, homes on water, even homes in the trees. There are also studios, saunas, garden sheds, and greenhouses.There are 1,300 photos, showing a rich variety of small homemade shelters, and there are stories (and thoughts and inspirations) of the owner-builders who are on the forefront of this new trend in downsizing and self-sufficiency.At the heart of our 1973 book Shelter were drawings of 5 small buildings, which we recommended as a starting point in providing one's own home. Now, almost 40 years later, there's a growing tiny house movement all over the world -- which we've been tracking over the past two years.Many people have decided to scale back, to get by with less stuff, to live in smaller homes. You can buy aÂ Â ready-made tiny home, build your own, get a kit or pre-fab, or live in a bus, houseboat, or other movable shelter. Some cities have special ordinances for building "inlaw" or "granny flats" in the back yard. There are innovative solutions in cities, such as the "capsules" in Tokyo. There are numerous blogs and websites with news, photos, and/or plans for tiny homes, documented here.If you're thinking of scaling back, you'll find plenty of inspiration here. Here's a different approach, a 180Âº turn from increasing consumption. Here are builders, designers, architects (no less), dreamers, artists, road gypsies, and water dwellers who've achieved a measure of freedom and independence by taking shelter into their own hands.
Part how-to, part personal memoir, The Big Tiny is an utterly seductive meditation on the benefits of slowing down, scaling back, and appreciating the truly important things in life.Â More than ten years ago, a near-death experience abruptly reminded sustainability advocate and pioneer Dee Williams that life is short. So, she sold her sprawling home and built an eighty-four-square-foot houseâ€”on her own, from the ground up. Today, Williams can list everything she owns on one sheet of paper, her monthly housekeeping bills amount to about eight dollars, and it takes her about ten minutes to clean the entire house. Adapting a new lifestyle left her with the ultimate luxuryâ€”more time to spend with friends and familyâ€”and gave her the freedom to head out for adventure at a momentâ€™s notice, or watch the clouds and sunset while drinking a beer on her (yes, tiny) front porch.
Cabin Porn: Inspiration for Your Quiet Place Somewhere
Manufacturer: Little, Brown and Company
Brand: Little Brown and Company
Rural escapes for those yearning for a simpler existence, by the creators of the wildly popular tumblr Cabin Porn.Created by a group of friends who preserve 55 acres of hidden forest in Upstate New York-Cabin Porn began as a scrapbook to collect inspiration for their building projects. As the collection grew, the site attracted a following, which is now a huge and obsessive audience.The site features photos of the most remarkable handmade homes in the backcountry of America and all over the world. It has had over 10 million unique visitors, with 350,000 followers on Tumblr. Now Zach Klein, the creator of the site (and a co-founder of Vimeo) goes further into the most alluring images from the site and new getaways, including more interior photography and how-to advice for setting up a quiet place somewhere. With their idyllic settings, unique architecture and cozy interiors, the Cabin Porn photographs, are an invitation to slow down, take a deep breath, and feel the beauty and serenity that nature and simple construction can create.
One Man's Folly: The Exceptional Houses of Furlow Gatewood
Brand: Rizzoli International Publications
When it comes to interiors style, antiques, and Southern vernacular architecture, Furlow Gatewood is a one-of-a-kind classic-this book presents his magical private enclave for the first time. Antiques expert Furlow Gatewood's highly personal property in bucolic Americus, Georgia, where he has meticulously restored his family's carriage house and added intimate dwellings and outbuildings-several rescued from demolition-has evolved over decades to become a sublime expression of stylish living. The structures exemplify various architectural traditions-from mid-nineteenth-century Gothic to Palladian. He has collaborated with local craftsmen to create these follies and takes delight in designing the picturesque grounds and plantings and in devising comfortable areas for his beloved dogs and peacocks. A gifted designer and longtime associate of antiques dealer John Rosselli, Gatewood has a talent for discovering singular pieces with a poetic patina, composing custom paint finishes and subtle palettes, and knowing how to incorporate distinctive architectural elements. To accompany the book's atmospheric images, close friend Bunny Williams writes about the lessons she has learned from this master of discernment. Gatewood's seductive and hospitable Arcadian oasis, with its exquisite and timeless design, will have an enduring impact on the design community.
Inside Tiny House Floor Plans you'll find over 200 interior designs for tiny houses - 230 to be exact. A tiny house is exactly what it sounds like, a house with many of the amenities youâ€™d expect in a home tucked neatly into a super small space. Often these homes are built on trailers giving them the added benefit of mobility. But these designs could also be built on your choice of foundation. Each chapter focuses on one size footprint to show what can be done inside each size space - 14 in all, (8x12, 8x16, 8x20, 8x24, 8x28, 8x32, 12x12, 12x12 + Loft, 12x16, 12x16 + Loft, 12x20, 12x20 + Loft, 12x24, 12x24 + Loft). The book is mostly illustrations with a short introduction. A detailed legend shows you how to read the floor plans making each drawing a wealth of information on how to pack a lot of utility into a tiny space. If you're considering simplifying your life, extreme downsizing, arranging your tiny apartment more efficiently, building a cabin or inlaw unit, and/or building your own mortgage-free tiny home, this book can help give you a head start on making your goals a reality.