Wednesday, August 07, 2013

I Spy...

I really enjoy decorator and writer Annie Kelly's entire Rooms to Inspire series of books, but I have to say that my favorite is probably Rooms to Inspire in the City.  And some of my favorite photos in this book (shot, of course, by Kelly's photographer husband, Tim Street-Porter) have to be those of decorator Russell Bush's home/ office on Park Avenue. (See above.)

What I would do to spend one day in that room, peeking around the book shelves and stacks, searching for titles that I might need to add to my own library.  Of course, the room's other furnishings are quite attractive too, making them the icing on the cake.  Actually, now that I look at these photos, I think that my day in Russell Bush's apartment would need to begin late afternoon on a winter's day just as dark sets in, then lingering well into the evening.  I say this because it seems this room is an ideal nighttime room, all warm light and coziness.  Well, a girl can dream, can't she?

Because I have studied these photos at length, I can share with you a few titles that I spied...just in case you want to add some new titles to your book wish list.  I know that I did, and now my wish list is up to 555 titles.  (Seriously.)  How I'm ever going to whittle this list down, I haven't a clue, especially considering that anytime I see photos of rooms filled with books, I inevitably add quite a few new titles to the list.

The Great Houses of Paris by Claude Fregnac and Wayne Andrews. (Available via Amazon and Barnes & Noble)

Italian Splendor: Great Castles, Palaces, and Villas by Roberto Schezen. (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and IndieBooks)

English Interiors 1790-1848: The Quest for Comfort by John Cornforth. (Amazon)

Paul Poiret by Yvonne Deslandres. (Amazon and Barnes & Noble)

The Early Work of Aubrey Beardsley by Aubrey Beardsley (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and IndieBound)

A History of Valentines by Ruth Webb Lee (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and IndieBound)

Photos of Russell Bush's apartment featured in Rooms to Inspire in the City by Annie Kelly, Tim Street-Porter photographer.


  1. Can you please order two copies of each? Great titles.

  2. Must get that book by Annie Kelly. Love that you gave names of the books you spied.

  3. Gorgeous and my book wish list is way too long as well!

  4. John Cornforth's English Interiors 1790-1840 is a favorite on my own
    shelf of his excellent books. The illustrations are primarily watercolours of the period covered--in fact I don't recall a single photograph, and that is
    partly what gives the book its distinction.

    1. Would it be niggling of me to voice an opinion about stacks of books piled precariously high on the floors?
      One saw that sort of thing at Keith Irvine's apartment. Never could stand it!

    2. No, not at all. I do remember seeing photos of Irvine's apartment with stacks of books everywhere. Wasn't there a photo of his books stacked along stairs, too?

      I understand that if space is lacking, book piles on the floor might be the only way in which to store books. I personally can't do it because I like to be able to easily access books.

  5. Anonymous3:36 PM

    What a wonderful and charming post, Jennifer. Also gives me great comfort as an incurable collector of books--and I suspect I am not alone...

  6. Once again my friend Mr. Worthington have 180 takes on a picture. When I saw the stacks of books on the floor I too, thought of Keith Irvine's—and Jacques Grange's—book laden rooms that feel welcoming to me. In a discussion with Mr. Worthington I once said how much I loved leopard carpets. He said they were OK as long as they didn't go too tawny. And I said, "Damn! Tawney is the best part!" Oh well, I think this means when my remodeling project is done and the new library/dining room with its leopard carpet, bookcases and books stacked underneath my console will not be up to Mr. Worthington's impeccable style. I already feel my personal FAIL start to come on. Sigh.......

    1. No, don't think for a minute that your new remodel is failing in any way! I love the idea of stacked books on the floor, but I find it difficult to store books that way because I am constantly referencing them.

      I think your scheme sounds smashing!