Thursday, August 01, 2013

In with the Old : Classic Decor from A to Z



After a year of hard work, late nights, early mornings, and weekends spent sitting in front of a computer, I can finally share with you a very special project on which I have been working: I wrote a book.

I’ve had book ideas swirling around in my head for years, but it took me some time to organize my thoughts and to cajole them onto paper. I wanted to write a book that was different and unique. The book needed to be smart and informative, but, more important, a fun read, too. And, it had to be in the spirit of those classic decorating guides that still inspire us today. (That upbeat enthusiasm of Dorothy Draper was very much on my mind as I wrote this book, especially during those times when I was fighting “the will to be dreary”!) Now that my book is written, I believe that I can say I achieved all of my goals. I hope that you will agree.

My book, titled In with the Old: Classic Decor from A to Z, will be released on October 22 both in the U.S. as well as Canada, the U.K., and Australia. (A big thank you to Clarkson Potter for publishing it and to Alexa Hampton who generously wrote the book’s foreword!) The book profiles one hundred classic decorative styles and details, all of which have illustrious histories and which still look very stylish today. Included are entries on trompe l’oeil, campaign furniture, verre églomisé, tented rooms, and the like. For each decorative element, I take you through its history and explain what makes it timeless and how you can decorate and live with it in ways that are modern and fresh. The great decorators and aesthetes whom I so admire, including Elsie de Wolfe, Albert Hadley, Van Day Truex, Angelo Donghia, Fowler and Lancaster, Mario Buatta, Diana Vreeland, and Bunny Mellon, are all very much present in this book, too, for I included all of the wonderful ways in which these style setters have used classic decoration to sublime effect.

And, because no design book is complete without art, each entry is accompanied by either an original photograph (shot at some very fetching Atlanta homes) or an original illustration. I’m proud to say that my sister painted all of the illustrations, while photographer Erica George Dines shot the photos. In fact, two of my sister’s illustrations made the cover.

I am currently planning my book tour, and I hope that my lectures and book signings around the country will give me the opportunity to meet many of you in person. I’ll keep you posted on events and will share some excerpts from the book over the next few months, but in the meantime, I invite you to visit the online book sites below so that you can learn more about my book. Many thanks for your readership and your support!

In with the Old: Classic Decor from A to Z on Amazon

In with the Old: Classic Decor from A to Z on Barnes & Noble

In with the Old: Classic Decor from A to Z on Indiebound

80 comments:

  1. So looking forward to this book! Congratulations! As the occasional supplier of cocktails during your process I know how hard you worked.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Blue! You have been very supportive of this endeavor, especially considering that your work appears in this book.

      Delete
  2. I expect a signed 1st edition young lady! Congrats to you and I hope to see you soon! xx.DT

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You got it DT! Thank you! Looking forward to seeing you in Atlanta very soon.

      Delete
  3. Huge congrats Jennifer - while I had heard through the design world pipeline, nice to see the book jacket and pub date! And how convenient to have such a talented sister!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Stacey! Hope our paths cross soon...finally!

      Delete
  4. How exciting, congrats! I didn't know you had such a talented sister that you've been hiding from us! Hope your travels bring you to DC so we can catch up. Let me know if you need any help with anything here.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Stefan, Thank you so much! I would love to make it to DC, especially to see you!

      Delete
  5. Congratulations! I love the book. It speaks to all of us who relish the elements of decorating that make a room special. And, it's a timeless guide for anyone who wants to know more about great design.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Fantastic! And what a chic cover!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. John, Many thanks! Hopefully I'll get to Memphis and have the chance to see you again!

      Delete
  7. So thrilled for you! I can't wait to see the book! And it's being published on my b-day, so I will have to order a copy for myself!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Meg, The fact that the publication date is your birthday is a very good sign!

      Delete
  8. Your book looks fantastic, a must for my library! Congrats!

    Mary Jane McCarty

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mary Jane, Thank you so much!

      Delete
  9. Dear Jennifer, Congratulations! Team Fromental is placing it's pre-order this pm.
    Design books and books on Designers inform our work and creations on a daily basis,so thank you for what you will be bringing to us!
    Kind regards
    Lizzie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Lizzie! That means a lot to me!

      Delete
  10. I just pre-ordered "In With The Old"--I know that it is going to be my new go-to reference. After following The Peak of Chic for almost 6 years, I'm guessing that this work is going to be a stunner. Any plans for a book signing in Los Angeles? Congratulations! How did you keep this secret?
    Mary

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mary, I hope you like the book. And I do hope to get to L.A., if not late this year then early next year. It was very hard to keep this a secret! :)

      Delete
  11. Book it! Looking forward to reading your book because I've certainly enjoy reading your blog.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Home, Thank you!!! And thank you for your always thoughtful blog comments.

      Delete
  12. Congrats Jennifer. Can't wait to get it! Richard Rabel

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Richard! Hope you're having a nice Summer.

      Delete
  13. Warmest congratulations, Jennifer! Just yesterday I was wondering what you do when you aren't writing TPoC or working on HB things. You don't advertise on your site, (much appreciated btw) so I dreamt up an obscenely extravagant trust fund left for you by an exotic collector of rarities and curiosities LOL...but I really was praying you were writing a book. I shall spend the next few very anxious months as I await its delivery to my door (ordered and paid for) praying you will come to the Phoenix area. Oh dear, I believe I may be a groupie!
    Seriously, the design world was waiting for this, and everyone is thrilled for you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dana, How nice of you! And the idea of an extravagant trust fund left to me by an exotic collector of rarities is a really nice fantasy! I will keep you posted on any talks or signings in Phoenix. I have never been there, and I would love to visit.

      Delete
  14. Anonymous10:33 AM

    Congratulations Jennifer! I've just pre-ordered my copy!
    Excited for you,
    Margaret Kaufman

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Margaret! Hope to see you around town soon. :)

      Delete
  15. Well done! Looking forward to reading this. Great Stuff. Congratulations. Have pre-ordered.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Luke! Perhaps I'll get to the U.K. for a book signing. If so, you and the Mrs. must come!

      Delete
  16. Jennifer--How fantastic.
    It is going to be wonderful.
    I love the idea of illustration..so chic!
    The cover is terrific--and it will be a great success.
    Looking forward to seeing you on your book tour.
    Great success will follow!
    very best, DIANE

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Diane! You have always been such an inspiration to me.

      Delete
  17. Congratulations! Hope you are dropping by NYC on your book tour. Look forward to meeting you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Painted Finish, I will definitely be in NYC late this fall. I will keep you posted via the blog. I look forward to meeting you, too!

      Delete
  18. How very exciting! This books sounds so much like who you are and I imagine that there will be more books in the future - but lets not get ahead of ourselves. Putting this on my wishlist!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Capella! Hope you're having a nice summer!

      Delete
  19. many congratulations, I know all the hard work that went into the making of this book. xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

    ReplyDelete
  20. Jennifer!

    What a fabulous surprise! I had no idea, but of course, cannot wait to get a copy, and then several more for the perfect upcoming holiday gifts! Congratulations on your huge accomplishment!

    Dean (not a robot)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Dean, a million thanks! Maybe I'll get down to Naples. And you are far from a robot! ;)

      Delete
  21. Jennifer, congratulations on your huge accomplishment! What an exciting time for you and I can't wait to get a look at the book!
    Holly

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Holly! So kind of you!

      Delete
  22. Hip Hip Hooray, Hip Hip Hooray, Hip Hip Hooray.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Terry! Hope to bump into you soon! Maybe during the move of the Lucas House?

      Delete
  23. Pamela2:04 PM

    Fantabulosa! Can't wait to get my hands on a copy. And use it! The cover is splendid. Marvelous. Marvelous news.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Pamela! I'm very proud of the cover, especially since my sister's work is on it!

      Delete
  24. maven6:16 PM

    Cool, cool, cool!

    I just pre-ordered your book. The book description on Amazon sounds wonderful and mentioned the long forgotten magic words "house stationery"!!! Be still my beating heart.

    Congratulations - I am so happy for you! (I, too, hope that you get to DC for a book signing party.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maven, I love house stationery, too! I hope to make it to DC and meet you, too!

      Delete
  25. Congratulations! You have realized the dream of many designers and how exciting to include your talented sister as well. I look forward to seeing the book on the shelves.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Diane! I am very lucky to have worked with my very talented sister. :)

      Delete
  26. Alan Dailey9:10 PM

    congratulation on the fruition of all your hard work! I am so excited about this book and I am also excited for you. I am all about timeless & classic decor. You have such an educated eye, as well as an unprecidented appreciation of classic design. I know that no one would have done this book better than you. Please keep us posted on your upcoming events. Also, you look absolutely fabulous in your new picture.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awww, thank you Alan! I am blushing!

      I certainly will keep everyone posted on events. Would love to finally meet you in person!

      Delete
  27. Hey Jennifer:

    Congratulations on your new book...how exciting indeed! Love the cover, your sisters are both very talented as well. Looking foward to one of your many book signings here in Atlanta.

    Lisa

    P.S. I don't know if I ever told you this but your one of the first blogs I ever read...whew! How long ago was that?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lisa, Many thanks! I look forward to seeing you at one of the events in Atlanta.

      Thank you as well for being a long-time reader. It was close to 7 years ago, I think. Sometimes, it seems like 70!

      Delete
  28. Dear Jennifer,

    Congratulations on your book! This is so exciting. I have added it to the top of my must read list.

    All the best,

    Michael

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Michael, Thank you so much! Hope you are having a nice summer.

      Delete
  29. Well that is what I call exciting news. You always write with style and grace at Peak of Chic, so this book is something to look forward to!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Toby! You have been very support of PoC through the years.

      Delete
  30. OH MY GOODNESS!!!!!!! Congrats! I am going to buy it!!!! CAN"T WAIT

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cynthia, Thank you for your enthusiasm and support! It means a lot to me!

      Delete
  31. Jennifer Dengel12:02 PM

    Jennifer, I am SO happy for you and I know that the book will be a great success and become a classic. Love the cover! Btw, I read all of the comments--can't you just feel the love! Congratulations!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jennifer, Yes, all of the comments make me very happy. Hope to see you soon!

      Delete
  32. My instant reaction was actually quite emotional. I thought, "After all Jennifer's incredible generosity in blogging for us, here is an opportunity for everyone to show how much they appreciate her in buying her book". How lovely to see your extraordinary talent embodied in this exciting looking volume and all that hard work vindicated. I know you will surprise us!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rose, What a nice comment. Really lovely. Perhaps my book tour will take me to the UK so that you and I can finally meet in person!

      Delete
  33. Mondo congratulations, Jennifer!! You've been educating us all for years -- I can't wait to lay hands on this book!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Nick! Mighty sweet of you!

      Delete
  34. Congratulations!! Looking forward to it!

    ReplyDelete
  35. Anonymous5:06 PM

    Congratulations on the completion of your first foray into publishing. With Blue serving up some adult beverages to get you through those moments of writer's freeze, it's bound to be superb in every way. I especially love the cover of your book and would love to hear how you went through the design process. I am so looking forward to receiving a copy in October.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are most kind! Blue's libations did indeed help me get past any writer's block!

      Delete
  36. Anonymous5:38 PM

    Congratulations! You were one of the first design blogs I read, and I am excited for you and us.

    Elizabeth

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Elizabeth, a million thanks!

      Delete
  37. The big reveal, very much looking forward to peeking inside the beautiful cover to see it all come to life- very exciting
    x Marisa

    ReplyDelete
  38. Thank you Marisa! Hope to see you soon!

    ReplyDelete
  39. Looking forward to The Book. I love the idea of the illustrations too-what a great family endeavor. I know it will be a great success. pgt

    ReplyDelete
  40. Dear Jennifer,

    I've been reading your blog for years, it was the first blog I ever read and the one I like the most. I love your style, your taste and the way you write. You have been responsible for much of my interior decor education so I am very much looking forward to reading your book.

    One of the remarkable things about your blog - other than your extensive knowledge and research - is that you come across as a really nice and kind person and that the success of your blog has not changed you. You are always unfailingly graceful and that for me is important because, to really like a blog, I need to like the person who writes it.

    Also, another thing which makes you different to other design bloggers is that we you show photographs of your apartment or the reforms you've made, they are nice and in good taste. In other blogs the blogger's home is sometimes a let down. You preach what you do.

    Anyway, after reading in silence for so many years I thought the book news was a good time to finally write and thank you for all the good times you've given us.

    You have even inspired me to write my own blog (in Spanish and written in Spain, so no competition... not that I could ever compete with the Peak of Chic!).

    Looking forward to reading your book.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Beatriz, What a very nice, thoughtful comment. I hope that I'm deserving of all of your kind words!

      I very much appreciate your support. I am lucky to have such nice, knowledgeable readers.

      Best Wishes,
      Jennifer

      Delete
  41. Sherry Dashiell10:57 AM

    Jennifer - I am embarrassed to say that I have never really read design books, although coffee table "picture" books have always been a major part of my library that I can't get enough of and love looking at and studying the photos. Until now, that is! Your book was like a fabulous mystery novel - a page-turner that I could NOT put down until I had read and studied every single page. It was fabulous, and I am so sad I've finished it - I want more! I am also a Southern girl with a love for all things old. My mother taught me well, as she was an avid collector of all things fine and beautiful and old, so it is in my blood. In your book you covered everything I could think of, and as I read I walked around my house to see things I have that you noted in your book. Now I have discovered your blog, thank you! I will check into "The Peak of Chic" daily ... keep writing! Sherry Dashiell, Tryon, NC

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sherry, What a nice comment! I am so flattered, but more important, I am thrilled that you enjoyed reading the book. My goal was to make the book both informative and light-hearted. I'm so pleased that you liked it!
      From one Southern girl to another, thank you!
      Best Wishes, Jennifer

      Delete