Better living through the 10 best interiors blogs
The daddy of interior design blogs, with the bold motto "saving the world, one room at a time", Apartment Therapy is written by a large editorial team, and it's an organised affair. This is the place to get the latest news from the biggest design events and fairs around the globe, from the Milan Furniture Fair to the International Contemporary Furniture Fair in New York. If you can't be there in person, this is the next best thing. There are daily house tours, letting you see inside beautiful homes with plenty of ideas to steal and products to buy.
Explore the sister sites, too: www.unplggd.com for home technology; www.ohdeedoh.com for children's interiors; www.re-nest.com for eco-friendly home buys, and www.thekitchn.com for cooking and dining accessories. Apartment Therapy even has its own marketplace, where readers can shop.
This comprehensive design blog is written by Holly Becker, an American living in Hanover, Germany. Since 2006, the former corporate accountant has written from the heart every day about her life, her love of decorating and the stylists, photographers and designers she admires. You'll find craft projects, galleries of inspiring homes, cute shops and emotional outpourings. Holly's open, saccharine blogging style, combined with her social-media-savvy self-promotion and her boundless enthusiasm, have earned her an enormous global fan club. She's just written her first book, Decorate (published by Chronicle Books), and - with a little help from her talented web designer husband, Thorsten - has built herself an impressive online business empire.
Holly now runs e-courses in Blogging Your Way for US$119 (Dh437) a month, teaches classes to monied wannabe bloggers in Marrakech and maintains a second blog, Haus Maus, where she documents her life as an American expatriate. How she finds time to eat or sleep is a mystery.
Another prolific female blogger is Design*Sponge's Grace Bonney, who worked for traditional homes magazines before launching her blog in 2004 to inspire and connect with fellow "design sponges" - young homeowners and renters who soak up design ideas and use them to decorate their homes.
You'll find sneak peeks into readers' homes, mini trends showing all the latest looks from around the world, city guides for insider shopping knowledge and podcasts with crafting and decorating advice. Design*Sponge promotes and encourages small businesses and makers, so check out the Scholarship scheme, intended to assist art and design students through financial support, and the Biz Ladies area, where experts share useful business advice. Bonney's first book, Design*Sponge at Home, is due out this September.
This blog offers something a little different. It's an online gallery of ultra-cool photographs of creative types - from models and designers to urban farmers and chefs - in their fabulous living spaces, taken by the New York-based photographer, Todd Selby.
Selby began the project three years ago as a website featuring photos of his friends in their homes. Requests soon began coming in from people all over the world who wanted their own homes to be featured. Selby now contributes to Vogue Paris and has recently published his first book, The Selby Is in Your Place (published by Abrams).
The interiors on this blog are fascinating, but the people in the photos are equally intriguing; some appear to be unaware of the photographer altogether and are captured going about their everyday domestic lives: watering pot plants, feeding cats or reading.
A young British interior stylist called Will Taylor runs this very visual blog, essentially a celebration of colour that reflects his charming personality, impressive social media skills and sheer enthusiasm. He blogs about inspiring interiors from all over the globe, mixing new high street collections with quirky online finds. The content is always top notch, but Taylor's contemporary blogging style really makes an impression. His slick use of fonts and his superior photo editing skills leave other homes blogs far behind. He is ahead of his time and a blogging star in the making. One to watch.
Launched in 2005 by Joy Deangdeelert Cho - a Los Angeles-based graphic designer, food enthusiast and fashionista - Oh Joy! covers inspirational interiors, clothes and stationery. The Closet & Casa series, where creative women share their favourite outfit and decorating scheme, is hugely popular, and the blog now attracts more than 18,000 readers every day.
Joy also has a second blog, Oh Joy Eats (to share her food-related adventures in more detail). She published a guide to becoming a freelance creative talent called Creative, Inc, and designs beautiful stationery, which is available to buy via the blog.
This Vancouver-based blog was set up in 2005 by the husband and wife design experts Earl and Jan, who use their posts to share inspiring images, promote emerging design talent and chart their own town house renovations. Here, you'll find Poppytalk Handmade - a curated, monthly marketplace that showcases handmade and vintage goods from around the world. Artists can also share their work with a readership that includes retailers, wholesalers, magazine editors, bloggers and shoppers who appreciate design.
The posts are organised in to inviting categories such as Polaroids, Street Art and The Beautiful. Letterpress lovers, beware: there's plenty here to tempt you. Poppytalk still operates on a basic platform and has a generic wooden-effect template that feels a bit dated, but the excellent content more than makes up for this.
If the Lampshade Fits
Raina Cox, an interior designer from Denver, is a blogger who doesn't mince her words. In a blogosphere dominated by OMGs, LOLs and sugary sycophants, Raina's sarcastic and, at times, acerbic commentary on the world of interiors is refreshingly honest and funny.
Her motto for the blog, "Life is too short to live ugly", sets the tone for the blog and she certainly tells it how it is. For example, one post entitled "Oh my. No" shows a magazine craft project of some rather nasty stencilled drawers with the simple caption: "Living Etc: Could U look any more lame?"
Another image shows a tasteless dining room with wilting tulips, entitled "Even the flowers are unhappy to be there." It's harsh stuff, but Raina admires as well as derides, which stops this from being just a bitter rant.
Lobster and Swan
This is the blog of the British design enthusiast Jeska, who writes about her seemingly perfect everyday life and shares her beautiful photographs. Her content is varied and creative. Some days she posts photos of her ever-evolving vintage-style home; sometimes, it's her cute kitten who stars. She posts inspiring images of her craft projects, junk shop finds and even her lunches. Her beautiful vignettes are enough to encourage even the most miserable anti-stylist to rearrange the ornaments and plump the cushions, while anti-crafters will undoubtedly feel the urge to take up crochet or stitch a length of floral bunting.
SF Girl by Bay
Victoria Smith, a former art dealer based in San Francisco, is a photographer, stylist and flea market aficionado. She launched her blog in 2006 to share her creativity and passion for bohemian modern style. The blog largely consists of product reviews and shopping tips, with behind-the-scenes interviews with designers and artists and virtual tours of homes and studios to inspire her loyal fan base of 12,000 daily readers.
Updated: June 8, 2011 04:00 AM