1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Unusually good on the design process and personal imput,
This review is from: Decorate Workshop: A Creative 8 Step Process for Transforming Your Home (Hardcover)
I was looking for a book which would encourage me to think outside the box and this was it. Although I have art school traning, its still not always easy to realise where your ideas come from or why. I have some wonderfully bright and cheerful (but highly traditional) watercolours in gold frames which I was beginning to feel didn't go with my own creative work or other modern decorative items. Advising a student or friend with this dilemma might be easy, but try it for yourself and its sometimes hard to see the wood from the trees. Holly provided that outside, impartial voice I was looking for; it felt like I was discussing my problems with a fellow art graduate, more than reading an over stylised, pretty pictures book, of which there are plenty already out there. I disagree with some readers who talk about pop psychology in the book; rather the way she breaks things down early on, to get you to really look inside yourself, at your own tastes and who you are - that is vital for any type of authenticity. Its also the way we're taught to approach any design subject in art school - again to make work highly relevant to us, or the client, and I was glad of these timely reminders. The exercises involved in writing answers to questions - what you loved as a child, etc, and making the storyboards, were vital as a component. Without this thought and inward reflection, results can be very bland and predictable - the stock coastal style, neutral with texture, the crystal, dark wood and trad paintings, etc. I am less worried now that I have a hodge-podge collection of odd things, but rather a creative collection of interesting pieces and am slowly working out how to put them together in a new home. My only slight criticism if any, is that the look is a bit young all round. I guess this is not surprising as the author and her contemporaries are youngish, but I am not, and think I need to make the style slightly more grown up (but not sensible or heaven bid, suberban M and S looking!). This is a great starting point and I feel, quite an unusual decor book, in that it has a solid underpinning. I would recommend anyone looking for their own style, needing a home facelift or starting again to buy this book, you couldn't do better.