Finally, a before and after chapter showcases fifty projects broken down by cost, time and difficulty. The majority of projects have been created within the constraints of time, budget and an average construction skill set, making them suitable for a wide variety of readers. The before and afters range from pieces of furniture through to room renovations and overhauls. The book ends with a resource guide, although the listings are generally US-centric.
The book was designed by the team at ALSO, who have also been involved with the Design*Sponge blog design. The layouts are clean and easy to navigate, and each chapter features a pink ‘handmade’ opener incorporating pink ribbon (you can read about process here). On a total book nerd level, I’m a little unsure about the sturdiness of the uncoated stock that has been used on the cover, especially as this is such a large hardcover book of 400 pages (my copy was already a little battered after its journey in the post), but I do like the gold foiling effect. If you’re interested in reading about the cover design process, check out Grace’s post here. It offers a good insight into the steps that can sometimes goes into getting a book cover right finalised.
I was brimming with ideas after reading this book, and can’t wait to try out a few things in my own home. I can also see myself picking it up and flicking through whenever I’m after a bit of decorating inspiration. I leant my copy to my dad (who considers himself to be a bit of a DIY enthusiast, although he doesn’t always finish the projects he starts!) to read when he was visiting the other week, and he enjoyed looking through the sneak peeks and project ideas too.
Even though Design*Sponge is a massive team effort, it’s also clear that this is a personal book, and Grace’s enthusiasm and love for design clearly shines through every page. And the biggest thing to take away from this book is one of Grace’s main objectives: that design – good design – should be accessible to all.
Design*Sponge at Home is out now in Australia through Hardie Grant Books. Grace and the Design*Sponge team will be coming to Sydney and Melbourne on their book tour in 2012. Exciting! Stay tuned to Design*Sponge for the announcement.