• Kristen Garaffo

The Top Five Books That Helped Me Design My Dream Apartment



I am not a professional interior designer.

I actually looked into maybe going back to school for design - but ultimately, after looking into more details about what a design degree actually entails, I decided not too. I'm just someone who loves Home and beautiful things, and for me, that meant learning on my own.


I have learned so much from Home accounts on social media, and by reading books about what makes a house a home. What interests me is not only how to make your Home beautiful, but how to keep your Home minimal and organized, as well as the ties between Home, and feeling at Home in our bodies and in our spirits. (it's all connected!)


These five books are some of my favorites - and I would absolutely recommend them to anyone who is interested in creating the Home they dream about!


The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, By Marie Kondo


Of course this has to be my first one, I went through the whole KonMari method a few years ago and haven't looked back since. Marie Kondo is all about keeping what sparks joy, and parting with the things that no longer serve us, with gratitude. It's not so much about minimalism and getting rid of everything you own - its more about honing in on your values, discovering what you love, and honoring the energy that each item in your Home has. I personally love that she talks to her Home and to her things, as if they were alive. This is a great book for someone just starting out on their decluttering adventure, she also has a show on Netflix that I love so much!

Spark Joy, By Marie Kondo


If you read and love Marie Kondo's first book, I highly recommend her second book as well. She answers questions that many had after reading the first book, and this book includes illustrations on how to fold clothes and how to organize each space. And the illustrations are so cute! I personally like both of these books together, but if you didn't love her first book, you could probably pass on this one.


Dwelling, Simple Ways to Nourish Your Home, Body and Soul By Melissa Michaels


Melissa Michaels of The Inspired Room has written many books, and I will admit, I haven't read any of her earlier books, but this one is so lovely. This book is all about how our Homes and our Bodies are connected, and how taking small steps towards taking care of your environment is also taking care of you. This sentiment is what inspired me to start this blog and this platform in the first place - taking care of your Home is taking care of YOU.

Beautifully Organized, A Guide to Function and Style In Your Home, By Nikki Boyd


What I love about this book is that 1. It's a gorgeous coffee table book - it looks so beautiful on a shelf or on a table, and 2. It's a great read!! Nikki Boyd of At Home With Nikki has so many amazing tips in here on how to organize your Home in a beautiful and functional way. She goes through a room a chapter, and I followed her steps when I organized my kitchen a few weeks ago. I also love that she talks about creating an experience in every space - just a little something extra that makes you and your guests feel a little more taken care of.

Cozy Minimalist Home, By Myquillyn Smith


When I first heard that Myquillyn Smith of The Nester coined a term "cozy minimalist" - I was in. Her book is all about creating a cozy home without buying more stuff to fill it. Out of all the books recommended here - this is the one that focuses the most on style and design, and I love how intentional she is with all the items in her home - and how she guides you to start exactly where you are with what you have. She has helped me embrace all of the imperfections in my Home and the biggest thing I've learned from her is to go BIG! (instead of having lots of small decor items!)


I believe that anyone can have an intentional, organized, beautiful Home, no matter the size, or budget. I hope you find these book recommendations helpful - you can shop these books by clicking on the images below! *affiliate links


xo, Kristen