tzd book club: habitat

Y’all, I’ve just finished the most delightful afternoon curled up on my sofa.  You know I love to read design books — hence our lil book club — and I have a real treat in store for you today!

HABITAT COVERLauren Liess’ first book, Habitat: The Field Guide to Decorating, was released about a month ago, and it is breathtaking.  I preordered my copy back in July, and I’ve been waiting impatiently for it ever since.  Of course, I flipped through Habitat as soon as I had a copy in my hot little hands, but it wasn’t until today that I was able to linger — truly linger — over Lauren’s words.  In Habitat, Lauren shares her take on the entire design process, from the fundamentals to the intangibles.

Lauren Liess DC Design House Hideaway Photography by Helen NormanIf you’ve followed Lauren’s career — and I’m guessing you have — you already know that her design work is gorgeous.  There’s so much beauty (and practical advice) in these pages!  Her aesthetic is natural, relaxed, organic and timeless.  I’m not a nature lover (can I blame it on my crazy allergies and neat-freak tendencies?!), but I love the seamless way in which she brings the outside in.  Her interiors resonate with my soul, and I know they will resonate with yours, too.  I think I’ve put my finger on why: her interiors are authentic, and she is, too.

Home Backdrop for Life Lauren LiessTruly, what I enjoyed most about Habitat is that it conveys who Lauren is as a person.  I’ve known Lauren for about five years (gosh, time flies!) and she is the most genuine, kindest, beautiful person inside and out.  Doesn’t this quote capture the best and most important thing about decorating?  It is a joy and a privilege to create homes that are the perfect backdrops for our clients to enjoy their lives and their families.  Thank you, Lauren!

Lauren Liess Fox Vale Living Room Photography by Helen NormanIf you’d like to win a copy of Lauren’s book, courtesy of TZD, simply comment below or “like” or comment on my Instagram post (@tracizeller).  I can’t wait for you to experience Habitat yourself!

Traci Zeller Textiles in HabitatPS: While reading through Lauren’s list of favorite sources, I was completely surprised to discover that she had included Traci Zeller Textiles.  I had no clue that she’d included me — she hadn’t mentioned it — and I couldn’t be more grateful.  xoxoxo.

Interiors by Lauren Liess Interiors; photography by Helen Norman.  Book cover by Abrams.   

tzd book club: positively chic interiors

Y’all, it’s way past time for another installment of the tzd book club.  I’ve exercised my “Buy with 1-Click” reflexes (read: my most impressive muscle tone) and enjoyed some quality uninterrupted time (read: cross-country nonstop flight sans twins) — which means I have so much to talk about.  Does it count as blogging if I mentally write the post but never physically publish it?  Oops.  Promise I’ll get better about that.

Positively Chic Interiors Carrier and CompanyNext up?  Positively Chic Interiors, the first book from the husband-and-wife duo Jesse Carrier and Mara Miller, otherwise known as Carrier and Company.   Jesse and Mara create chic and timeless interiors that are a deeply personal reflection of its occupants.   Their clients include fashion luminaries like Anna Wintour, Jason Wu and Annie Leibovitz, and they have been named to both Architectural Digest’s AD100 list (twice!) and Elle Decor’s A-List.  Amazing, right?

As you would expect, every image in the book is flat-out gorgeous.  I especially love that you cannot sum up “the Carrier and Company look” in a few short words.  Elegantly traditional?  Check.  Luxuriously minimalist?  Check. Glamorously bohemian?  Check.  Yet again.

Timelessness Is the Love Child of Modern and Traditional Carrier and CompanyPerhaps the best part of Positively Chic Interiors, however, is that Jesse and Mara’s words are as inspiring as their designs.  I’ve always puzzled over the variety of descriptions I hear and read about my own aesthetic.  Some people consider my interiors super traditional.  Yet I’ve also been described as modern.  Neither of those resonated perfectly with me, however, and now I know why.  In the words of Jessie and Mara, “we think that when it comes to design and decorating, timelessness is the love child of modern and traditional.  Like our modern interiors, our timeless rooms embrace and celebrate visual crispness and clarity.  Yet they meld that cleanness and precision with the hues, the familiar forms, and the rich textures that speak of tradition.  And by definition, they eschew the trendy.”  Amen.

Oh, and the binding is off-white with red metallic ink, and the red endsheets look as though they’ve been lacquered.  Yep, positively chic.

Yippee!  Thanks to the generosity of The Vendome Press, I received a copy to review and I have a copy to send to a lucky reader.  Simply “like” my Instagram post (@tracizeller) or comment below, and you’ll be entered to win!

Book cover photo by Brantley Photography via    

traci zeller