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Holly talks to us about her new Bestseller: Decorate

Friday, 6 May 2011 by Irene Hoofs

HollyBecker

I already told you about Holly's wonderful new book, but only until recently did I have the change to scroll to the actual book myself. And wow how many pages of inspiration... each room in a home gets plenty of attention. Many useful tips and ideas are given together with illustrated floor-plans. Not just one style but a variety of different styles, contemporary, modern, floral, colorful and white you name it...  and I like that very much. With all these different styles the book will definetly appeal to a very wide audience and it's no wonder to me that Decorate was ranked #2 in the Wall Street Journal... an absolute bestseller so to speak! And I'm honored and thankful to Holly for have a tiny little spot in her book :) like many other guests Holly has quoted bloggers, interior designers and other professionals throughout the book. 

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Decorate: 1,000 Design Ideas for Every Room in Your Home by Holly Becker

I have asked Holly a couple of questions and despite her busy schedule she was more than happy to answer them for us! 

* How did you come up with the idea for the book Decorate?

UK Interiors author, Joanna Copestick, was following decor8 and thought that it would be nice to do a book together that merges the voice of an American (me) with someone from another part of the world, like her, who lives and works in London. She also thought I had a good eye and thought that working with me would be interesting as I could work on the visuals - book homes that I like, hire the photographer that I wanted to work with,travel to the homes to direct the shoots and style, and then write a portion of the book. I also was assigned the task to produce the entire directory on my own which took me months. I relied on decor8 archives for lots of those resources. ..........READ MORE >>>

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I also wanted to add a blogging section, I originally had over 50 blogs but the editor advised that I trim the list for the sake of space. All of the blogs that are listed I selected on my own and was not pressured by anyone to put them in my book -- in fact, same goes for all of the contributors and homes in the book -- no one made me select any of them, which felt great because I included people that I really wanted to include so the book feels very special to me personally as a result. My publisher gave me lots of green lights on this project to do what I wanted, what felt right, and she let me guide the project which was so rewarding. I even had say over the cover images which was satisfying as well. The book is written in a more approachable, "bloggy" style as well so that we are not talking down to readers but including them in our discussion just like on a blog. Also, the quotes throughout the book are a result of extensive interviews with all contributors, then extracting quotes that fit editorially -- but again, it's a bit of a "blog style" to have so many quotes around images because to me, it almost feels like the comments on a blog post -- a community vibe which I am all about. I am proud that 95% of the photos were shot for Decorate by my favorite interiors photographer, Debi Treloar. I didn't want to use photos that had already been seen on the web before, I wanted the book to be worth the money but also fresh and inspiring. I am also proud that it teaches and inspires but doesn't set rules or boss anyone around. It is a genuine expression of my passion for including others, beautiful and personal spaces, real living and advice that inspires and works.

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* Why did you choose using quotes throughout the book?

I selected, then interviewed, over 75 contributors that we could then quote throughout the book so the quotes are for Decorate and not just pulled from random sources. I wanted to bring in voices from all over the world, bloggers I follow, designers I love, stylists who inspire me, etc. to make the book more enjoyable to read, very inspirational, and of course to make it feel much like a blog with written text and then "comments" or quotes that mix in well with the ideas presented. I do not believe that one decorating way is THE way, I believe everyone has a right to hone in and then create their own style at home in a personal way. By having voices from many out there we are showing readers that there is no single expert - we all have great ideas and the key is to think of some of your own, borrow from others, be inspired, and just have fun!* which house inside the book would you like to live in?That's hard to answer because each home has certain characteristics that I found charming -- there was a little slice of me in all of the spaces which is why it took me months to curate a collection of homes with amazing decorating ideas -- but that all felt like something I could live in and enjoy without each being 100% my style -- again, the idea was to showcase ideas and that is what each home had - tons of ideas that I can imagine using in my own space. 

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* What was the best part of creating this book?

Working with Debi Treloar for 4 months on location throughout Europe and the United States. I adore Debi and we've become friends, I hope to work with her again someday. I also adore Joanna Copestick - she made the process of authoring a book very easy for a debut author like me. I'm proud that we stayed on deadline and released the book on schedule and that it came out with a cohesive look and feel -- and voice -- because I wondered if it would be difficult to write a book with another person. Not at all, thanks to lovely Debi and Joanna. I learned so much and feel forever grateful to these two women for their encouragement, support and guidance. And now, the best part of creating Decorate is to go to signings and meet decor8 and Decorate readers! I love meeting the many people who read my blog and who are enjoying the book. It's my gift to my readers and I'm so happy that they are supporting the book, reviewing it on their blogs (like you dear Irene) and even coming out to meet me whenever I do events. Oh and I must add that the VERY best part of creating this book is fulfilling a childhood dream. That is powerful stuff.

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* 'How' you hope, people will use this book?

I hope that if they are online reading blogs, that they will use this book as a way to remember this era of blogging and design blogs so that in thirty years they can crack is open and their memories of this time will come rushing in. That's what books do, right? They connect us to certain moments in our life. But for now, I hope people will simply enjoy the many ideas, soak in the gorgeous images, use it to inspire their own decorating ideas, and of course put it proudly on their coffee table where it is meant to be enjoyed for years to come.

Thank you Holly!
Decorate by Holly Becker and Joanna Copestick, photography by Debi Treloar. Order here and fan/facebook page here. 

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The left part of the image below shows you one of the lovely decorating tips... i'm a quick student as you cn see on the right-side of the image... my own home, not in the book :)

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