Tools & Workshop

Books for the Love of Home

Experts on all things home aren't always confined to hammer and nail. Many have picked up another set of tools altogether-pencil and paper. Looking to spread knowledge beyond their own toolboxes, today's voices of interior design, craft inspiration, and historic homes have made 2012 a banner year for the home improvement book. Just in time for the holidays, we've gathered a fresh new trio of favorite stocking stuffers:

The Things That Matter

In designer Nate Berkus's recently released The Things That Matter, we are reminded of how one's personal experiences shape who they are and how they live. Berkus fills the book with intimate stories of his childhood, introduces us to people who influenced him and encouraged him along the way, and opens up about the remarkable experiences that have changed him forever. Readers get a personal glimpse into Berkus's home as well as 12 others, from a sleek metal-and-glass high-rise in Chicago to a rustic cottage in the Hudson Valley. Each property proves a revealing portrait of its owners lives and of the inspiring choices that shaped them. More…

Young House Love

In 2006, armed with a can-do attitude and zero formal training, husband-and-wife duo John and Sherry Petersik embarked on an ambitious home improvement journey. Six years, two whole-house renovations, and one enormously successful blog later, the Petersiks decided to move their crafty ideas from the computer screen to the glossy pages of a beautiful book. Young House Love: 243 Ways to Paint, Craft, Update & Show Your Home Some Love is a fun and upbeat source of inspiration. With instructive images accompanying each easy-to-read project guide, renters and homeowners alike will find themselves seeing new possibilities for every forgotten corner at home. More…

Houses of the Presidents

Anyone who has gone through a major remodel knows that estimates are likely to run a tad long. If it brings any comfort, even Presidents have had to endure the same misery: It took Thomas Jefferson 54 years to complete his beloved Monticello! In Houses of the Presidents: Childhood Homes, Family Dwellings, Private Escapes, and Grand Estates, you'll find a wealth of additional information on the homes (birthplaces, residences, retreats) of the American Presidents-from George Washington's Mount Vernon to Punachou Circle Apartments in Honolulu, where Barack Obama lived with his grandmother. Author Hugh Howard, co-author of several books, weaves an intimate portrait that combines architectural history with intimate family stories and political lore to shed light on the men who have occupied the nation's highest office. Color photographs by Roger Straus III bring these homes and furnishings vividly to life. More…

For more holiday gift ideas, consider:

2012 Gift Guide: For the DIY Mom
2012 Gift Guide: For the DIY Dad
2012 Gift Guide: For the Gardener