One of my favorite gifts to give (and receive!) are coffee table books. Big and beautiful, these picture books are a constant source of inspiration and double as home decor. Whether you love fashion, travel, interior design, photography, or even fly fishing there’s a coffee table book perfect for your passion. Coffee table books are are also wonderful gifts because many can be found for under $50, and there’s no social pressure for the recipient to read it. I love Christmas afternoons spent laying on the living room floor, leafing through a new book’s beautiful pages after a festive brunch with family. Plus, with Amazon Prime, they’ll arrive just in time for the holiday!
Here is a list of my 10 all-time favorite coffee table books for your reading pleasure.
1. Ralph Lauren. A monumental book both in physical size and scope of Ralph Lauren’s work, RL contains many personal images from the Lauren family’s personal collection alongside favorites from the runway.
2. American Beauty. A tribute including over 100 portraits of the women who symbolize our country today, from Jenna Lyons to Solange Knowles.
3. Domino: The Book of Decorating. For our first Christmas as a married couple, David scoured eBay, Amazon and Etsy to complete my collection of Domino Magazines, wrapping each individually so I could savor the process of unwrapping and reading them. Well, for a fraction of the effort you can enjoy the best of Domino in this attractive coffee table book. I’ve owned this book for years and still find new ideas each time I read it. This book is the perfect gift for the friend or family member that’s moving into a new apartment or home.
4. The Big Book of Chic. Designer Miles Redd’s high-octane and undeniably chic interiors are a constant source of inspiration. Bold color and unexpected combinations are signature elements of his distinctive style.
5. CZ Guest: American Style Icon. A study of American tastemaker C.Z. Guest’s 50+ years of continuing influence in the spheres of society, fashion, and interiors.
6. Vogue Living : Houses, Gardens, People. Gathering images from 36 spectacular homes from around the world, editor Hamish Bowles gives us an insiders look at the owners and how they live.
7. Beautiful. Just out this year, this book is a classic take on California’s indoor/outdoor lifestyle by interior designer and blogger, Mark D. Sikes.
8. Once Upon A Time. Renowned photographer Slim Aarons lends his singular eye – or should I say lens – to focus on the international jetset at work, play and socializing for three decades from the 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s. (I also love Poolside with Slim Aarons for lots of glamourous pools!)
9. The Southerner’s Handbook. I received a subscription to Garden and Gun from my friend Jordan last year and I’ve been transfixed by everything quintesentially Southern since. This book is worth buying for the cover art alone, but if you wonder what the secret to making perfect biscuits is, how to whip up a proper Sazerac, or need tips for betting on the Kentucky Derby let The Southerner’s Handbook be your guide.
10. The Grand Budapest Hotel. Wes Anderson fans rejoice! This beautiful book is full of behind-the-scenes interviews, and sources that inspired the movie’s screenplay and arresting imagery. Plus, it’s pink!
I could go on as there are so many other coffee table books I love, but I decided to limit this list to my top 10. What are your favorite coffee table books? I’d love to hear about them in the comments below!
All photos by Stacie and David Flinner for stacieflinner.com