Pick up Nate Berkus's just-released book, "The Things That Matter," and you will feel like you are having coffee with the designer -- his tone is so intimate and casual. Between the covers, you learn about what has truly inspired him and how much he has overcome, accompanied by photos of his own home and the mementos he keeps there.
For Nate, design is something that should matter: Your home should be made up of pieces of your life and your personal expression. Each feature -- including a sleek Chicago apartment, a Greenwich village townhouse, and a rustic ranch in Texas -- comes with personal stories about his clients and how he infused their lives and personalities into the designs.
Nate isn't saying there are no rules in decorating (he firmly believes in designing to the scale and space of a room), but his larger emphasis on personal belongings and accessories is endlessly inspiring, and provides a warm through-line to each perfectly finished and decorated space.