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On My Bookshelf: Paris Sketchbook

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I thought I'd round out my week of Paris posts with this amazing collection of illustrations by Jason Brooks, "Paris Sketchbook" ($25, Laurence King). Brooks is originally a fashion illustrator, who while on an assignment for a couture show fell in love with the city and began drawing and painting iconic symbols of Parisian culture. Here are just a few of the sketches I loved.

 Paris Sketchbook Cover

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This illustration shows the variety and architectural details of doorways in Paris.

1 This illustration shows the variety and architectural details of doorways in Paris.

The street lamps of Paris reflect the character of the city: varied, refined and always elegant.

2 The street lamps of Paris reflect the character of the city: varied, refined and always elegant.

This moody illustration depicts a rainy, wet day in Paris.

3 This moody illustration depicts a rainy, wet day in Paris.

A fashionably drawn women walks her poodle in front of a patisserie.

4 A fashionably drawn women walks her poodle in front of a patisserie.

Here, an assortment of everyone's favorite Parisian pastries.

5 Here, an assortment of everyone's favorite Parisian pastries.

Paris: where women the world over take inspiration from for effortless, classic style.

6 Paris: where women the world over take inspiration from for effortless, classic style.

The Palais Royal gardens at dusk.

7 The Palais Royal gardens at dusk.

Illustrations by Jason Brooks, courtesy of Laurence King.

On My Bookshelf: William Hodgins Interiors

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Boston-based William Hodgins is one of the most distinguished and experienced interior designers out there, and it's really neat to see the way his style has evolved in the last three decades that he has been in the industry. His homes and rooms have a distinct quality of quiet elegance -- they have a way of suggesting luxuriousness and opulence without screaming it out, which is what makes them so subtle and beautiful in the end. Here are a few favorite examples of his work that really stuck out to me after looking through"William Hodgins Interiors" ($75, Norton) by Stephen M. Salny.

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This built-in bookcase is the star of the room, featuring antique bronzes and a nineteenth-century dog portrait.

1 This built-in bookcase is the star of the room, featuring antique bronzes and a nineteenth-century dog portrait.

Aquamarine walls complement a Louis XVI-style dining set and an incredible cut-glass chandelier.

2 Aquamarine walls complement a Louis XVI-style dining set and an incredible cut-glass chandelier.

The exotic silk velvet upholstery on this empire armchair is a total scene-stealer.

3 The exotic silk velvet upholstery on this empire armchair is a total scene-stealer.

I can't decide what I like best about this Boston Back Bay dining room - the glamorous design details or the amazing view from the huge window.

4 I can't decide what I like best about this Boston Back Bay dining room - the glamorous design details or the amazing view from the huge window.

The large red ginger jar displayed underneath this desk is one of the unique accessories Hodgins picked up during his travels.

5 The large red ginger jar displayed underneath this desk is one of the unique accessories Hodgins picked up during his travels.

All of the accessories in this living room are stunning, from the gilded-bronze wall lights to the Christopher Spitzmiller lamps.

6 All of the accessories in this living room are stunning, from the gilded-bronze wall lights to the Christopher Spitzmiller lamps.

Photographs by Oberto Gili and Michael J. Lee, courtesy of Norton.

On My Bookshelf: The Meaning of Home

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JeffreyAlanMarks_cover

A Southern Californian at heart, Jeffrey Alan Marks (of Bravo TV's Million Dollar Decorators) combines breezy effortlessness with tailored sophistication in the homes he decorates. His rooms are a curated collection of items that reflect different styles and periods - an aesthetic he takes pride in -- "I love trying to create a cohesive look out of improbable unions," he says. That signature can be seen on all the pages of his book, "The Meaning of Home" ($45, Rizzoli), from the living room styled with vintage Japanese pillows and a contemporary rug to the dining room with a modern James Nares statement piece hanging over heirloom chairs.

I hope you enjoyed exploring these new titles with me all week -- it's been great poring over so many beautiful photos and reading about the different perspectives and approaches of talented designers. I know I'm feeling inspired, are you?

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Marks designed this entryway around a stunning abstract painting.

1 Marks designed this entryway around a stunning abstract painting.

This monochromatic kitchen is brought to life by the dramatic light fixture, made with a collection of found objects.

2 This monochromatic kitchen is brought to life by the dramatic light fixture, made with a collection of found objects.

Grass cloth walls warm up a Nantucket-inspired bedroom. The acrylic table is even outfitted with rope handles to add nautical flair to an otherwise modern piece.

3 Grass cloth walls warm up a Nantucket-inspired bedroom. The acrylic table is even outfitted with rope handles to add nautical flair to an otherwise modern piece.

The gorgeous color scheme in this dining room, including the navy and white lacquered walls, takes it's cue from the artwork by James Nares.

4 The gorgeous color scheme in this dining room, including the navy and white lacquered walls, takes it's cue from the artwork by James Nares.

This room features pillows made from salvaged vintage Japanese fabrics and a John Dickinson plaster coffee table.

5 This room features pillows made from salvaged vintage Japanese fabrics and a John Dickinson plaster coffee table.

As an unexpected touch, Marks flipped the rug in this room upside down and displayed it that way instead, because the colors were richer on the reverse side.

6 As an unexpected touch, Marks flipped the rug in this room upside down and displayed it that way instead, because the colors were richer on the reverse side.

Photographs by Douglas Friedman, courtesy of Rizzoli.