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On My Bookshelf: An Invitation to Chateau du Grand-Lucé

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Just released this week, "An Invitation to Chateau du Grand-Lucé: Decorating a Great French Country House" ($65, Rizzoli) is a unique look at a stunning home in the countryside of France. It tells the story of award-winning interior designer Timothy Corrigan's multi-year journey of buying and transforming this historic estate.

After a battle to win over Les Architects des Batiments de France, the French equivalent of the Landmarks Commission, Corrigan became the new owner of the chateau and started the process of reviving it to its former glory –– with a fresh infusion of Corrigan's welcoming aesthetic.

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This sun-filled Grand Salon has a stunning view of the formal gardens.

1 This sun-filled Grand Salon has a stunning view of the formal gardens.

A curated collection of art objects adds depth to Corrigan's design.

2 A curated collection of art objects adds depth to Corrigan's design.

The blue paint on the walls in the Chambre de Luce, the largest guest room, is tempered by gray to keep it from being to

3 The blue paint on the walls in the Chambre de Luce, the largest guest room, is tempered by gray to keep it from being to "sweet."

The Salon Chinois, with its wintery setup, looks cozy and inviting.

4 The Salon Chinois, with its wintery setup, looks cozy and inviting.

The Master Suite is grand in scale.

5 The Master Suite is grand in scale.

Corrigan used small details and accessories to make the grand bedroom feel more intimate.

6 Corrigan used small details and accessories to make the grand bedroom feel more intimate.

Photographs by Eric Piasecki, courtesy of Rizzoli.

On My Bookshelf: The English Country House

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There's something mysterious about a stately home in the English countryside. With rolling green fields and charming interiors, its easy to imagined storied histories for English manors. In "The English Country House" by James Peill ($55, Vendome), Peill takes a closer look at 10 such homes, all still in the hands of descendants of their original owners.

As if the beautiful photographs of the interiors and vistas weren't enough, Peill's text also looks at the histories and legacies of the families who occupied these estates. With shows like Downton Abbey becoming increasingly popular, Anglophilia is suddenly cool. This book smartly takes advantage of that with a foreword by the show's creator Julian Fellowes.

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A beautiful detail shot from the interior of Milton in Cambridgeshire.

1 A beautiful detail shot from the interior of Milton in Cambridgeshire.

A print-filled bathroom in Milton.

2 A print-filled bathroom in Milton.

A terra-cotta bust of the young Earl of Coventry at Badminton.

3 A terra-cotta bust of the young Earl of Coventry at Badminton.

A beautifully carved detail on the chimneypiece.

4 A beautifully carved detail on the chimneypiece.

Detail of the Great Drawing Room at Badminton.

5 Detail of the Great Drawing Room at Badminton.

The family's porticullis crest in the Garter strap on the ceiling in Badminton.

6 The family's porticullis crest in the Garter strap on the ceiling in Badminton.

The Great Staircase at Badminton, remodeled in the early nineteenth century.

7 The Great Staircase at Badminton, remodeled in the early nineteenth century.

The Large Library in Goodwood House in Sussex.

8 The Large Library in Goodwood House in Sussex.

Images courtesy of Vendome Press.

Check out my blog on "The Scottish Country House."

On My Bookshelf: Renzo Mongiardino

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My second book this week is a lush exploration of the opulent style of Renzo Mongiardino. In "Renzo Mongiardino: Renaissance Master of Style" ($95, Assouline), Laure Verchere explores the renowned architect and interior designer's influences and exacting craftsmanship.

The late Mongiardino was raised in a Baroque palazzo in Genoa and his sumptuous style was right in line with the lavish rooms created for theater and film, making him an in-demand theatrical designer for directors such as Franco Zeffirelli and Peter Hall.

Explore some of the luxurious spaces for yourself below:

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The beamed ceiling in this gorgeous home illustrates just how skilled Mongiardino was in the art of trope loeil.

1 The beamed ceiling in this gorgeous home illustrates just how skilled Mongiardino was in the art of trope loeil.

This room in the Carlyle Hotel in New York was inspired by The Fruit Room in Topkapi Palace.

2 This room in the Carlyle Hotel in New York was inspired by The Fruit Room in Topkapi Palace.