The New Bohemians book by Justina Blakeney

When it comes to my professional work, I guess it would fall under more modern, clean and minimal design principles. I’ve always found that ironic because I love collecting things and having multiple layers and vignettes of objects around me. If you saw my office, “sparse” would probably be the last word that comes to mind. As much as I love new modern designs, I also have such a fondness for, and am quite inspired by, antique/vintage and handmade items. Somehow all these aesthetic contradictions blend together when it comes to my home. In that respect, I guess you could say I have a kind of bohemian approach to decorating. Free from any specific rules… eclectic, and not dictated by any traditions but rather my own instincts and creative whims. That’s where Justina Blakeney comes in.

If you’re not aware, take note- this Queen of “the Jungalow” has been the champion of the “bohemian” spirit and I’ve been such a fan and follower for quite a few years. I had heard of Justina through the blogsphere, but really started to take a serious note through Pinterest. I was noticing that everything I was repinning was always from her. I was like, “Who is this person and how is it that she has such amazing taste?!”
I had to meet her in person. It turns out she is exactly as she presents herself- approachable, humble, full of positivity, effortless style, and most of all, a genuine and honest passion for life, design, expressing yourself, and helping to inspire others fuel their creativity. All of this is captured in her new book, The New Bohemians: Cool & Collected Homes.

As a die hard book and magazine lover, a lot of new titles come my way. Honestly, this is one of the best, cohesive, and well thought out books that I’ve read in awhile. The book features 20 different homes and they are grouped into 6 different types of “bohemian” that include “modern”, “folksy”, “romantic”, “earthy”, “nomadic”, and “maximal”.

Each home featured is presented as a full tour, so you really get to experience how each homeowner has curated their spaces in context of the rest of the house. Justina gives fun commentary and highlights certain features in each photo, pointing out the features that really make the space unique.

Let’s take a look at just a few examples shall we?

The New Bohemians book by Justina Blakeney via happymudane.com

This is the living room of Katherin and Brian Smirke. Let me just preface this by saying, they live in a geodesic dome…in the desert (Joshua Tree) Hello?! How awesome is that? It falls under the “modern” chapter, which is the category I probably gravitate towards most. The yellow pop of that lamp and throw blanket are kind of everything, but I also love how it’s mellowed out with the leather and neutral touches.

The New Bohemians book by Justina Blakeney via happymudane.com

It makes perfect sense that Justina’s eye for design would run in the family, as her sister Faith’s LA home is also included. Here is her totally enviable outdoor patio. Note how the outdoor rugs she’s used almost look like tile and totally make what could be something ordinary totally extraordinary! Also the potted plants give so much charm.

The New Bohemians book by Justina Blakeney via happymudane.com

I’ve been a fan of Adam Pogue’s space ever since he entered his living room in an Apartment Therapy contest. In the book we get to see the full house tour and it doesn’t disappoint. Here is his living room. How cool is that wall graphic and how he has mounted all those planters to the wall?!

At the end of each house tour, Justina has an “Adopt an Idea” page where she offers tips and hints on how to get certain looks from each home.

The New Bohemians book by Justina Blakeney via happymudane.com

Mixed in throughought the book are also recipes and fun DIY projects.

The New Bohemians book by Justina Blakeney via happymudane.com

Another treat that Justina includes in this book is a full on “Plant-o-pedia” that describes and identifies a whole jungle of plants that are good for the home and how to best care for them. Such valuable information!!

The New Bohemians book by Justina Blakeney via happymudane.com

Finally, even if you don’t read a word of Justina’s amazing content and words (for shame!!!, lol), every image in the book was photographed by the über talented Dabito. (I was lucky enough to have Dab shoot my Project SB home awhile back- click here for the full tour)

The New Bohemians book by Justina Blakeney via happymudane.com

His ability to capture the mood and spirit within a space is unprecedented and every image alone is pretty magical.

Justina’s book is such great inspiration that you don’t have to follow any set rules when it comes to decorating. The people’s homes that she features is a reminder that no matter what your lifestyle, letting your creativity guide you is the best way to live.

Ok, I’ll shut up now so you can just go get this book already!

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