In a rare place where eclectic is the norm, where the title "interior designer" is alien, and flea markets and thrift stores replace big box and e-commerce retailers, To Each His Home ($45) by Bilyana Dimitrova would be the go-to design book. But, in a climate where design trends rule many of us, where finding one-of-a-kind, well-loved artifacts takes more effort than swooping up the hottest decorative accessory, Dimitrova's book isn't a design guide but simply a refreshing reminder that
our houses speak for ourselves, for better or worse. To see the rest of my review,
For the eight free-spirited, creative types spotlighted in this book, their homes speak louder than others. From the colorful photographs of an accomplished architectural photographer and the multi-topic, meandering interviews with each homeowner (or renter), come clear portraits not only of idiosyncratic spaces, each more distinct than the next, but of people who couldn't exist anywhere but the homes they've created. You might find that the waterfront cottage and totem pole of a Native American or the creative city escape of a musician and a marionette maker don't inspire you, but that's the point. In your own habitat, you can coin your own how-to book. This book won't offer you any design tips, but it'll call on you to let your freak flag (or totem pole) fly.