I don't own a coffee table, but I still like coffee table books. They're perfect for flicking through when you're feeling too lazy to read something more substantial, and they're great for providing sudden bursts of inspiration. Here are my five favourite:
1. The Book of Islands by Philip Dodd and Ben Donald
I've said elsewhere on this blog that I'm really drawn to islands and here is a whole book of them! This book explores every possible kind of island, from the widly remote Socotra to the hugely popular Ibitha. Each page is dedicated to a different island with an accompanying photograph and interesting details about what life on the islands are like. A must read for all islomaniacs.
2. Fruits by Shoichi Aoki
This is possibly the most colourful book you'll ever see. In this collection of photographs, Aoki reveals just how eccentric and vibrant the inhabitants of Harajuku in Japan used to be during the the early 00s.After looking through this, everything in your wardrobe will seem tame in comparison.
3. Style by Lauren Conrad
I love Lauren Conrad's minimalistic style, and I love how practical her style advice actually is. Not only does she give great advice about how to put outfits together, she also discusses how to care for your clothes, and how to make the most of them. It is a definitive guide for women [although for technical knowledge you could supplement it with Fashion for Dummies] and is one of my most useful coffee table books, in that it actually provides useful advice.
4. Books Do Furnish A Room by Leslie Geddes Brown
I believe that books make a house a home and Geddes Brown very much agrees with me. This book is lovingly filled with ideas about how best to display your favourite tomes and is certain to make you want to rush out to your nearest bookshop just so you can buy more stacks to fill the empty spaces around your house. I also like this book because the author advocates that books should be touched and not kept behind gass.
5. Toyko A Certain Style by Kyoichi Tsuzuki
If you are nosy like me, then you'll like looking inside other people's houses. This book does just that - it looks inside the homes of the residents of Toyko and showcases how they arrange their belongings in often cramped spaces. For me, it's always interesting to see how people live and this book could almost be used an anthropological resource, as there is such a variation in the way people live even in just one city. This book is fascinating, and I would love to have a similiar book dedicated to people's houses in London, as I am always curious about my own city.