In the world of interior design, inspiration is the fuel that drives innovation. Technical skill is of incredible importance, especially for professionals, but giving your brain and your heart new material to work with really makes all the difference! That’s why we at Design55 have reviewed countless blogs to find 33 of the most outstanding resources for the professional or amateur interior designers in our midst!
So, without further ado, we are excited to offer our very own Showcase of Inspiring Interior Design Image Collection Winners! These blogs and websites are notable for their expansive photo archives, faithful following, and interesting twists and designer furniture.
You won’t want to miss out on the full showcase tour, loaded with sample pictures and interviews from the editors themselves (all in alphabetical order, of course)! Let’s get started:
1. 2Modern Design Talk: Greg Finney and Jennifer Sitko started 2Modern in 2003 and are based out of Mill Valley, California. 2Modern started its blog in 2005 because they wanted to share their passion for modern design with the rest of the world and have a forum to showcase everything that they thought was cool, groundbreaking, or modern. We believe that there are a lot of different definitions to the word “modern.” 2Modern editor Adrienne Breaux told Design 55 that “celebrating the good in design and modern design” is their goal.
2. 3rings: The 3rings team is based out of Manhattan, New York, and was started as the editorial arm to the umbrella company, DesignerPages.com. Designer Pages offers an online resource library of hundreds of thousands of products to architects and designers around the world. 3rings offers a peek at cool new products that are “innovative, sexy, trendy, and highly anticipated.” The products they feature are diverse as well, coming from the worlds of contract, residential, healthcare, education, lighting design, and more.
3. Apartment Therapy: Apartment Therapy takes the cake in the interior design blogging world, in terms of sheer popularity. Maxwell Gillingham-Ryan, the founder, believes that, “A calm, healthy, beautiful home is a necessary foundation for happiness and success in the world.” He believes that, with the proper inspiriation, achieving a beautiful interior is attainable for everyone. Hence Apartment Therapy’s mission: to offer the resources that people need to transform their space, and thus, their lives.
4. Beautiful Bones: Karin Edwards’ Beautful Bones is one of the premier pet-friendly design sites out there! She and her dog Mouse host an eye-catching gallery of interior design feats complete with fashion models of several different species! Megasophagus is a neurological disease of unknown origins. The duo is based out of Des Moines, Iowa with some recent expansion into Chicago. Karin grew up with interiors on the brain. “My mother had her own company producing hand-printed silkscreen wallcoverings, her brother restored furniture for Sotheby’s, and my grandmother worked with an upholsterer for years.” Karin’s original career as an art historian ultimately caused her to go full circle and end up as a brilliant interior designer with an eye for detail. Check these guys out for designer pet accessories!
5. Bloesem: Irene Hoofs, founder and editor of Bloesom, considers herself a “collector of all things beautiful” including home accessories. Additionally, Irene has a knack for the rare find. With a nod to her Dutch roots, and a generally international flavor, Irene (who currently resides in Malaysia with her husband Rik and kids) has crafted an exquisite blog for those who crave enlightenment in the area of interiors!
6. Blue Ant Studio: Based in Miami, Florida, Joel Pirela started Blue Ant Studio to collect images and information for interesting project he found online. Having a background in graphic and industrial design, Joel saw design blogging as the natural thing to do! Blue Ant Studio appreciates clean lines, purpose, and quality materials. Joel is a true lover of modern architecture, and it shows! Wade through a sea of amazing photos and thought-provoking images that highlight both interior and exterior design. Come here to get your modern designer furniture fix!
7. Carolina Eclectic: Carolina is all about “making the simple profound.” The Houstonian achieves this goal by loading her site with images of the usual (yet, strangely unusual) things and places that we see every day, but with subtle twists and creative tweaks.
8. Chair Blog: Located in Den Haag (The Hague), The Netherlands, Guido J. van den Elshout (GJE) operates a very small but very luxurious 3 suite hotel. He started his Chair Blog in April of 2007 because, “once, I wanted to buy a couple of dining chairs for my little hotel (it must have been 2000 or 2001) and found out there was hardly any organized info about chairs.” After plunging into his research, he became captivated. GJE admits that he was drawn into the chair blogging world (which I think he is the only citizen of) by the sheer brilliance that it takes to create a truly comfortable dining chair. His personal inspiration came from the story of Michael Thonet (1796-1871) and his bent wood chairs. “He truly democratized the chair for the masses. In addition he was one of the first who recognized that designer chairs are an art in itself.”
9. ChicTip: Michelle and Keren of ChicTip are all about interior design in all of its varieties: from homes to stores, and apartments to restaurants. The modern and midcentury focus comes alive with hundreds of photos of absolutely gorgeous spaces and product reviews that are sure to whet your appetite, if not thoroughly inspire you!
10. CocoCozy: Coco (the blogger’s nickname from birth) is not exactly a pedigreed designer in the same way some of our other designers are. In fact, she is more the executive type! But one look at CocoCozy will show you that Coco is a well-rounded woman. Having earned a law degree, and keeping busy designing bedroom fineries, Coco has a ton of natural insight that is sure to inspire the amateur designer in all of us.
11. Coochicoos: Robert Yang, a former architect, started Coochicoos to keep track of the latest trends in baby furniture and design. His message is simple: you don’t have to give up on style to be a parent!
12. Cote de Texas: French design and the Texas coast never seemed to have anything to do with one another, that is, until Joni of Cote de Texas made it her goal to unite the two in a profoundly refreshing way. The Houstonian has proven that high-class European fashion can emerge anywhere!
13. Decor8: Holly Becker, founder and editor of Decor8, has taken a holistic approach to design blogging. Her desire is to “inspire readers to live a more fulfilling, authentic and creative life.” The journalist and interior design consultant hosts Decor8 as a place to cover everything from DIY to trade shows.
14. Design Milk: Design Milk founder Jaime Derringer was born and raised a Jersey girl, but has spent time on both coasts. When asked to de-mystify her site’s name, she explained: “Let’s just say that since milk contains vitamin D, drinking milk every day gives you a daily dose of vitamin D, but in this case D stands for ‘Design.’ Design Milk is your daily dose of Design. It’s kind of a weird connection but I think it works!” Her passion for design and sharing her insights with everyone motivates her to continually strive for excellence. A daily serving of Design milk should be requirement for all interior design junkies!
15. Design Shrine: Ty Wenzel is a woman on a mission. Having a history of being both a serious fashionista and NYC bartender, Ty brings a refreshing go-get-‘em attitude to the world of interior design blogging. Design Shrine originally took off as the by-product of endless questions posed her by her admirers, and it continues to draw new devotees daily.
16. Design*Sponge: Grace Bonney’s brainchild, Design Sponge, has come to be known as the paradigmatic interior design blog. With frequent updates (6-8 per day) and a dramatic following, Design Sponge has been called by the New York Times the “Martha Stewart Living for the Millennials”. Grace mentioned to Design55 that “I’ve always been passionate about making my own contemporary furniture. My love of design really grew from there as I learned more about product design and interiors. Now I try to absorb as many different types and sources of design as possible.” Her choice of title for her site reflects this desire to absorb, and absorb she has! The Brooklynite feels that her city’s “upcycling” spirit inspires her creativity and love for rennovation.
17. Designer’s Block UK: Di Overton, creator of Designer’s Block UK, was born in London but moved up to the North East of England when I was only 10. “I live in a tiny hamlet on a hill in the Northumberland National Park a truly inspirational place for a designer to live.” She enjoys taking vintage finds and turning them into new and beautiful items with a touch of 21st century eco-chic. “I am not solely a vintage fan; I love to mix the old with the new, so I suppose I have an eclectic style.” When asked about her other site, Ghost Furniture, she said, “Our tag line is – bringing quality furniture back from the dead and making it hauntingly beautiful.” Di has quite the knack for raising the dead to life in the design world!
18. Dezeen – Marcus Fairs’ Dezeen is a heavy hitter in the interior design world. Its mission is simple: “To bring you a carefully edited selection of the best architecture, design and interiors projects from around the world before anyone else.” Based out of a former doctors’ surgery in Stoke Newington, north London, Dezeen puts their passion to practice! “We don’t stick to one genre – we’ll publish anything that’s interesting and newsworthy, ranging across the fields of architecture, industrial design, installations and exhibitions, fashion, graphics and a little bit of art.” Dezeen is a daily staple for architects and designers around the world – from the biggest studios to first year students – and when they finish a project they want to see it on Dezeen first.
19. Freshome: The people at Freshome maintain an organized and sleek site absolutely loaded with ideas and images! Based out of Romania, Micle and the gang, like most designers these days, have found that their greatest inspiration comes from the internet. Their goal is to return the favor! With an expansive collection of images featuring concepts, homes, and products from all over the world, Freshome has clearly done their homework, so you don’t have to.
20. Furniture Fashion: Will Maack and John Cavers, the founders of Furniture Fashion, are based out of Texas and have a passion for “providing people information about furnishings to beautify and personalize their environment while increasing quality of life through great design and innovation.” Each person’s space is different. Furniture Fashion encourages decorators to use their space wisely and try not to overcrowd a room. “Think about what is most important for you in your lifestyle and find furniture and design objects that support you.” Furniture Fashion seeks to provide all that designers need to make the most of their space.
21. Grassroots Modern: Creede Fitch and Capree Kimball of Grassroots Modern set out to create a modern contemporary design blog for those on a budget! Their philosophy revolves around the fact that if the masses can get their hands on what’s current and exciting in the design world, then, regardless of budget, they can still have up-to-date, and stellar looking homes. There is hope after all.
22. Material Girls: Emily, Lauren, Julia, Jill, and Rebecca are the Material Girls. These trendy friends host one of the hippest interior design blogs on the net, yet none of them even live in the same city! In fact, this works to their strength. Each of the Girls lives in a major cultural capital (Dallas, Houston, Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York) and has the local insight to produce content that suits any locale or personality. A great variety, brought to you by professional designers, all on one site.
23. Moco Loco: Harry Wakefield of Moco Loco is all about modern contemporary design and architecture. With articles and images covering everything from designer furniture to flooring, and home design to home accessories, Moco Loco offers a breathtaking supply of interesting and inspirational pieces/designs from top brands such as Kartell, Calligaris and Magis.
24. My Deco: Brent Hoberman, the founder of My Deco, had a vision in 2008 of inspiring the average person to made the most of their space regardless of the price tag or what the fancy magazines say. Since the My Deco site isn’t exactly commercial in nature, it can afford to offer ideas from over 800 different retailers “from big brands to niche boutiques.” The wide range enables visitors to scan for stylish items regardless of their budget, and style preference. Including modern dining tables, table lamps and TV tables
25. Padstyle: Padstyle specializes in offering stylish furnishing ideas for homes. Unlike many design blogs, Padstyle keeps things approachable and doable. Since they aren’t trying to sell whole rooms at a time in timeless cottages, they do a great service to the eager decorator looking for achievable results.
26. Patricia Gray Interior Design: Patricia Gray is a designer par excellence with a pedigree that would wow anyone. Her innovative work has been featured all over the world, and in many different publications (including the renowned Architectural Digest). Patricia’s warm style and originality have helped skyrocket her to the top of the interior design world, and her blog reflects this.
27. Remodelista: A group of remodeling-enthusiasts (Julie, Janet, Francesca, and Sarah) turned their debates about what is truly beautiful and useful when remodeling, and turned it into a killer blog! They don’t stress about details, but consistently display some of the most creative and inspirational designs you can find. A genuine think-tank of design enthusiasts!
28. Swiss-Miss: Tina Roth Eisenberg, a “Swiss designer gone NYC,” wowed New Yorkers with her work ethic and attention to detail. Swiss-Miss is the fruit of her labor. This design journal highlights the latest trends and showcases useful products for everything interiors. Tina is thrilled by the prospects of being able to translate a message through ideas, forms, colors and typefaces. “I don’t think there is anything more exciting,” she confessed to Design55.
29. The Decorating Diva: Carmen Natschke, the Decorating Diva, is a widely syndicated home décor expert. The Decorating Diva is known for her great interviews of high-profile industry professionals, book reviews, featured websites, and gorgeous gallery of design photos.
30. The Lettered Cottage: Kevin and Layla Palmer (plus Maximus, their Chihuahua) quit their day jobs a few years ago to pursue the DIY dream…and they’re making it happen! “The Lettered Cottage” is the fruit of their labor. The couple is teaming up with High Noon TV to produce a pilot to what they hope will become their very own design show. Like the Petersiks at Young House Love, the Palmers offer you a glimpse of their own design/renovation adventures at home.
31. Trendir: Professional interior designer Lillian Pikus brings her years of experience and expertise to your computer screen by way of Trendir, her design blog. Lillian oversees full house design projects from start to finish, which gives her opinions and insights an incredible level of authority.
32. Young House Love: John and Sherry Petersik are just a young married couple with a passion for DIY. Click on their blog and watch them turn their 49-year-old house into a fashion icon. The couple writes regularly in Better Home and Garden’s DIY magazine and has even made an appearance on HGTV. If you are the DIY type and are looking for a decent crew to emulate, look no further!
33. Your Home, Only Better: Susan Jensen Smith is a native to northern New Jersey, and the daughter of a “chronic re-arranger” mother (which she just assumed was normal). “My passion grew from there!” YHOB focuses on the reality of design: what is functional, economical, and stylish. “While I love eye candy as much as any other home enthusiast, finding the right balance is very satisfying.” Practicality is central to Susan’s philosophy. Her designs are beautiful, yet approachable, and there lies her strength.
By Adam Watson