Cover image for Classic interior design : using period finishes in today's home
Classic interior design : using period finishes in today's home
Spencer-Churchill, Henrietta, 1958-
Publication Information:
New York : Rizzoli, 2003.
Physical Description:
176 pages : color illustrations ; 31 cm
General Note:
Includes index.

Published in 2001 with the title: Classic design styles.
Added Uniform Title:
Classic design styles.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
NK1710 .S643 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area-Oversize

On Order



Reveals the best of furnishing detail from the most enduring decorating styles.

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

In her newest volume, fine-living doyenne Spencer-Churchill presents a regally illustrated guide to applying, and adapting, period detail to contemporary homes. The author, who is the eldest daughter of the 11th Duke of Marlborough, offers examples of both American and English homes and breaks down her chapters according to period (e.g., Baroque & Queen Anne, American Empire, Victorian, Regency). Each section begins with a brief history of the style at hand before focusing on particular design elements, such as walls, stairs and beds. For example, in one chapter, Spencer-Churchill explains that ?Federal style can provide the basis for a scheme that is cozy and intimate or relatively grand, depending upon the room?s architectural features,? then she presents a full-page photo that wonderfully captures the period?s ?sweeping circular or elliptical wooden staircases.? In a chapter on Victorian style, Spencer-Churchill explains, ?Just as an empty bit of floor space would be anathema to the Victorian householder, so every bit of wall space was also there to be put to good use.? Accessibly written and nicely designed (with two photos per two-page spread), this coffee-table book offers many suggestions for either introducing period style into new houses, or redoing period homes. (Oct.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Library Journal Review

Period architecture and decoration are examined in these books by two well-known interior design writers. Gilliatt (Mary Gilliatt's Complete Room by Room Decorating Guide) leaves out the "nuts and bolts" of home restoration, which she feels has been well covered in other books, and instead focuses on the decision-making process of whether to renovate or restore older homes, which she defines as those built between the 16th century and the 1950s. In the first half of the book, she reviews decorative styles in Europe, Britain, and the United States, followed by the history and development of such architectural features as windows, doors, and staircases, all provided to assist with identifying home styles. The remaining portion includes 350 color photographs of individual homes from around the world that have been faithfully restored, completely renovated, or transformed from their original purpose-such as a railway station converted into living quarters. Spencer-Churchill (Classic Georgian Style; Classic English Interiors) describes interior decorating styles from 17th-century Baroque to late 19th-century Victorian. This internationally known designer provides examples of the appropriate type of furniture, halls, windows, and floors for each style and accompanies her examples with 200 color photographs. Although not intended for the faithful re-creation of a period interior, the suggestions will allow an amateur decorator to add proper period touches to a contemporary home. Neither book surpasses Katherine Sorrell's The Ultimate Home Style Guide or Lawrence Schwin's Decorating Old House Interiors for practical advice on period decor, but both books would be appropriate for libraries whose patrons have a great interest in period decorating styles. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.