Have I ever told you that I’m a self-help geek and business book junkie? It’s true! I’m a firm believer that we can always learn and improve, especially when we approach improvement from the desire to grow.
Despite all of the challenges of running a design business during COVID-19, including installations on pause and team meetings via Zoom, it has its silver linings too. This time feels perfect for reconnecting with ourselves and deciding what’s really important.
If you love personal development too, have dreams for updating your home, or simply love looking at beautiful spaces like we do, today’s blog post is for you. We’ve put together a jam-packed collection of some of our favorite things — inspirational resources!
We have some resources for interior design inspiration, for business and productivity tips, and even for enhancing your personal life and connecting with family.
Whether it’s this week, two weeks from now, or a year down the road, I hope these resources brighten your days and help you live vibrantly.
Resources for Interior Design Inspiration
Fill your days with beauty, inspiration, and maybe even a plan for your future design project! Here are some of our favorite places to virtually hang out…
Although they may be well known, these websites below continue to provide inspiration for professional interior designers and design enthusiasts alike. Sometimes tried-and-true is the way to go!
1. I’m sure you’re no stranger to prominent interior design sites such as Apartment Therapy, MyDomaine, and Style Me Pretty Living, and it’s probably because these sites are a destination for home décor inspiration as well as many other lifestyle topics.
2. The Business of Home is an always up-to-date and informative website for our industry, from design inspiration to trade and market insights.
5. Houzz is a great place to start looking for inspiration. You can get a sense of what design elements you like, especially if you’re planning a project.
6. Same goes for Pinterest. Pinterest is a great place to make boards by room, get to know your design aesthetic, and eventually share your preferences with your designer!
I regularly listen to these podcasts for advice for growing the business, and to get ideas about what systems and services fellow interior designers are implementing. I would highly recommend listening if you are interested in starting an interior design company, or just want to know more about the industry.
1. The A Well Designed Business podcast by LuAnn Nigara is a must-listen for any professional designer. LuAnn offers a no-nonsense approach to building a “well designed business” and every episode is filled with real takeaways that can be implemented right away.
2. The Business of Design podcast hosted by Kimberly Seldon is another information-rich podcast that offers insight from a well-established and actively working designer.
1. Studio McGee shows gorgeous behind-the-scenes videos of their home renovation and design projects coming together. Our aesthetics might be a bit different — Studio McGee is all about those soothing neutrals — but we’re always fans of beautiful work!
2. There’s no other word for it — Karin Bohn’s channel is FUN. She shows viewers design inspiration from around the world, takes you on virtual project tours, and shares design tips you can consume and implement right at home.
Books Full of Design Inspiration
You know we love inspirational design books! These books also happen to have beautiful spines, which is always a requirement for fabulous shelf and coffee table styling.
1. You won’t see your home in quite the same way after reading Living with Color by Rebecca Atwood! She teaches you how to look at color in your space, how to create a palette that sets the mood, and how to express yourself with color at home for vibrant living every day.
2. With gorgeous photos, rich explanations, and actionable tips, Living with Pattern (also by Rebecca Atwood) is any design-lover’s guide to patterns at home. From tile flooring to backsplash, drapery to furniture, Rebecca will show you how it’s done!
3. New York School of Interior Design: The Foundations of Enduring Spaces. We have about 4 copies of this book in our inventory. Besides using the book for styling in our projects, it is a great resource about interior design for novices and pros alike!
4. Inspired Design by Jennifer Boles shares 100 of the most famous designers over 100 years of history, along with beautiful photos. It’s impossible not to be inspired by this book, and we can’t get enough of the patterned spine.
Resources on Productivity, Business & Life
1. The Productivity Straight Talk podcast hosted by Amber De LaGarza, (who may I mention is a gem of a person) is a productivity and business podcast. Amber shares tips for working smarter and maximizing your results in less time. Bonus: It always helps to be organized when planning a design project.
2. Build Your Best Family, hosted by Kimberly and Carl Amici, is all about creating an intentional family culture and, well…building your best family! ☺ They discuss a wide range of topics relating to family dynamics. They also frequently host experts and leaders, in addition to sharing their personal journey on creating a family culture with intention. Kimberly is a dear, life-long friend of mine and it’s been a joy to see her work in her sweet spot!
Books That Encourage Growth & Improvement
1. The E-Myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber is a fantastic read for any small business owner who is looking to run their business, not be run by it.
2. I found The One Thing by Gary Keller to offer eye-opening inspiration for going farther faster with goal-setting and achieving, for business and for life.
3. Atomic Habits by James Clear is one of the few books I’ve read that offer an actionable and simple approach to lasting habit change, from daily productivity and health to business goals.
4. Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by George McKeown is a refreshing look at prioritizing essential tasks rather than trying to do more in less time. If you feel like you can’t be everywhere at once (or that you wish you had a cloned version of yourself to get more done), this book could be helpful.
5. The Birth Order Book by Kevin Leman is an insightful look at how birth order and family dynamics shape our personalities, work styles, parenting styles, and more. A great read if you’re looking to understand the people in your life better, in life or in business.
6. Our business manager Judy gifted You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero to all the members on our team. It’s a riot, full of motivation, and will have you pursuing the dreams you’ve been secretly (or not so secretly) wishing you could chase.
1. Want to add some color to your feed? Follow @katiekime to be transported to a world of unique patterns in a rainbow of colors. And speaking of rainbow, I have to mention @colormecourtney’s page because it’s just so happy.
2. Follow @DrWendyOConnor, a psychologist and life coach, for daily inspiration, motivation, and getting off “auto-pilot,” as she says. Wendy is another friend of mine, and I can assure you that she is the real deal!
3. If you’re looking for a couple new lifestyle accounts to follow, I enjoy @Houseofsixinteriors because she focuses on living a simple, beautiful and low waste way of life, and @nestingwithgrace’s posts give a daily look at her real family dynamic.
4. You’re probably no stranger to this lady, but I love to follow @Em_Henderson for entertaining blog posts, IGTV stories about everyday life and balancing business with family. And of course, design inspiration!
Vibrant Living’s Resources
Last but not least, I couldn’t end this blog post without giving a shameless plug: the Vibrant Living blog. Our team has worked so hard to write on topics that you’ll love and find helpful, whether you want beautiful inspiration, actionable tips, behind-the-scenes peeks, or just a laugh with friends.
Here are some of our top posts, but I know you’ll find even more to love if you pour a glass and stay awhile! 😉
- Designing a Kitchen for Entertaining (we’re all going to need a lot of this in our future!)
- What Does a Design Timeline Really Look Like?
- Which Colors will Inspire Your Most Extraordinary Life
All these should certainly keep you busy and entertained, but you can also get your hands on our downloadable resources. We created these to help you plan your design project and get tips for color and styling on your own. 😉
If there’s anything we can do to make your time at home more enjoyable and vibrant, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We love what we do, and underneath all the design hours and installations is our burning passion to help YOU live vibrantly!