Confession time. I’ve flipped through more than my share of shelter books, but never taken the time to read them. The Things That Matter changed all of that. Because wow, I couldn’t put this book down. Instead of simply showing his readers pretty pictures (of which there are plenty included), Berkus takes us not only inside the homes of clients and friends but inside their stories. Into the personal meaning behind the objects they surround themselves with, into the stories of how they were acquired, and into why they’ll never let them go.
The book is set up according to person instead of by chapter. It was pure serendipity that Barbara Hill’s converted dance hall home in Marfa, Texas was among them, as I’d just discovered and fell in love with it in a magazine about a week ago. Favorite living room ever. And over her kitchen sink there’s a sign proclaiming ‘Make Tacos Not War’. For real!
Berkus also opens up about his own home and life, parts of which honestly made me teary. He has such a way of relating to people and sharing their stories that I can’t help but think maybe this is the medium he was meant for. It’s definitely my favorite interiors book, and has earned a permanent place on my coffee table and given me loads of ideas about the things that really matter to me.
Disclaimer: I received an advance copy of this book at no charge. The opinions are my own.