By Mary-Kate Tucto
Virginia-born and Atlanta-based interior designer Barbara Westbrook knows a thing or two about design. More than 20 years into her career, she has established herself as an expert on décor designed to be beautiful, comfortable, and so inviting that guests want to come in and sit a spell. Her debut book, Gracious Rooms, acts as a guide to blending polished, classic looks with rustic or modern touches.
“Every home has a message to deliver, even before you start decorating.”
With 237 glossy pages bursting with inspiration, Gracious Rooms proves that any palette, when executed with care, can be welcoming and relaxing. Each of the book’s 10 chapters addresses a different design principle stemming from Barbara’s simple, universal approach to design: “Make it beautiful.” She guides readers in utilizing light, symmetry, detail, space, color, surroundings, and other nuances to create rooms that make them feel something—warm, calm, happy, or whatever feeling they wish to evoke. Barbara emphasizes that each room’s details should match the homeowner’s taste. Whether bright or muted, ornate or simple, she encourages readers to “remind yourself what makes you happiest in spaces,” then harness that inspiration to create the rooms of their dreams.