The Reading Room

Ideas for lovers of architecture, design and gardening


If you’re a fan of Matthew Patrick Smyth, make a beeline for the
bookstore to pick up Living Traditions (Monacelli Press, 2011). The interior designer’s first book is filled with more than 200 gorgeous images of Smyth-designed interiors from the U.S. and abroad, in styles perfectly suited for their spaces. You’ll reach for it again and again for inspiration or simply to gaze upon visions of beauty. $60, Diane’s Books, Greenwich, (203) 869-1515,




New Traditional Architecture (Rizzoli, 2011), the first book dedicated to the incredible architectural work of Parish-Hadley alums Mark Ferguson and Oscar Shamamian, features stunning residences from all over the country, including a handful in the Constitution state. $75, Elm Street Books, New Canaan, (203) 966-4545,




The Decorative Carpet (Crown Publishing Group, 2010) by expert Alix G. Perrachon is a comprehensive guide to placing handmade carpets in contemporary spaces. Perrachon’s own home will be featured on the C&G-sponsored Larchmont Historical Society House Tour, during which the author will also hold a book signing. $50, Barrett Bookstore, Darien, (203) 655-2712,





Gardeners and history buffs alike will love Founding Gardeners (Knopf, 2011) by Andrea Wulf, in which she reveals just how important the balance of nature was in the politics of the first four U.S. presidents. $30, Elm Street Books, New Canaan, (203) 966-4545, and




Sis Boom fabrics creator Jennifer Paganelli presents 21 adorable sewing projects your favorite little girl will love in Girl’s World (Chronicle Books, 2011). Dresses, pillows, bed canopies and stuffed animals are all included, with styles perfect for toddlers through tweens. $24.95, R.J. Julia, Madison, (203) 245-3959,