5 Favorite Coffee Table Books

Written by: Mollie Jahnke

Photographs: @ThePorchePlace

No gathering space is complete without a great coffee table book. They’re a fantastic way to show your guests your passions and interests, they bring people together and make great conversation pieces during a cocktail or dinner party, and add a sophisticated design element to your space.

I also love taking a few moments for myself on a weekend morning to sip a cup of coffee and flip through some of my favorite coffee table books. Not only do these look beautiful, but they have so much great information to learn inside them as well! 

Coffee table books make a great gift for friends and family, or for yourself! I have found that I treat myself to a new coffee table book probably more often than I should, but I think it’s not a bad habit to have. Below are some of my favorite coffee table books not only because of their beauty but also for their helpful, interesting, and insightful content.




WHY WE LOVE IT: In my own design style, I tend to consistently utilize and stick to neutrals, but Eric has created so many traditional, beautiful spaces filled with color that still have that strong, traditional look. This has inspired me to be more adventurous with my own home design in healthy and easy ways that take me out of my design comfort zone.

THE JUICY DETAILS: Living in Georgia has given me a strong appreciation for all things Southern, especially the centuries-old traditional interior design style. Eric Ross explains how he styled various salons and sitting rooms, husband’s studies, breakfast rooms, etc. which are rooms I don’t have in my own home, but I can appreciate the attention to detail and deep thought behind designing each and every one of them. I love Eric Ross’s “Enduring Southern Homes” because it showcases some of his most beautiful and extravagant projects and gives tips on how to create your very own enduring home, regardless of where you live or how large your space is.

WHERE TO BUY: $38.99, Target


WHY WE LOVE IT: I love that Lonely Planet does everything they can to make these five hundred locations as accessible to their readers as possible. They provide tips on how to get there, when the best times are to visit, and additional insights that most tourists aren’t aware of.

THE JUICY DETAILS: This is the ultimate coffee table book for anyone who loves to travel. One of my goals is to visit every continent on this earth (only two more to go!). Looking through this book and seeing the places I have visited gives me a strong sense of accomplishment, but also seeing hundreds of interesting and beautiful places humbles me and reminds me that this world is so incredibly large and that there is still so much to see. Every time I open it up, I feel a strong sense of wanderlust and can’t wait for the next time I hop on an airplane.

WHERE TO BUY: $13.99, Target


WHY WE LOVE IT: This book is not only filled with gorgeous photos of different seasonal floral arrangements. I love that it includes detailed instructions on how to re-create dozens of floral designs, as well as inspiration and techniques that allow you to create your own unique piece of art.

THE JUICY DETAILS: Having fresh flowers in my home is something so important to me, and creating floral arrangements that use local, in-season flowers are not only more affordable, but the arrangements create a deeper connection between our home to our region and current season. Ariella Chezar teaches us how to create a charming spring bouquet for Mother's Day to a bold garland for a summer wedding, and from a luscious Thanksgiving table to a wintery holiday wreath. There are arrangements for seasonal holidays, special occasions, and everyday life featuring tulips, roses, peonies, dahlias, and other favorite flowers that are easily found at farmers' markets, local shops, or grown in your own backyard.

WHERE TO BUY: $25.00, Target

2. “Home Body”


WHY WE LOVE IT: Joanna Gaines is all about making sure that the way homes are designed not only focus on beauty but practicality for whatever season of life you are in. She provides tips throughout the book that help you create incredible spaces throughout your home that you will love so much, you’ll never want to leave.

THE JUICY DETAILS: Like so many Americans, I was captivated by Chip and Joanna Gaines when they first appeared on HGTV’s “Fixer Upper.” I have since read all of their books they’ve published including “The Magnolia Story” and “Capital Gaines” and love every single thing they do. What I love about “Homebody” is that it teaches you so much about concepts interior designers have extensive knowledge of and use every day. The beginning of the book gives an overview of different design styles, then dives into how to take different rooms in your home and make them your very own. Joanna provides examples of how each room can still function similarly, no matter what your design style is, from modern to boho to traditional and beyond.

WHERE TO BUY: $19.60, Target


WHY WE LOVE IT: All of the recipes in this book are so, so good! My favorites are definitely Dorothea’s Tea Punch (I include the optional vodka) and Brother John’s Ribs with Cheddar Biscuits and Braised Collard Greens in Smoky Ham Hock Broth.

THE JUICY DETAILS: In addition to Joanna Gaines, I don’t think I’ve ever met someone who doesn’t want to be Reese Witherspoon. It sometimes feels like everything this woman touches turns to gold, so when I found out she was writing her own book, I was overwhelmed with excitement and immediately per-ordered it online. “Whiskey in a Teacup” is all about Reese’s Southern heritage and how it leads her life. According to Reese’s grandmother, “[Southern women] may be delicate and ornamental on the outside, but inside we’re strong and fiery.” The beautiful book is filled with wonderful stories of her life growing up, tried-and-true Southern recipes, decor and entertainment tips, favorite traditions, and more.

WHERE TO BUY: $15.80, Target



We would love to hear from you!

Do you purchase way too many coffee table books like me? Are you looking to start including more coffee table books in your home? Share your thoughts and/or favorite books in the comments below!


Written By: Mollie Jahnke, Photographs: @ThePorchePlace

DecoratingEmily Porche