Launch day: Home for Now is officially On Sale!

Home for Now book with Hyacinths by Joanna Thornhill

It seems simultaneously like five minutes and a lifetime ago that I sat at my desk and received an email from Cico Books saying (not in these exact words) that they were willing to take a punt on little ol’ me and my slightly rambling idea for a book aimed at renters and first-time buyers. Today, that book is here (well, OK, Amazon has been selling it for about a week and someone tweeted me to say it was in Waterstones in Thurrock on the weekend) but it’s all properly official now – I’m an author! A rather almighty tick off the bucket-list there…

I wrote at length in this post about the reasons I wanted to write the book, and to highlight the amazing contributors’ homes featured within it, so I shall try not to repeat myself – instead, I thought I’d explain a little more about its contents, showing one of my favourite images from each chapter:

1. Living Spaces:

Tom Chalet's Living Room, as featured in Home for Now by Joanna Thornhill

Broken down into Seating Areas, Wall & Display, Storage Solutions and Open-plan Living, this is the chunkiest chapter in the book. Detailing everything from styling ideas for less-than-lovely hand-me-down sofas to turning an old wardrobe into stylish living room storage, it explains how to make the most of your communal space, whether you live in a shared rental or have it all to yourself. It also contains step-by step illustrated projects for creating your own no-sew upholstery chair, turning an old drawer into a printer’s-tray-inspired set of mini display shelves and making over a chest of drawers with wallpaper, for when you can’t add pattern to your walls.

{image: the living room of Tom Chalet, where he has cleverly added character to his newbuild flat by cladding the walls himself in old scaffolding planks, cut to length by hand on his balcony. Get a smaller-scale version of the look in a rental by simply leaning some old wood against a wall to add character and texture}

2. Kitchens and Dining Areas:

Hannah Ricci's kitchen dining room, as featured in Home for Now by Joanna Thornhill

Often considered a no-go room for making changes in unless you are able to rip the space apart and start again, this chapter shows that there are plenty of workaround ideas – from hiding a landlord’s ugly tiles with removable tile stickers to removing cupboard doors to create an open-shelving effect (stashing the doors behind the sofa ready to reattach when required!) It also details practical elements, such as how to add extra storage without building anything in, plus introducing impactful design ideas to help the space feel less functional, as showcased with this ingenious removable wall mural from Surface View.

{image: the rented kitchen/dining room of Hannah Ricci, personalised with a giant wall mural to add character to the otherwise featureless space. Note the old drinks crate – upturned to provide handy storage for herbs and spices – and the vintage table used as a makeshift island unit, which visually divides the kitchen and dining areas}

3. Bedrooms and Bathrooms:

Karin Lindroos' bed nook, as featured in Home for Now by Joanna Thornhill

From the tiniest nook to a multi-purpose corner of a studio apartment and even a section on children’s room ideas, the Bedrooms section covers off everything from clever uses of furniture and all-important storage ideas, to how to decorate this intimate room for added – and temporary – interest. And like kitchens, although the bathroom is often considered an unchangeable space (especially for renters) this section details clever ideas to make the best of this space without undertaking dramatic or costly changes, from reversible flooring ideas to more decorative touches, all designed to create a sanctuary out of even the most uninspiring of rooms.

{image: the tiny bedroom of Karin Lindroos, situated inside an old porch, shows that you needn’t shy away of colour in a small space – rather, it can help create a cosy sanctuary. A bit of creative thinking, such as using an old wall-mounted telephone table for bedside storage and hanging pouches on the wall to hold sunglasses and phone chargers – makes the most of its diminutive proportions}

4. Creative Workspaces:

Clare Nicolson's craft:work:dining table in her studio flat, as featured in Home for Now by Joanna Thornhill

Whether you work from home and are lucky enough to have a dedicated workspace, or simply like to keep a corner of another room free for catching up on crafts and paperwork, this section is packed with ideas for both home offices and craft areas, and focuses on ways to keep organised without compromising on aesthetic, particularly when said space is a part of another room. From ways to create a ‘hidden’ workspace to tips on organising paperwork or craft supplies stylishly, there are also full instructions to create your own cute wall-mounted hanging storage rack.

{image: the versatile craft/work desk-cum-dining-table in the studio flat of textiles designer and stylist Clare Nicolson – its fold-down sides means it can be stowed against the wall when not needed for entertaining guests}

5. Plants and Outdoor Living

Ninete Bahne's garden, as featured in Home for Now by Joanna Thornhill

With plants so important both inside and outside the home for adding life to any space (there is proper research to show they can both lift your mood as well as purifying the air around them), this chapter includes some basics for first-time indoor or outdoor gardeners, as well as ideas for adding greenery to your home even if space is limited, such as making macrame hanging baskets (with instructions provided) as well as ways to style simple garden flowers indoors. And for those who do have a garden but are perhaps reluctant to do much to it if it’s not your forever home, there are lots of styling tips and tricks to help transform the space without spending much money, leaving it ready to simply take away with you when you move on.

{image: a corner of Ninette Bahne’s garden, featuring a simple picnic bench painted fresh white, topped with a homemade hanging decoration, created from fabric scraps}

The book has already been doing brilliantly in pre-sales so a big thank-you to anyone who has already snapped up a copy, and for those who haven’t, the Amazon UK link is here. For any non-UK readers, check out my dedicated page on my website, which details other countries selling the book, including shop links where available. This page also details all the press coverage the book has been receiving – and as well as features in Elle Decoration, Good Homes, Homes & Property and Your Home, there’s been some fantastic online coverage from the likes of Mad About the House, Nothin’ but the Rent and Chalky Paint. If you’ve got a copy of the book and have tried out any of the ideas in it, do get in touch and share your creations!

{Image Credits: Top image taken by Joanna Thornhill. All other images taken from Home for Now by Joanna Thornhill (Cico Books); with photography by Emma Mitchell (shots 1, 2 & 4) and James Gardiner (shots 3 & 5)

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About Joanna Thornhill

Freelance Interior Stylist, Author, Writer and Crafter working for a range of magazine titles and commercial clients. Author of Home for Now (CICO Books 2014)

2 responses to “Launch day: Home for Now is officially On Sale!”

  1. Found This Painted That says :

    That’s fantastic! Congrats – I’m trying unsuccessfully not to be too jealous. The pics you shared are beautiful examples – I hope you do really well!

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