Monday, May 5, 2014

The Nesting Place: Review

The Nesting Place: It Doesn't Have to Be Perfect to Be Beautiful
The Nesting Place: It Doesn't Have to be Perfect to be Beautiful by Myquillyn Smith
Publisher: Zondervan
Publishing Date: April 29, 2014
Visit the Author's website HERE
Check out the Book Launch page HERE
Goodreads Summary:
Perfection is overrated.
Popular blogger and self-taught decorator Myquillyn Smith (The Nester) is all about embracing reality---especially when it comes to decorating a home bursting with boys, pets, and all the unpredictable messes of life.In The Nesting Place, Myquillyn shares the secrets of decorating for real people---and it has nothing to do with creating a flawless look to wow your guests. It has everything to do with embracing the natural imperfection and chaos of daily living.Drawing on her years of experience creating beauty in her 13 different homes, Myquillyn will show you how to think differently about the true purpose of your home and simply and creatively tailor it to reflect you and your unique style---without breaking the bank or stressing over comparisons. Full of easy tips, simple steps, and practical advice, The Nesting Place will give you the courage to take risks with your home and transform it into a place that's inviting and warm for family and friends.There is beauty in the lived-in and loved-on and just-about-used-up, Myquillyn says, and welcoming that imperfection wholeheartedly just might be the most freeing thing you'll ever do.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher via Booklook in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. Buy the hardcopy for $11.99 on Amazon today! (5/3/14)

My Thoughts:
I have only loosely followed The Nester, as Myquillyn is commonly known, on her blog, just popping in here and there. It is chock full of encouraging tips and picture after picture. But I knew I had to read her book because I have been in such a home renovation/improvement mood.

However, "The Nesting Place" is not a beginner's book. Smith isn't writing this book to complete newbies or those who pretty much lack the decorating gene. She isn't going to help you determine your perfect color scheme or help you pick which room to start in first. This was a bit of a letdown for me. I fall into the 'those who lack the decorating gene' category and could use LOTS of help. Smith doesn't leave us completely hanging; she does give general ideas for decorating, thrifting, and repurposing. Mostly just small tips and encouragement.

As someone who lacks the decorating gene, some of Smith's tips fell flat for me. She trusts that everyone has extra decorations or furniture laying about to reuse, move around, and repurpose. I don't. I have exactly what I need and not much more. I am also not very crafty, so making a slipcover?? Beyond me. Obviously, this is a personal problem, but it really affected how I read and reacted to the book. Some of Smith's tips for decorating cheaply frustrated me because they are things I can't employ myself, which kept me from truly taking away from the book.

But Smith's general purpose, and main focus, of "The Nesting Place" was her tagline: It doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful. This was a love/hate relationship for me. I would chuckle out loud at Smith's definition of 'imperfect', which just seemed to be a house that is lived in. After cruising through hundreds of pictures of her house, I am pretty sure it is just about perfect. Any imperfections seemed to be staged (a clown nose on her white bust vase) or a result of simply living with humans (shoes on the floor, blankets on the couch). What would she think of my home with it's cookie cutter cabinets, toddler toys sprawled everywhere, and five year old couch cushions?? I shudder to know.

image via The Nester

But her point was also freeing for me. She tells her readers to just try, it is okay to fail, no one has to know! What a simple revolution, but like I said, completely freeing for me. Smith also provided some simple tips to get husbands on board. I've been taking her idea of starting small and creating wins on my husband. It's slow going..... but I think it is working!

"The Nesting Place" is motivational. I feel super inspired to make my house into our home. Hubby and I are slowly but surely going to be making changes to our bathroom (my least favorite room at the moment. Perhaps I will share a little as we go along. This book was definitely worth the read and might even be worth the re-read as we continue to work on our home. Smith's "31 Days of Home. On Purpose", a quick and easy read, is something I would recommend reading through if you are a newbie like me and looking for more motivation, inspiration, and practical tips.

If you are a long time reader of the Nester, I don't think you will find much new content in her first book. Even most of the pictures I have seen on her blog. I think you will still find it an enjoyable read. And if you are completely new to the Nester, I think you will enjoy this book more than others. Everything will be new and fresh for you. I also believe that readers who are already into decorating and design will benefit more than complete newbies. I'm rating it with 4 stars, because after all the 'negative' I shared, the inspiration and motivation that Smith shares outweighs any of that bad.


  1. Although I don't really have the opportunity to decorate my house at the moment, I really love thinking about what I would do if I could - and I love the look of Myquillyn's blog pictures! They seem pretty simple and easy (probably it's still pricey though) but I plan to bookmark her blog and maybe pick up the book for future inspiration! I'm so happy I read your review!

  2. Thanks Charlene! I think what the Nesting Place was great at addressing was how to decorate when we don't have the opportunity (whether rental, money, etc). I hope you get a chance to pick it up and get inspired!