My Favorite Pretty Farm Books or Pretty Country Living Books That Inspire Me, Aesthetically
Sometimes, I just want to peruse an aesthetically-pleasing, pretty farm book full of editorial-worthy photography and inspiring words on country living.
Now, I am fully aware that behind the pretty dresses galavanting across flower-speckled fields was countless hours on a muddy tractor getting that field planted and ready.
And I know, more than anyone, how behind the sweet faces of “adorable” farm animals is a lot of…well, crap.
But sometimes, I want to enjoy the romantic ideas of country living. I want to take a break on how to build a homestead. Instead, I want to get swept away dreaming of lovely estates, multiple-acre gardens, feeding Babydoll Sheep in a ballgown.
In this post, I’m sharing a few of my favorite “Pretty Farm Books” for when you too want get swept away and weave your own Jane Austen worthy country living dreams.
A few of my Favorite Pretty Farm Books:
- French Country Cooking by Mimi Thorisson
- Patina Living by Brooke Giannetti
- Farm from Home by Amanda Brooks
- Hill House Living by Paula Sutton
Learn more about each of these pretty farm books below!
French Country Cooking: A Dream Country Life in Médoc, France
Yes, this is a cookbook. But no, it is not like any other cookbook.
I devoured this book like it was a romance novel, reading every story, ingredient and Conde-Nast-worthy image when I first discovered Mimi. Her life is a dream, and at this moment, she and her family were living in Médoc, France. Surrounded by farms, they resided in a chateau—of course.
Not only does this cookbook feature beautiful and delicious recipes—make the orange cake, you’ll thank me later. But, the photography of the farms and countryside are absolutely swoon-worthy.
It was the picture from Blackberry Farm in the 2012 Architectural Digest Magazine (see image above), with its stray sheep that got me thinking years ago about having sheep of our own some day. However, it was learning about Babydoll Sheep through Brooke Giannetti that got our plans moving and farm dream happening.
This is a pretty farm book that I think interior designers, architects and those looking for inspiration of upscale and elegant hobby farms. Living in Ojai, California, has its perks including beautiful weather and terrain for the picturesque backdrop to this farmette.
Therefore, not only is there beautiful inspiration here, but Brooke does a fine job providing some good information about her animals and gardens that I found helpful too!
Farm from Home: A Truly Pretty Farm Book About Fashion Editor Moving to the English Countryside
I especially enjoyed this book. Because, I read it shortly after selling my magazine. It felt like—whilst on very different scales—my life situation paralleled Amanda’s life. She was a fashion editor in New York who decided to move her family to her husband’s English countryside home.
It was interesting to get a peek into the glamorous life she lived before and what giving up that fast-paced living to work on their farm and with the horses affected her. If you’re looking for a good story about moving to the country and you’re seeking that very high end and elegant inspiration without losing its grit, this is it.
This book will always hold a special place in my heart and on my shelf.
Hill House Living: Finding Joy in Everyday Country Living
Paula is perhaps my favorite person on Instagram. When it seems like the world is just too chaotic and I’ve had enough of social media, I always joke that I will keep Instagram just to follow her.
This post of hers from 2020 is one that I have saved and re-read every few weeks. It is so lovely and encouraging to see someone so unapologetically joyful, and eager to find beauty in everything.
Her book does not disappoint either. Not only is it beautiful, but her words—much like her Instagram—are so encouraging and rooted in so much joy. I got teary-eyed just reading the first chapter.
I highly recommend her book to anyone, pursuing country living or not, for the inspiration and encouragement she brings to living a joyful life every day, no matter your circumstance.
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