Mad About The House: How to Decorate Your Home with Style: The Reviews

I hope you will forgive me a little mini-break here. Many of you will be away on holiday for the next few days or busy with friends and family rather than house-hunting or blog-reading. I tend to only take a break from publishing over Christmas but this year, having been so busy with the book launch and its promotion, I’m feeling the need for a few days off to clear my head so I hope you don’t mind if I take allow myself the indulgence of posting a few comments and reviews of the book. Normal service will be resumed on Tuesday.

KWS with book image by Frida Green of Pavilion
KWS with book image by Frida Green of Pavilion

Obviously if this encourages you to buy said book I would be thrilled but you really don’t have to. It’s an edited, prettier, more searchable version of much of the content that has appeared on these pages over the last six years after all. But, in that sense, I hope it is worth having.

I was delighted with a spread in the Sunday Times Home section last weekend. Since it’s behind a paywall I can’t share it all with you but it was an extract on the colour chapter of the book which talks about the meaning of different colours and which rooms to use them in.

extract from Mad About The House in The Sunday Times Home section
extract from Mad About The House in The Sunday Times Home section

There was also an extract on my top 10 design hacks in Stella Magazine, which I can’t seem to link to but you know the drill on that front as I have written about them before.

I was both thrilled that it sold out so fast on Amazon and then worried that it was out of stock for a week but it’s back now. If you have bought a copy and would like to leave a review then please do. That encourages Amazon, a complicated law unto itself, to manage the rankings and order more copies.

mad about the book image by @lifes_illusions_kellie
mad about the book image by @lifes_illusions_kellie

This is one from there: “The second book from interiors journalist Kate Watson-Smyth ticks all the boxes. At a time when Pinterest is our go-to inspiration tool, guiding us through all our renovation and styling projects, Watson-Smyth realises that the overload of information can actually result in our taking longer to plan and even longer to execute projects of all sizes.

“The book is then divided into chapters, each one dedicated to a different room in the house. Handy checklists help readers focus on key takeaways. With a good sense of humour (the book is written in the style of the author’s interiors blog) and beautiful illustrations throughout, this book will be the perfect reference point for those embarking on a renovation project, first time home buyers looking to make changes and have no idea where to start.

praise for mad about the house the book by @west_end_refurb
praise for mad about the house the book by @west_end_refurb

Everything has been covered, from storage to bedside tables to finishing touches like the light switches. And when you’re done with the renovation, it will look brilliant on your coffee table too.”

Another: “An absolutely fantastic book. It answers all those questions you thought we’re too stupid to ask. It guides you through the whole process of designing your home or just a single room. It’s like having someone holding your hand saying “you can do this!” Kate doesn’t tell you what design you should go for she helps you to create your own style and designs. Great for amateur interior designers like me.”

mad about the house the book by @theponderwarlow
mad about the house the book by @theponderwarlow

And thank you to anyone who has pictured the book on Instagram:

@awelshmamaskitchen: Love the book – the first interior design book I have ever bought.

@flames_house: Your book arrived today and it is absolutely brilliant. I love your writing style, your practical approach and the invaluable advice. Plus it’s because of you I have the perfect pink in my kitchen.

@megmegarmitage (private account): I was up until midnight reading. I am about to paint the whole house and was feeling so overwhelmed… but your book encouraged me to go with some of the brave decisions I had been thinking about and I went to bed happy. And I cancelled my radiator covers, which I knew were going to look naff.

mad about the house the book image by @meganaceinteriors
mad about the house the book image by @meganaceinteriors

@journalist_sadie: The gorgeous colours on the cover have already solved my dining room decor dilemmas.

@housenumberthirteen: So I jumped on the bandwagon and what an inspirational bandwagon to be on… I rarely finish a book but can’t see me having trouble with this one.

And that about sums it up. I wanted a book that was readable and useful and not just pretty. Thank you so much allowing me this indulgence and I’ll see you on Tuesday. Wishing you all a lovely long weekend. May your kids’ sugar rush be slight and your wine glass overflowing.

Now if you would like to order it, the fastest way – apart from going into a shop (and it’s coming soon to Oliver Bonas as well as being in Anthropologie in Bath and Regent Street) – is probably Amazon. Otherwise if you prefer to buy from elsewhere, and I know many people do, here is a list of alternatives and thank you once again for a welcoming my book so warmly into the world.

Rockett St George: The interiors book we have been dying to get our hands on

The Book Depository



A Great Read

The Little House of Hygge

Kate Watson-Smyth

The author Kate Watson-Smyth

I’m a journalist who writes about interiors mainly for The Financial Times but I have also written regularly for The Independent and The Daily Mail. My house has been in Living Etc, HeartHome and featured in The Wall Street Journal & Corriere della Sera. I also run an interior styling consultancy Mad About Your House. Welcome to my Mad House.


  1. Just ordered book, and Shades of Grey at the same time! You are always an endless sense of inspiration and I look forward to opening your blog with a cup of coffee on the mornings you post. So having books too means I can enjoy with a glass of wine in the evenings. Happy Easter! Emma


  3. I’m anxiously awaiting the June release date here in the US. Thank you for the heads up.

  4. Hello Kate, I discovered your first book in a french version then subscribed to your newsletters (Thanks for your awesome work !). I just wanted to know if you also plan to sell your new book in french in a near future ? I cant wait to read it 🙂

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