Book Review: Jungalow Decorate Wild by Justina Blakeney

And now for something completely different: wild interiors!


Decorating your home is a very personal thing – nobody’s tastes match exactly with anyone else’s, which means that finding the perfect inspiration can challenge us all. In some ways, my colorful and maximalist preferences are easy to work with (sure, paint that wall green! and pair it with mustard curtains!); in other ways, I find myself intimidated by all the big, bright, beautiful décor options out there and puzzleimage001 (5).jpg over how to make them all feel like they belong together in the same space.


Enter Justina Blakeney. She has two items in our collection at Charles City Public Library – The New Bohemians, which was published in 2015, and Jungalow. I adore both of these books, but today I want to focus on her newer one, named after her home décor brand. If the name doesn’t give it away, Jungalow focuses on bringing the “jungle” into your home to give it a little more flair.


I put “jungle” in quotes on purpose – Blakeney covers a lot of things that could fit under an umbrella of jungle-ish. Jungles have a lot of plants, to give an obvious example, so she has a whole chapter on plants to bring into your space to give it a new vibe. Less into plants but more into the colors and patterns you might find on jungle animals? Color and patterns – and how to layer them in fun ways – each have their own chapter! If you’re like me and are kind of into all of it, she talks about that too and even breaks it down into how you can mix different inspirations together in a space to make it all look seamless (her concept of “Tropic-talian” is my personal favorite!). It’s worth mentioning, too, that this book has more soul in it than you might initially expect – toward the beginning, she talks about her familial roots spread throughout the world, about the roots she’s put down in different places around the globe, and how her different experiences with each have shaped her sense of self and style. Jungalow is already a wonderful spread of colorful images, but knowing that the author herself has a stake in a lot of the cultures she showcases in its photos takes her work to the next level.


If you’re interested in checking out Jungalow to add some wild ideas into your decorating, it’s available as an ebook on Hoopla with immediate check-out or as a physical book at Charles City Public Library – call us at 641-257-6319 or stop by to see our copy today!