Is this the coffee table book of our dreams? Former Western Living associate editor Julia Dilworth’s new tome, West Coast North, compiles stunning work from 29 of our favourite designers from the Pacific Northwest into 256 inspiring pages, and while we know it’s not anywhere near Christmas, it’s still at the top of our wish list. (It also happens to be beautifully designed by former WL associate art director Naomi MacDougall, too! We’re everywhere!)

Dilworth’s years of experience immersing herself in our local design scene pays off in the thoughtful profiles and curated selection of projects here. And though we’re more than familiar with the names that appear in the book—among them, WL stalwarts like Kelly Deck, Falken Reynolds, Gaile Guevara, Project 22 Design, PlaidFox, and Leckie Studio—it’s a treat to see our design scene so lovingly synthesized. While the approaches of these architects and designers may differ (you’ll see modernism and maximalism and Craftman restorations side by side), there is a through-line here: a celebration of a sense of place and the West Coast’s undeniable beauty.

Author Julia Dilworth.

Though Dilworth began work on the book before the pandemic hit, the bulk of writing and production took place in thick of lockdown — in a way, the perfect time to do some heavy thinking about the power and importance of design.

As she writes in the book’s introduction: “Well-designed spaces are ones you want to spend time in. And like no other period in history, the COVID-19 pandemic and its work-from-home lockdowns put a focus on interiors and their effect on our quality of life, as our yards became our parks and our living rooms became our art galleries. While other industries closed or slowed due to the new virus, design studios were run off their feet with inquiries to renovate, design, and decorate.”

Though life is returning to a sense of normal, the lessons we learned in that time and the appreciation we all gained for home won’t soon be forgotten. With West Coast North on our shelves, we have an opportunity to celebrate the people and studios that are uplifting our interior spaces and honouring this corner of the world we call home in the process.

West Coast North by Julia Dilworth, $50
Coming October 18, 2002
Available for pre-order directly from Figure 1 Publishing or at your local bookseller.