Few things can tell you more about somebody’s personality than a list of their all-time favorite reads. Okay, maybe a hidden playlist of Dolly Parton’s hits has the potential to be slightly more revealing but regardless, book lists are definitely up there. From various philosophy books to instructional guides on Chinese calligraphy and the biography of Tina Fey, take a peek at what some iconic industrial designers including Karim Rashid, Norman Foster, Jonathan Adler, Michael Graves, and others keep nearby on their bookshelf with this great list from Designers and Books.

Designers and Books


From Vitruvius to William Morris to Frank Lloyd Wright to Edith Wharton to Le Corbusier to Paul Rand—there has always been a particularly special and robust relationship between designers and books: reading them, writing them, designing them, collecting them, learning from them, and being inspired by them. We celebrate that relationship.
-Designers and Books

Nobody can deny that losing yourself in the pages of a great book is one of the best ways to pass the time—be it the Far Side Anthology or A Tale of Two Cities. Launched in 2011 with 55 book lists and 678 books, Designers and Books aims to be an advocate for books as an important source of inspiration for creativity, innovation, and invention. Their method consists of publishing lists that members of the international design community have compiled that have shaped their values, worldview, and ideas about design and the world-at-large. Designers from such industries as architecture, fashion, graphic design, interactive design, interior design, urban design, and others are all apart of this unique information-sharing community:

Inga Sempé

Screen Shot 2013-10-14 at 1.18.20 PM

Screen Shot 2013-10-14 at 1.18.33 PM

Screen Shot 2013-10-14 at 1.18.40 PM

Karim Rashid

Screen Shot 2013-10-14 at 1.23.28 PM
Screen Shot 2013-10-14 at 1.23.19 PM
Screen Shot 2013-10-14 at 1.23.13 PM

Tim Brown

Screen Shot 2013-10-14 at 1.30.22 PM
Screen Shot 2013-10-14 at 1.30.33 PM
Screen Shot 2013-10-14 at 1.30.45 PM

With a unique ‘Save to My Reading List’ feature, the site offers a great way to compile your queue for your next marathon-reading session with reads recommended by your favorite designer. Our favorite part about the site is the short descriptions from the designers themselves—almost like your own filtered Amazon customer reviews in a way.

Check it out over at Designers and Books.

(Images via Designers and Books)


Simon is a Brooklyn-based industrial designer and Managing Editor of EVD Media. When he finds the time to design, his focus is on helping startups develop branding and design solutions to realize their product design vision. In addition to his work at Nike and various other clients, he is the main reason anything gets done at EvD Media. He once wrestled an Alaskan alligator buzzard to the ground with his bare hands… to rescue Josh.