Joanna Thornhill Instastyle review

Instastyle by Joanna Thornhill: book review

Instastyle by Joanna Thornhill covers creative styling tips for turning a temporary home (rental or short-term buy) into a budget-friendly space you’ll love.

It’s full of detailed projects, with easy-to-enact instructions. Because of this, none of the creative projects are too time or money-consuming.

*This post contains affiliate links. I was given a review copy of this book, with no obligation.

Who is Joanna Thornhill?

As well as being a writer, Joanna Thornhill is a freelance interior stylist.

She styles for various commercial clients and magazines, including Good Homes, Dulux and TK Maxx/Homesense.

Instastyle for your Living Space is her first book. It was released a few years ago, with the title Home for Now: making your rented flat or first home beautiful, and was inspired by Joanna’s own experience of renting. It was re-released in 2018 under this new Instastyle title.

What’s in Instastyle by Joanna Thornhill?

The book contains images and tips from 15 real interiors. Each chapter covers a different area of the home.

The premise of Instastyle is that readers don’t have bags of money to style up their home, but might relish rolling their sleeves up and getting stuck into a creative project. Maybe repurposing some of the treasures they’ve got already?

The book promises quick styling fixes and they really do keep coming.

page spread from Instastyle by Joanna Thornhill showing how to use chairs as space saving storage

What’s the Joanna Thornhill signature instastyle?

Pretty eclectic, and full of personality.

The biggest takeaway from this book is that you should embrace eclectic in all its glory. This is because you can add to your interior as and when budget permits, and things don’t have to be too matchy.

What can interiors addicts learn from the book?

Instastyle is not just an interiors eye candy, coffee table book. You’ll find lots of practical tips inside. It’s all about the updates that can make your space feel unique.

The projects are heavy on imaginative touches, and light on budget. This is perfect if you’re nervous about investing too much money in your space. Or indeed if you’re a creative novice, and want to experiment without huge outlay for materials.

Each project comes with the promise that you need no specialist tools, sewing talent or in-depth DIY skills.

The quick techniques are easy to use at any stage in your home. Also they shouldn’t infringe any rental contracts, as they don’t involve major alterations.

Step-by-step guide for interiors projects

I loved the step-by-step guides for the various creative projects.

There’s a real ingenuity to plenty of them.

Here’s one easy fix as an example – place a mirror inside the recess of an unused fireplace, instead of above it, to cast light around the room.

I particularly liked the results from the furniture that was spray-painted through lace. This created a upmarket, original piece of furniture.

What if you can’t hang pictures? Thornhill shows you that’s no problem, with tips on how to hang art, postcards and paper treasures without using a hammer.

You’ll also find out how to use styling props to add life to a space. As a result, you’ll never throw out an old wooden crate or a champagne cork again!

Page spread from Instastyle showing vintage frames on dark navy walls

Need a copy now?

If you’re living in a rental property or a ‘home for now’ and want to style up your space without a huge investment, this is a great choice for valuable tips.

Instastyle for your Living Space by Joanna Thornhill (CICO books).

Like homes and interiors books?

Check out my review of Paloma Contreras’ recent book, Dream Design Live.