You are here


Part memoir, part decorating book, this is the story of how acclaimed interior designer Thom Filicia renovated a fixer-upper in the Finger Lakes and turned it into a modern American home.

Thom Filicia wasn't looking for another escape from his busy city life. But when visiting beautiful Skaneateles Lake, New York, a place he had discovered growing up, he fell madly in love with a fixer-upper. But there was catch—it needed structural repairs, better flow from room to room, and a serious style update.  Thom’s goal was to respect the home’s design history and its surrounding on New York’s Finger Lakes, while creating a retreat that would feel comfortable, livable, and modern—a new American classic. 18 months and one careful, respectful, and impassioned renovation later, it has become a house that he calls home—one that profoundly speaks to his happy memories of growing up in Central New York and his sophisticated, yet approachable American aesthetic.

American Beauty: Renovating and Decorating a Beloved Retreat (Clarkson Potter; November 13, 2012) is the story of this renovation, from the moment Thom first spotted the house through the trees until the home was fully decorated. Detail-rich photographs of the rooms, during and after renovation, reveal how he preserved original architectural elements or thoughtfully chose new ones, and how he added accents such as fabrics and art to make the house feel like a home.

From the sunroom with raw log walls to the peaceful and airy master bedroom to the jewel-box-like powder room, each space is a testament to comfort, blending the best of American tradition with a clean, modern approach. Thom also offers practical advice about how to determine whether to give into the temptation of a fixer-upper, how to preserve a home’s history, and how to mix design aesthetics.

With more than 300 stunning photographs and Thom’s thoughtful retelling of his experience,  American Beauty is both a deeply felt story of true house love and a decorating book brimming with inspiration.



From his start at renowned design firms, included Parish-Hadley, THOM FILICIA launched his acclaimed enterprise, Thom Filicia Inc., and has emerged as one of today’s most influential and respected interior designers. His clients have ranged from Tina Fey, Delta Air Lines, Jennifer Lopez, and Peter Jennings to those in the worlds of finance, sports, and hospitality. Gaining fame on the Emmy-winning Queer Eye, Style Network, and HGTV, he is a bestselling author and has been praised as a “Top 100 Designer” by House Beautiful and an “A-List” designer by Elle Décor. He is also the driving force behind the Thom Filicia Home Collection. For more information, visit