How to Style Your Bookshelves

Bookshelves in any room add not only a homey, cozy feeling but also great texture and visual interest. 

How you arrange your bookshelves, however, is critical.  Sloppy or unorganized shelves can make the whole room look that way.  Here’s everything you need to know to do it right. 

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Work with a Color Scheme

Okay, I know what you’re thinking: books come in all sorts of colors.  That’s okay!

You can still “push” a color scheme by highlighting the colors you are most interested in.  Certain books can be placed in more conspicuous places such as at the top or end of a stack. Then add accessories that follow through with the scheme.  

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There are ways to take it to the extreme. For example, covering some or all books in paper of the desired color. 

Photo by Design Milk

Photo by Design Milk

In one project we turned the binding inward. I wouldn’t suggest that if you use you books frequently.  It will certainly be more difficult to find what you are looking for!

Give Your Bookshelves a Theme 

Accessorize your shelves with a collection that you already have or start a new collection of whatever interests you.  Lets say you collect globes, antique toys, family photos, stoneware pottery or jars full of shells and nautical prints.  I could go on! 

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Vary How Books are Arranged

Vary the look of each shelf. To accomplish this more easily consider stacking some books instead of arranging them all vertically. 

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Stop short of filling a shelf with books by adding bookend, a stack of books, or an accessory heavy enough to hold them.  Adding a small accessory on the top of a stack of books will add interest.   A larger accessory on a shelf by itself also works beautifully.  

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