Oct
06

5 Tips for Styling a Basic Bookshelf

October 06, 2013

1.  It’s About the Books

I truly believe that bookshelves should be filled with books. Other items do help to make for a beautiful bookshelf, but they should be the ‘icing on the Book Cake.’ So, start with your books!

{design by Fieldstone Hill Design}

Books can be organized and displayed in a variety of beautiful ways. Try grouping your books by color, depth and/or height. Play with symmetrical displays or graduating heights. Or try an ombre color display. Either way, pack in the books!

 

Don’t have a lot of books? Another idea is to use your magazine collection. Or, scour for books via flea markets, yard sales, library sales, or help clear out your friends’ basements! I think it is worth the effort to have book-filled shelves… and a book-filled life for that matter.

2. Think Horizontally and Vertically

Once you have your books in, and looking pretty, allow for some breathing room, or gaps, between your books.  Fill in the minor/smaller gaps by using horizontal, stacked books topped with beautiful décor items. Then, fill in any major gaps with larger, vertical décor items. I recommend selecting several large items that all have a common color scheme, since the books themselves will offer a lot of visual busyness.

{design by Fieldstone Hill Design}

3. Add Lovely Fillers

Bookshelves provide the perfect backdrop for displaying favorite décor items among your book collection. Large and small vases, trays, platters, framed family photos, and framed art all make beautiful additions as you “fill in the gaps” between your books. Also, décor items that are simply there for beauty’s sake, are perfect additions as well.

This is an opportunity to display some of the lovelier things in your home, as well as display beautiful pictures of your family. So dig through your cabinets! Hunt around the house for items that have been buried behind closed doors, but are worthy of display, and add them to your bookshelf display.

4. Add Useful Fillers

Let’s face it. Sometimes storage space is at a premium. That is why I love the idea of using the extra bookshelf space between books for additional sneaky storage. My favorite tricks?

a) Stacked nesting boxes filled with family photos.

 

 b) Beautiful, matching baskets filled with…. Just about anything! This is one of my favorite ways to sneak extra storage out of a room.

 c) Adding a mini-bar or water bar on a tray. This is an artful and practical addition to a bookshelf. The water bar idea is my new favorite! It is so nice to have a display of sparkling Italian waters to offer to any of your guests.

5. Think outside of the box

This is a simple trick that truly elevates your bookshelf beauty to another level: Hang some gorgeous art onto the outside of your bookshelves! Layering in this way adds depth and texture {not to mention pretty art!} to your bookshelf design.

 

Ultimately, have fun with your bookshelves. Remember that decorating rules are meant to be broken. And always, decorate with what you LOVE! Who has time for “like?” Basic bookshelves never need to be boring!

 

For more bookshelf inspiration and design tips, I would love to have you join me over at Fieldstone Hill Design!

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