How to Style A Bookcase

Bookshelves can make for a stunning focal-point or they can look like a cluttered mess if you just randomly throw things in them. Ditch the disarray, and create a functional and streamlined display with these tips.

1.    Mix up the book placement. 

No bookshelf is complete without books, but keep it interesting by mixing up your arrangement. Flip the spines in. Try a mix of vertical and horizontal arrangements. Don’t just go for any books—this isn’t the place for worn paperbacks.

Design by Maison de Pax

2.    Try arranging your books by color.

This might be a bit controversial for bookworms, but if you don’t have thousands of books it should still be relatively easy to find your book of choice.

Design by Amber Interiors + Cupcakes & Cashmere

3.   Use decorative objects.

Think sculptural. Try a beautiful bowl or vase. Height from vases can work to your advantage, and trays make for beautiful space fillers.

Our basement guest bedroom. Design by Pretty Domesticated.
Design by Amber Interiors

4.    Bring in nature.

Nothing livens up a room or bookcase like something actually living (or a well-executed fake). Plants are an obvious go-to, but objects made from natural materials like wood also have an organic feel.

From our basement project. Design by Pretty Domesticated.
Design by Style Curator

5.   Layer in artwork.

It is not just for walls! Large pieces can anchor a shelf, and smaller frames can go on a stack of books or in a tray. In this case, family photos count as art too!

Design by Studio McGee

Bonus tip: Vary the height and style of  your decor. Don’t be afraid of blank spaces. We find the rule of threes applies, but we often like to mix in groupings of two, if space is tight and to avoid a grid appearance.

Follow these tips to create a stunning focal point with a freshly styled bookcase! 

Like what you see? Give us some love on Pinterest @ktmsullivan!

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