A perfect pick for adding storage and style to your surroundings, a bookcase is a must-have piece of furniture for the home. Books and collectibles on display add warmth and personality to your living space. A bookcase gives your guests a glimpse of what you’re passionate about and will elevate your mood every time you look at it.
But bookcases can easily go from beautiful to too busy if you aren’t careful. The key is to maximize the storage capabilities while avoiding messy clutter. Styling a bookcase is an art, but it’s a pursuit that’s easily mastered. These seven tips are sure to help you arrange the items on your bookshelves to be aesthetically pleasing and make your bookcase an essential part of your home decor:
1. Work from big items to small items. Place your largest item on the shelf first, whether it’s a framed photo or a large vase. Set it on the far right, left, or centered (play around with what looks best). Arrange medium-sized books next to it, stacked or lined up vertically. If you have room, set your smallest knick knacks next to the big piece or anywhere that is visually pleasing.
2. Think in layers. Balance between books and collectibles can be easily achieved by layering them. Place small items in the front and set large items against the back of the shelves. Different heights and textures add to the aesthetic appeal.
3. Group similar items together. Grouping similar items together has a better impact than spacing them out. If you’ve got three pieces of matching pottery, keep them on the same shelf for the best look.
4. Play around with your book display. Arrange them by color. Display them horizontally and vertically. Experiment with stacking them and placing small items on top of them. If your books are arranged the same way on each shelf, your bookcase may look dull.
5. Ordinary items stored in glass jars creates amazing art. Depending on the theme of your decor, you may be able to stylishly store your trinkets. Play around with seashells you collected on your family’s last trip to the beach or some pretty rocks.
6. Remember the magic numbers three and five. Groupings of three and five tend to be more visually appealing.
7. Consider the space in front of and around your bookcase. Hang a mirror or a framed piece of art on the front of the shelves for a layered look. Place a small area rug, a pair of occasional chairs and ottoman furniture next to it to create a peaceful reading area. There’s no rule that bookcase styling is limited to the shelves.
When you’re finished styling your bookcase, step back and re-assess. There are always little tweaks to be made, and it’s better to see it as a whole than to try and make edits before you’re finished. Eventually, you’ll have a beautifully styled bookcase that looks fabulous in your home.