How to Decorate Bookshelves

Don’t just fill your bookshelves with a bunch of books. Use them as an opportunity to make a great looking focal point for you room. Accessorize the space, arrange your books, and have fun with them. Decorating bookshelves in a thoughtful way that will ensure they won’t just be functional, they’ll look great too! A decorated bookcase is a great focal area in a room.

Getting Started

Start off with an empty bookshelf so you’ve got a clean slate. Depending on what kind of unit you have you might want to consider painting or wallpapering the back of it to add some interest.

Decorating Bookshelves with Books

Obviously, bookshelves are usually used for storing and displaying books. But there’s more to decorating bookshelves than just throwing books on them haphazardly.

Use both horizontal and vertical stacks of books to create some diversity in the shelving unit.

Consider sorting them by color and/or size to create a cohesive look.

If the spines of your books are damaged or unattractive consider covering them in paper or fabric to make them look cleaner and prettier.

Use a mix of hardcover, paperbacks and magazines.

Decorate Bookshelves with Accessories

Bookshelves are great for displaying all sorts of items.

Use interesting items like small statues, vases and candlesticks to add interest to displays to your bookcase. Lean the shelves against stacks of books or place them on top. An item with an interesting shape placed on top of a stack of books can create visual interest. Don’t forget the use of color or even live plants to create a nice constrast and atmosphere.

Layer several items in front of one another to create depth in your display.

Think outside the box. A small mirror can look terrific when mixed in with books and other items. There are no rules as to what you can use when decorating. Just have fun.

Fill Empty Space

Bookshelves tend to look best when they’re really full of stuff. But rather than filling them with a bunch of bitsy items that can look cluttered try adding some larger items like baskets and boxes. Not only do they look good but you can fill them with all sorts of things like remotes, manuals, and other unsightly items.

Here is a great video to help with decorating your bookcase.

The most important thing to remember when decorating bookshelves is to fill them with items that have meaning. Don’t just fill them with a bunch of impersonal items for the sake of filling them. Just like the works of literature they’re usually filled with, your bookshelves should tell a story.

Do you like this article? Here’s another great one to keep your home decorating ideas flowing:

8 Decorating Do’s and Don’ts From Top Designers