Out of all the ways to style shelves out there, styling shelves with lots of books is my favorite way to do it. My favorite place to get books is Booth and Williams because they sell stacks of books with color palettes and styles in mind. Sourcing books from this outlet can get pretty expensive which is why I would recommend thrifting as many as you can!
Styling shelves with books can be hard but I have some tips to share with you that will keep your bookshelves from looking like they came from a library.
Alternate Between Vertical and Horizontal
The easiest way to make your bookshelves look interesting is to alternate between placing them vertically and horizontally. I also love doing this because you can stack a could of books on top of each other and leave a little bit of room for art or a decorative object on top. Doing this will take your shelves from ordinary to designer.
The Different Ways to Stacks Books
You can stack books horizontally and vertically but you can also stack a horizontal book on a vertical stack or a vertical book on a horizontal stack. Are you still with me? This is a great idea if you’re starting to run out of space. This can be a bit tricky because if not done right it can make your shelves look unbalanced so be careful when doing this and remember to always create a balance.
Stick to a Color Palette
Like everything else, sticking to a color palette will make your shelves look more uniform. You can stick to 3-4 different colors but I like to stay away from colors that would stick out in the color palette. Sticking to a color palette will make your bookshelf look and feel curated rather than all over the place. If you’re using different colors that go together, I like to separate them as much as I can rather than stack all of the red books together, for example. I have stacked all black books before but I ensure they are not the same tones so they don’t look like one big black blob on the shelf.
Flip the Spine
You can flip some spines towards the back so that you see the pages instead of the spine. I love doing this because it adds character to shelves. This also adds texture and can help balance out the colors.
Mix Up Sizes
Mix up book sizes, you can stack books of different sizes together rather than books that are all the same size. Doing this will make your shelves look unique and curated.
Fill Empty Space With Art
The thought of adding art to a bookshelf makes me so happy. I love adding small sculptures, vases, decorative bowls, small paintings, and small exquisite decorative objects. This makes your shelves look interesting and unique. It’s also the perfect way to display your treasures for all to see. When adding objects to shelves I like to make sure that the colors of those objects match or correlate with the book colors. This will make your shelves look a lot more uniform.
I hope these tips help you create beautiful shelves with books.
Here are some of my favorite objects to add to shelves.
Until next time!