how to style a bookcase

Welcome to All in the Detail... I am so glad you are here!

When styling a bookcase, you want to 'merchandise it', just like you would see a display in a store except remember, this is your house, so this is a much smaller scale.

To add interest and style to your bookcase, use ‘mixed media’. What do I mean by that? You want to merge several different and unique elements within your bookcase shelves including wood, iron, glass, and of course, books.

You want to be sure to add a color into the book case. For example, if your room has blues, be sure that about one third of the pieces in your bookcase has some kind of blue.

You also want to look at your bookcase as a small vignette, meaning each shelf needs to be individual and you want to create foundations to build on. Some items may be able to stand on their own but sometimes you may be able to use books as platforms for different ways to showcase different pieces.

You have to think about how the bookcase is being used.

Is the bookcase being used as a room divider?
If so, you want to be sure that you can see through the bookcase and that all items on the bookcase will be pretty on all sides because they will be viewed from all sides.

Is the bookcase against a wall?
If so, then it should be a focal point and you should have fun with it. Use larger items, use mixed media, make the bookcase items really stand out.

Is the bookcase going to be used in the room to hide things?
If so, you have to think about that when you are styling. Do you have files, pencils, crayons, movies, etc that are going to be hidden in the bookcase?

These points are a great beginning to styling any bookcase.

And remember, everything is more pleasing to the eye if they are grouped in odd numbers, 3… 5… 7… etc.

Now, here are three good hints to help in styling your bookcase:

1. Less is More.
Bookshelves definitely start to look cluttered when there is too much going on. Avoid jam-packing the thing to the brim and purge unnecessary items. Ask yourself, "Do I really need this book I've been meaning to read for 3 years?'

2. Consider A Different Bookshelf.
I've been in that position where we had a home full of hand-me-downs and they honestly just didn't fit the space properly. Before you say, "But I don't have the money to buy something new!" Wait! If that's the case, don't stress about it. If you are able to sell what you currently own and buy a new or used bookshelf that fits your home and needs better, go for it!

3. Shop Your Home.
You'd be surprised what can make a bookshelf finally "work". Look around your home for decor items that can be pulled together to create a functional bookshelf that is also your kind of style.