Discover Your Design District

Tips for Styling Your Bookshelves

Bookshelves are deceptive. They seem easy to decorate. After all, you just fill them with your favorite titles and call it a day, right? Not so fast. Leaving your guests to look at crammed shelves isn't exactly an ideal design strategy. We've collected a few ways you can maximize the aesthetic potential for your literary library — or whatever you decide to store on your bookshelf.


Vary Color, Size and Orientation

Tie in the color scheme of the space by grouping books with spines in a similar hue. To create focal points, place all the small books together and all of the tall books in another spot. Switch up the way you orient the books by stacking some vertically and some horizontally. Check out Bulthaup's designs for more inspiration.

Stack Books and Top With Collections 

Use book stacks as canvases to display collections of nature finds such as seashells, starfish, coral or a jar full of sand dollars. If your style is sleeker, shop Bernadette Schaeffler's stunning collection of intricately decorated vases to grace the top of each grouping.

Alternate Books with Artwork

Even though the name implies the only purpose for this shelf is books, you can break the mold and use the shelves to share your art collection. Whether your art is in frames or sculpted, it offers guests a visual break from the spines and allows for you to show off your artistic style. Need to update your options? Browse original paintings, photography, prints, posters, signage and sculptures at Art Dallas Inc. to find the ideal piece for your space.


Arrange Your Shoes

Coveting a closet with built-ins but just don't have the budget? No need to hire a contractor. A bookshelf provides the perfect spot to showcase your shoes and accessories. No more bending down and rustling through haphazard piles. Have fun and arrange shoes by style or color for easy access. To make sure your closet space is utilized to its best potential, schedule a consultation with Front Door Fashion.

Store Your Linens

Surprisingly, bookshelves can make for unique and stunning storage spaces for your bedroom and bathroom linens. Stack towels and toiletries on the shelves for an elegant and useful display. To add a pop of color, choose fabrics from F. Schumacher for covering pillows and adding accents to sheets or towels.

Do Your Paperwork

Turn a bookshelf on its side or pull up a chair and hang a shelf low enough to serve as a desktop. This orientation offers plenty of storage space while providing a smooth surface on which to place a computer and all your office supplies. If you need a spot to hold your paper clips and various knickknacks, consider a trip to Baker Furniture to find sleek pieces that add a stylish touch to your working environment.

Next time you see a bookshelf at one of your Dallas Design District favorites, don’t bemoan trading in your paperbacks for an e-reader. Consider all of the ways you can repurpose and restyle this oldie but goodie.

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