DESIGN: Accessorizing Bookshelves in Three Easy Steps

We hear from most of our clients that they just don’t know what to do with their bookshelves. To start from scratch can be quite overwhelming so I am going to break it down into three easy steps to make the task manageable and fun!

1. Clear the shelves off completely. The biggest mistake I see is trying to “tweak” shelves that are already finished. People try to just “freshen them up” and it turns out to be a mess. It is a bit time consuming up front but will save time in the long run and give you a much better end result.


2. Gather all books and accessories. It is SO much easier to have more than what you need so that you can be picky. Assess what you already have. It gives a nice personal touch to have items you have collected while traveling, or objects that hold a special memory. Gather all your books and make a quick calculation to see if there are enough to complete the job. It’s no fun to run out of books mid-project. I know this from experience. Now you must be realistic with what you have versus the look you are trying to achieve. If you have gathered inspiration pictures of very sleek and minimally accessorized shelves with shiny white books and gold accessories, but all you have are stacks of paperbacks and some chachkies… you need to get shopping!


3. Place books and accessories in the shelves. Okay friends, this is what we have been training for…YOU CAN DO IT! Here’s some fool proof ideas to get you started:

  • A run of books flanked by bookends.



  • A stack of books with accessories on top.



  • A run of books pushed to one side with a decorative bowl or object to replace the bookend.



  • Artwork as a backdrop.



  • Use family heirlooms and photographs.



Now take your shoes off, get a drink, turn up the music and get to decorating! You’ll have gorgeous, professional looking shelves before you know it.









Author: Jana Erwin