Bookshelf Styling Tips

September 26, 2018

Filling shelves can be a fun way to showcase more than just books! We’ve partnered with Lay Baby Lay to bring you these bookshelf styling tips.

Filling a bookshelf can feel very overwhelming, especially if you are still working on your book collection! Here are a few bookshelf styling tips to help you fill the shelves and make the most of the storage without feeling lost.

First, select some books. I love using books that are lighter colors and avoid ones that have dark/black spines as they tend to draw the eye too much. Totally go for it if it works with your color scheme, but it’s something to consider if you aren’t happy with the way your bookshelf looks- snap a photo (I find sometimes looking at a photo makes me see things more objectively) and see where your eye gravitates. Sometimes dark colors can take over and make it looks less happy and more bulky.

I also love including vintage books; some of these I selected because the subject material fits in well with the camping/outdoory space, and some of them are from my parents’ childhood, so they are extra fun to display. Since I don’t have a ton of books here, I placed them on the center of the shelvers, and used fun little trucks as bookends.

Displaying a book or two upright makes a fun graphic impact, and also feels like an invitation to pick it up and start reading. It’s also a great way to fill the shelves if you are lacking in reading material.

Next, I divide the bookshelf in half. On the top shelves, I usually put functional items (in this case, the nightlight and the fan) mixed in with some books, and on the bottom shelves I place items that are frequently played with, so they are within easy reach of the kiddos. Unless you are going for a rainbow color scheme (which is also super fun), try to evenly place colors. See how I don’t have all the red items together? They are broken up by other colors, so it isn’t too red-heavy in one place and feels more balanced.

It’s okay to be selective about¬† the items you choose to display; find toys you enjoy looking at, and go with it. If you have lots of smaller items, a cute bin really helps to corral them and make things look neat. Plus it makes it easy for little hands to put toys away. Another fun thing to do is to ask grandparents if they have any old toys or momentos from your childhood or theirs; a bookshelf is a great place to display those items!

Last, don’t feel like you need to fill up every inch! A little negative space and breathing room will make it feel less cluttered.