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Styling bookshelves is something that everyone experiences, some more successfully than others. To avoid falling into the latter category, how does one successfully style their books so the space looks organized, interesting and effortlessly cool? Emily Henderson's book "Styled: Secrets for Arranging Rooms, from Tabletops to Bookshelves" tackles that question (and much much more as it relates to styling and decor) and thankfully answers it in four easy steps. Here are her recommendations.
1. Control Yourself: "While your initial reaction might be to add books and other platforms to help ground a shelf collection, another (almost opposite) approach is arranging small art objects in a flat grid. It's an easy way for your eye to read each piece. It works just as well, but is best on a lower shelf where is can get full exposure," writes Henderson. The takeaway? Book shelves aren't just for books. Use the space to graphically display your collections.
2. Add Artwork: "Try hanging artwork between shelving to add dimension and break up the monotony of stacks of books. Be sure to call the artwork out; a wooden chain draped over the frame and a clip lamp both work hard to highlight the piece," Henderson adds. The takeaway? Layer artwork and objets d'art to add an interesting, visual depth to your bookshelves.
3. Add Graphic Prints: According to Henderson, "Cool typography prints with witty sayings, quotes or mantras will pique a guest's interest in your bookshelf, maybe more than a particular book might. You can go classic like, 'Keep Calm and Carry On, or you can go for something new, informal, and modest (so you won't get tired of it quickly)." The takeaway? Books can sometimes look boring. Like framed artwork, graphic prints can add an interesting twist to your display and take up much needed space if you don't have enough books to stack on the shelf.
4. Tighten Up: "Remember: A bunch of little things will look more organized if they are in a small color palette. Use each shelf to feature books and accessories in one or two colors. This classic Scandinavian collection looks neat and collected in white and wood," writes Henderson. The takeaway? If you are going to display a collection, make sure to limit the colors. It will make a much more powerful, visual impact.
Available on Amazon. Excerpted from "Styled: Secrets for Arranging Rooms, from Tabletops to Bookshelves" by Emily Henderson (Potter Style). Photographs by David Tsay. (Image 1: Designed by Scott Horne; 2: Designed by Sally Breer; 3: Designed by Project M Plus)