Shelves were born to serve. They help us organize our lives, asking for little in return (especially floor space). Boasting more storage per-square foot than most other furniture, tall bookcases are a smart, high-return investment. They also make a strong focal point and keep our favorite things in open view without looking cluttered.
A bookcase, in fact, becomes a picture frame around our things (making it important to choose one that looks good)! Its many shelves act like a stage set, inviting us to beautifully display our things, hone our decorator skills and have fun while we’re at it. (Imagine being able to change things around in your home without moving a stick of furniture or repainting the wall!)
Here are 7 ways to turn furniture bookcases in your home into an appealing focal point…
- Display more than books. Unless you need every inch for your volumes, display other interesting objects, such as leather-wrapped, woven or cloth bins, plates, picture frame, artwork, sculpture or candles.
- Leave spaces between objects. Varying the height of objects inside a bookshelf is more interesting than displaying everything at one height.
- Layer objects to create a look of depth. Behind low objects, lean a picture frame, plate or book (faced forward) against the back of the bookcase behind them. In front of shallow objects, place a low picture frame, sculpture or votive candles.
- Collect interesting bookends. If you travel, bookends are a perfect souvenir to bring back; each pair will remind you of an interesting place.
- Use objects as bookends. A trio of small decorative boxes, a small statue or other weighty item on one or both ends of a stack of books will keep them in place.
- Create clusters of books rather than lining them up. Place a stack of 3-5 big books on end. Against one or both sides, place another stack of 3-5 smaller books on their backside (spine facing out, cover facing up), like a bookend; place an interesting object on top.
- Display hardcover books without their paper jacket. It creates an old-world library look. Save the paper jacket, if you like, by storing it inside the book.