Married Monday | 5 Ways to Decorate a Bookshelf



I’m a believer in stuff. I believe that your home should be a reflection of you…and the things inside of it should tell your story. My story is simply that I live for knick-knacks (I must’ve inherited that gene from my great-granny, SHE was THE knick-knack QUEEN!) When I’m out on one of my antique shopping trips (that I love so much!) and I find a treasure that I love, though I’m not sure I can find a place for in our house…I simply put it on a bookshelf!

I’m not a decorator by ANY means, and I’m pretty sure that my house has broken MANY decorating & design rules, however I can’t argue when something just WORKS for me & our home.  Plus, I’m not setting out to be groundbreaking in the home decorating field, or be published in a magazine…I just simply enjoy decorating to fit my style and budget.

So I thought that today I’d give y’all a few tips about styling bookshelves and how I’ve done it!  In our house, we have 4 bookshelves–one in our living room, a built-in bookshelf in our den, in our bedroom, and inside my office.  Even four bookshelves isn’t barely enough for my love affair with old books & knick-knacky items, but we make it work! And here’s how:

1. Start with a clean slate! Whenever I get in the mood to rearrange our bookshelves (which is often! Believe me!) I always take EVERYTHING off the bookshelf to start out.  This way it’ll give me a nice clean slate when it comes to decorating, & who doesn’t love that?! Once everything is off of each bookcase, I can “shop” my house and the other knick-knacks from around the house and switch things out every so often.  This way I won’t get tired of seeing the same thing over and over again on one particular bookcase.

2. Combine different textures!  Spice up those shelves by adding different textures! I’ve employed many different textures within the shelves like glass, metal, galvanized tin, fabric, wood, and natural items.  Mixing textures ensures a very polished and finished-off designer look (even if you’re not a designer/decorator at all! Way to fool ’em girlfriend!) 2016-08-29_0007

3. Decorate in LAYERS! Making sure to decorate bookshelves by using LAYERS! Stack books and then set a piece on top.  Place a framed picture or artwork in the back of a shelf, and then a bowl or dish in front of it.  Layering adds dimension & makes for an interesting eye-catching design.  2016-08-29_0006

4. Use things that you LOVE! I usually find all of my bookshelf items while out antique shopping (treasure hunting, as I like to call it!) If I’m out and about and see something that I absolutely LOVE, I end up just buying it (because I can’t live without it! Duh!) and then I make a place for it on one of the bookshelves.  I’ve also been known to find little things while on vacation to bring back home specifically for a bookshelf (on our honeymoon alone, I bought a conch shell, a couple books about the Dominican Republic, and a miniature boat from a local vendor to bring back to put on a shelf!) Using family heirlooms is a nice way to honor families as well.  I have a couple of my Great-Granny’s figurines that she collected and loved and I’ve made a home for them on our shelves. I’ve also dried out a bouquet from our wedding and I have it sitting on one of our bookshelves. Putting to use things that get used everyday is a great way to incorporate a bookshelf into your daily routine as well.  I have my jewelry box and Phillip’s watch box on our bedroom bookshelf, and a chalkboard/message center where we keep our mail everyday in our built-in bookshelf in our den.  Old cameras and film cases fill up the shelves of my office bookshelf, and baskets of Client gifts and photo equipment make access to those easier. 2016-08-29_00022016-08-29_00032016-08-29_0001 2016-08-29_0008

5. Use books, but in a different way! Of course, a bookshelf just NEEDS books on it! It’s sort of like a rite of passage for a bookshelf, don’t you think? Instead of having a bookshelf with a ton of different colors going on (which is bonus tip #6…stick to a color scheme or neutral tones on your bookshelf!) which can look very cluttered, just simply turn the books around and show off the pages of the books…especially if the books are vintage and worn looking…even better! Joanna Gaines ( hero!) would tell you to cover the books in kraft paper or scrapbook paper & then write the titles on the spine…but really, who has time for all that? (Not me.) Also think about stacking books horizontally and placing something on top of the stack (see! Then you’d be layering as well! You’re on fire!) Magazines, especially those nice thick magazines (hello Restoration Hardware & Vogue!) can be utilized as well on your bookshelf.  I’ve stacked lots of The Knot Carolinas on my office bookshelf since I give those mags to any Bride that I meet AND…I’m also published in it as well!! (Ok, it’s a teeny-tiny picture, but it still counts!) 2016-08-29_0005 2016-08-29_0004 Just remember that these are just SOME tips and there’s definitely no rules for decorating something that YOU will love and enjoy! As long as you’re having fun and showing off all of your most loved treasures…it’ll be PERFECT! Happy Monday y’all & happy decorating! XO!

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