Key Points to a Stylish Bookcase

Do you ever wonder how those bookcases in magazines look so stylish and perfectly organized? Well here is our guide to creating a stylish bookcase in any space.

Step 1: To paint or not to paint?

Here you can see our before and after of how painting a bookcase can really transform the overall appearance of the room. We also added wallpaper to the back of the shelves to add another design element. This creates a contrast between the painted shelves and allows the accessories to make a statement.






Step 2: All about the books

Old books, new books, small books, big books... Books are a great way to fill up the space. Stacking books vertically and horizontally throughout the shelves creates movement and allows your eyes to flow from shelf to shelf. Our image below shows how we incorporated old books to really showcase this space.



Step 3: Mixing Materials

Whether you use a combination of wood, glass, metals or ceramics, all elements combined make for a stunning bookcase. Spacing each element throughout the bookcases creates a unique statement for each shelf. We recommend using a combination of various elements.  Remember to look at the entire space and insure that the same type of elements are not next to or above and below each other.  See our example below of the unique items and ways we mixed materials. 



Step 4: Balance is key

The key to a good balance is layering elements, using various heights, mixing materials and adding the last final touch of greenery. In our photo below, the bookshelves were custom built to showcase the portrait. The challenge was to balance on the other side.  We incorporated the following elements to achieve this.  

  • Staggering books both vertically and horizontally
  • Mixing ceramics, woods and metals throughout
  • Few touches of greenery 

The paint in the back of the bookshelves adds the final element, adding to the balance of the shelves.


Step 5: Green is Good

 Add a touch of greenery or florals to the  shelves. In the first image, you will see that we used a small planted orchid in a soft white ceramic vase.  In the bottom image, we incorporated a light teal ceramic planter with beautiful green hydrangeas. The contrast of the various colors pops against the painted white bookshelves. You can also use real flowers for those of you who have a green thumb!