Magazines often feature nice spreads of rooms filled with books, complete with images featuring poetic faraway places, where leather tomes populate large wood-paneled shelves or spacious rooms containing stacks of books placed on the floor in an architectural column manner.
If you’re a book lover, you may have found such images inspirational, but not quite you. Books are becoming increasingly rare in people’s homes. This isn’t really a surprise when you consider the fact that a virtually endless library can be contained on a small portable device versus the shelves of heavy volumes.
The question then becomes, in a world where books are going the way of the dinosaur, what becomes of our bookshelves? The sad reality is that bookshelves have become the area that attracts all of our junk-mail, papers, and empty vases.
One idea for utilizing our bookshelves and improving their appearance without books is to fill them with nice-looking storage boxes. These can be colored and patterned, plus display a smart ceramics collection, or use pictures to fill voids. Be mindful, however, that open shelves reveal everything, so you’ll need to take more care in styling than you would a closet or a closed cabinet.
Still, too often, there exists no substitute for a genuine book that can be physically held. Books have the effect of giving a room warmth and character. An authentic collection serves to highlight your interests and passions.
For some, books can be like photographs in the way that they catalog in our memories as a moment in time, a story, or a place. When viewed in this way, as a postcard from a figurative literary trip, books hold a special place that electronic devices cannot match. Here’s how you can revive your bookshelves and accentuate beyond the books.
- After removing everything from your shelves, sort the books by size and subject matter. Any ripped dust jackets should be removed and thrown out.
- Add visual interest to the shelves by lining books up on the shelves, stacking them both horizontally and vertically.
- Unused spaces can be concealed with attractive boxes. By allowing you to neatly store anything, colored boxes nicely break up the rows of books.
- Accentuate the space by adding ceramics and other objects for visual interest. You can keep a bookshelf from looking too staged by using photographs leaning against a stack of books, which also personalizes it.
There are literally (no pun intended) thousands of different ways to utilize your book collection around the home. If you don’t currently own a book collection, head out to local thrift stores and garage sales and look for antique and aged books, if you’re seeking a rustic look. If you’re trying to use your books to create architectural features in your home, be sure to seek out sturdy and solid books that meet the criteria of your project.
When in doubt, be sure to turn to the internet or to home improvement magazines for ideas on how to best use your book collection to compliment your home’s décor.
About the Author
My name is Barry and I enjoy writing about home improvement topics, such as where to go for Phoenix window replacement, ways to use everyday items to spruce up your decor, and luxury features that you could add to your home.