Bookshelves, both freestanding and built-ins, can be so much more than merely a shelf.for.books. Consider transforming yours from functional into fabulous with the following:
1. Books- Pick those the mean the most to you from all categories (hardcover, paperback, vintage, coffee table, etc.) and, on each shelf, stack them- some from the left, others to the right, some in the center. The goal is for an unexpected yet balanced presentation.*
2. Photos- Framed photos help make your bookshelf personalized. I recommend simple sterling frames in all different sizes.
3. Baskets- For households with young children, baskets are the perfect way to populate the lower shelves that are within reach of small, curious hands. Even without kids, they add texture and break up the monotony that can result from too much of the same thing.
4. Objects- Cool objects add the finishing touches: candles, vases, rock geodes, art, greenery, bowls, and sculpture are among the items I utilized for my client’s bookshelf (pictured).** Place as bookends, atop a stack, or (for very special pieces) stand alone.
5. Light- Installing lighting into a built-in (with the help of an electrician) adds the piece de resistance. I recommend any of the Edison bulb pendants from Restoration Hardware.
*I’m not gonna lie- this is much harder than it looks. Practice stacking on a few shelves, step back and examine. If you don’t get it on the first few times, keep playing.
**Again, proper presentation takes practice. Bring an editing eye and when it doubt, take away!