An escape into worlds otherwise unknown, bristling with characters that come to feel like friends (or foes) of your own, books can add a sense of value to your life that simply can’t be measured. And we’d hazard a guess that even all the Kindle converts out there still have a few relics of the paperback’s glory days tucked away somewhere… a great book really can be impossible to let go of.
Whether you’re still in the process of culling your library, or never quite took to the Kindle craze in the first place, there’s no need to feel burdened by a book addiction any longer. Books have untapped potential when it comes to decorating, and might just be the happy ending your home has been waiting for.
Forget alphabetising, a large enough book collection is begging to be arranged by colour. It’s easy, fun, and like art, highly effective at making a big design statement. Surround blocks of pink, yellow or blue with blocks of black or neutral coloured spines to make them pop, or order your books in a rainbow for a more whimsical look – perfect for kids’ rooms.
Back to front.
Not exactly practical if you still want to access your books, but great if you were planning on throwing them away, never to be read again. Slot them on your shelves with the spines facing in for an interesting neutral-coloured effect that’s rich with texture. Try this if you’re not one for too much colour, but enjoy a subdued and textured space with a dash of creativity.
Lay them flat.
We’re programmed to store books in neat rows, just like the library would. But little-used books don’t need to be treated with the same orderly mindset. Experiment with a mix of stacked books and rows of books, interspersed with decorative objects and small plants like succulents. It’ll prevent your bookcase from looking like a slab, and encourage your eye to move from one point of interest to the next.
Stack them high.
The best vignettes display objects at varying heights, and a stack of books can be a quick fix when you need to elevate one or two decorations that might otherwise get lost among larger pieces. An interesting piece of coral or geode are great examples of what to pop on a pile of books. We also love using books to arrange clusters of plants. Try using a sturdy stack to hold smaller plants aloft, while giving larger plants more room to grow.
Complete your coffee table.
The books on your coffee table are an opportunity to let your personality shine. Whether it’s art and design, travel, food or interiors, choose two or three beautiful hardcover tomes that give guests a glimpse into your hobbies and interests. A few books paired with a plant or fresh flowers is plenty for a minimalist look. For a more abundant coffee table vignette, you can’t go wrong with a short stack of books alongside a tray holding a group of interesting objects.
Store them somewhere unexpected.
Think anywhere but the bookshelf! Stack them inside a disused brick fireplace, or underneath a side table. Arrange them in baskets, rustic crates or a vintage suitcase propped open. Look for structural features of your home that would make a creative shelf, such as ledges in stairwells, or beneath bench seating in bay windows. Books make any space instantly more warm and welcoming, so it’s worth having a handful in every room especially once winter sets in.
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