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Organising Shelves and Bookcases

Most of us have a bookcase or a shelf in our home be it in the living area, kitchen, study or office. Aside from their obvious practical uses clever organising of shelves can not only add interest and colour to a room they can also become a focal point in their own right.

The options are many and varied. However here are a few guidelines and ideas to help you create a feature in your home.

Creative Use Of Colour

Create blocks of colour by grouping simliar items together in this way you can emphasise an accent colour you may already be working with (eg. Cushions, lamps, flowers). If you are working with a few colours that are already present in your wall, sofas, curtains again this grouping of colour will accentuate this without drawing your eyes too much (see the picture below and how the book are grouped to subtely define the deep pinks and greens in the room as seen in the cushions and curtains).

bookcase-2.jpg    contemporary-white-shelving.jpg

Think about contrasting your existing wall colour with the colour of the shelves themselves eg. a dark shelf / bookcase on a lighter wall or vice versa. Alternatively paint the wall of the enclosed units a contrasting colour or a few shades darker than the wall colour for a more subtle look.

 bookcase-inside-painted-green.png      grey-painted-inside-of-bookcase.jpg

Another great design tip is to paper inside the enclosed shelves to create a dramatic effect and give a designer feel to the room very easily and cost effectively.


wallpaper-inside-shelving.jpg    pink-wallpaper-inside-shelves.jpg

Choosing Objects

Bookshelves are simply not just for books!

Ok, Perhaps if  it is a library or study then of course books will be the main feature but think about using interesting objects as bookends such as vases or lanterns or figuries.

 office-shelving.jpg     family-room-shelving.jpg

You can mix up shapes and heights just ensure you create a balanced effect. Putting objects off-centre makes the appearance more interesting just keep items balanced. The easiest way to do this is place items inside an imaginary triangle.

Another interesting idea is to use your shelves or bookcase as a photo gallery or to display artwork.

photo-gallery-shelving.jpg        baskets-for-storage-on-shelves.jpg  

Contemporary Versus Traditional

The most simple definition would be traditional bookcases are crammed full of books whereas contemporary shelving is more open where the less is more principal is followed.

However, there is no rule to say your cant mix things up a bit. In a traditional room paint the wood an interesting colour. Or if going for a contemporary look you can still store book but think of stacking them horizontally not vertically.

dark-feature-bookcase.jpg  horizonr.jpg

The most important thing is to be adventurous. A bookcase or shelf can be changed around very easily at any time. It only takes a few accessories to create a fabulous feature so why not try taking something ordinary and making it extra-ordinary!

Take a look at our accessories section where there are lots of items that can be used as bookends or feature objects (click on the link below for more details).

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