If you follow me on instagram (@anoblehome) you may have noticed that I recently purchased some new bookcases for my front living room. I would love to have built in bookcases in this room one day but for now I’m enjoying styling up my new free standing bookcases. I purchased these inexpensive ones from Ikea. They also have the option to add drawers but I didn’t need that look, though its a great option too. I love how simple and clean these look. I took this photo right after I had built them and placed a few things on them quickly. They may not seem like much in this photo but once all the decor comes in, they’ll be perfect!
Since they arrived, I’ve been spending some time shopping my house (you would be surprised how much decor you can find that you already own and can move around) and online for accessories to fill them up with. These are quite wide so it takes quite a bit of decor to make them perfect. Here is what I’ve learned are essentials for bookcase styling.
Books – I mean this one is pretty obvious right?! Bookcases need books. Though I do love novels, I don’t love to display them all, I find for me it’s too busy looking. I chose to focus on larger scale books like coffee table books. I like them stacked in 2’s or 3’s with a nice accessory on top like a plant or a candle. Click here to see my post on my favourite coffee table books.
Bookends – These are great for adding a touch of decor and for allowing your books to stand up. It just creates a more interesting look when you have the books flat and upright.
Candles – I personally love a nice clean candle. I also think it adds a pretty touch to place a cloche over top of one. You can buy cloches (the one above is Ikea!) but also if you have any cake stand lids those work too! Add a pretty bottle of matches, a candle snuffer or wick cutter and it creates a pretty layered look.
Vases – these are great decor pieces especially in a larger size as the larger scale helps to fill those bigger spaces. You can also add greenery but it’s not always necessary. The compote bowl/vase above is from a local nursery but is linked here.
Storage boxes – I love decorative boxes stacked on shelves both for style and function. They are great for storage. I often keep receipts, loose change and charging cords in mine.
Large scale bowls – These are great to fill up a larger space too but they also add additional storage – a great place to drop your wallet and keys without them being visible. They are also a great way to change up your decor seasonally… fill them with lemons in summer, Christmas bulbs in winter.
A decorative wreath – I love the wreath trend and it adds a pretty feminine touch to your shelves. They can be quite expensive but I have also found some at my local home sense too. They are worth searching for.
Woven baskets – I like to fill the bottom shelf of bookcases with baskets to ground the shelf but also to add needed storage. I keep everything from cords to novels to fabric samples and even toys in mine.
Frames – Frames are a great way to bring in art and photographs into your shelves. I like to place a smaller frame in front of another larger frame for a layered look and smaller 4×6/ 5×7 frames are great for on top of a stack of books or next to a larger vase.
Plants – Every space needs a touch of nature both for texture and greenery. I prefer real if the space allows but faux is good too!
Small decorative objects – Everything from wood prayer beads draped over beads, candlesticks to small photo frames. These are great to layer in front of other pieces or place on top of books.
I am waiting on a few orders to arrive so I can finish styling mine and I’ll of course share the finished results once they’re done!