Bookcases: Style and Function!

I had a request recently for some visual love of bookcases. Yes, bookcases hold books (duh). But they are also a place to display memories, photos and other treasures.

My older two boys made pet rocks in daycare one year when they were two. I still have them tucked in a special spot on one of my bookcases.

One of the challenges is how to style a bookcase. Do you line all the books up so that everything is totally linear and symmetrical? Perhaps. If you were arranging books in a library that were all the same size and shape a uniform look would work well. Sort of (can you tell I’m not the biggest fan?).

You can mix things up. Stack some books vertically, stack some horizontally.


Give your books space to breathe – don’t cram the bookcase so full that it is bursting at the seams. This will visually open up your space.


Incorporate special vases, plates and other decorative objects into your display. I was recently at my sister’s house helping with her bookcases and I started by raiding her buffet to incorporate some of her china on her bookshelf.


Create visual interest in your items on display but also in the bookcase itself – grasscloth wallpaper is one example.


Or paint the back …


Sometimes the location of the bookcase dictates some of the form and function.




Get creative with your standard Ikea bookcases. Add crown, add a base … amp up the architectural features – here is an example of a souped up “Billy” bookcase from Ikea:


What do your bookcases look like? What are your favourite tricks to style your bookcases?


About Sarah

Sarah is constantly ReDesigning things. From ReDesigning spaces for others or ReDesigning herself from corporate operations whiz into interior decorator and blogger – it’s all about ReDesign.

Posted on November 14, 2011, in Blog Posts and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Love the nook with Abbey Road print!

  2. We are kindred spirits when it comes to bookcases! I have created a site called The BookCase Project.
    I started the site in August, 2011 and the original intent was to be an archival site to post photos of bookcases. Since that time I have been posting published articles from across the globe on how technology is affecting hardback books, publishing houses, and bookshops. Also, I post book reviews. Please see my site, click “Like” and post these photos in the photo folder. Thanks

  3. White bookcase with a blue back is an interesting look. I like it!

  4. I struggle with bookcases, I can’t seem to keep them uncluttered!

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