StyleGuide: Curating a Book Shelf

In Uncategorized on May 5, 2009 at 7:17 pm
Image via Coco Kelley. Stylist Lili Diallo
Image: Unknown Credit to Original Photographer
Image unkown. Tracy Garret’s Apartment
Image via Domino. Credit to Original Photographer

One of the harder tasks as a designer is to curate a beautiful bookshelf. There is a fine line between a cluttered bookshelf and a decorated bookshelf. There needs to be the right mix of books and decorative items. There also needs to be the right balance of heavy objects and airy objects. Some tips for curating a bookshelf and some really inspiring photos.

TIP 1 – The basic rule is the rule of thirds, one third books, one third accessories, and one third empty space.

TIP 2 – Work from left to right on the first shelf and right to left on the next. This will help achieve balance.

TIP 3 – If you have high books on the left side of one shelf, you don’t want the same type of books and space on the next shelf.

TIP 4 – There is no reason to line up books like a library. Try lying a pile of books on their side and use them as a bookend or to lift up an accessory.

TIP 5 – When choosing accessories think color and texture. Some colors will better enhance your books or the room as a whole.Textures (horn, shagreen, shell, metals, etc) create interest. Also, break up collections and scatter them around the bookshelves.

TIP 6 – Be sure to include free space. You’ll need a place to rest the eyes. If you crowd a bookcase it’s going to look messy.

TIP 7– Take breaks. Step away from the project and return to it after some time to gather a new perspective on the space.


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