How to Decorate a Bookcase Like a Pro!

How to Decorate a Bookcase Like a Pro!

A well styled bookshelf can really elevate an entire space and make it look cohesive. If you are like me, you may be torn between aesthetics and practicality when selecting décor. That is one subject where Boy Jamie and I agree to disagree. Sometimes things just need to look pretty! No practicality involved. When styling bookshelves, there should always be a nice balance between beauty and benefit.

                                   bookshelf 4

Things to include on the shelf:

Favorite books, Accent Pieces, Personal Pictures, Accent Colors, Decorative/Interesting Objects, and Greenery

Style tip! Group in Odd Numbers

    bookshelf 2

Placing objects in groups of three creates visual tension. Despite the odd number, the grouping will look and feel more balanced. Even numbers create symmetry, but odd numbers create interest. Three seems to be the magic number, but 5, 7, or even 9 for  large groupings work nicely as well.

bookshelf 5

Layer, Layer, Layer

  bookshelf 3

  Displays should never be one-dimensional, so be sure to layer a few items in front of each other. Layering adds depth to your shelves. One of the easiest ways to layer is to place objects (vases, small plants, small décor) in front of an art print or photo. Different heights and textures also add to the appeal. Start with the bigger accessories first and then fill in the gaps!

Stack Objects

One thing you can do to add appeal to a stack of books is to put a decorative object on top. Think of using decorative objects to break up the monotony. The decorative object on top of the stack draws the eye and makes the arrangement more interesting.


You can and should use fun objects as bookends! If you have books standing upright on a shelf, you can use an object or a uniquely shaped vase instead of just a simple bookend.

These succulents are a great way to incorporate greenery into your bookshelf decor. You can buy similar ones here:

Bookshelf styling can be an easy extension of your interests and personality, and there are no rules or limits to how you customize yours!

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Shiplap VS. Board and Batten

What’s old is new again!

Wood paneling is back, in the form of shiplap, and hopefully here to stay. I say wood paneling but I’m not talking about the knotty pine in your grandparent’s den. If you’ve watched HGTV recently, specifically a little show called FIXER UPPER , you know what I’m talking about. The one who can do no wrong, Joanna Gaines, is all about shiplap (WWJGD= What Would Joanna Gaines Do?).


“Shiplap was installed throughout the house, along with hardwood floors for clean lines and a fresh canvas to build on.” -JG

Shiplap, usually laid horizontally, tends to make the most of cottage-inspired/farmhouse homes in need of the texture and the warmth of natural material. This feature is prominent in farmhouse decor, rustic, coastal, and many other design styles. There are so many ways to incorporate shiplap into your home projects. Whether you use weathered natural wood or want a more clean painted look, a wood covered wall makes any room feel warmer.



Another textural favorite is good ol’ Board and Batten. Many people use B&B to add  architectural detail and texture to a space. A relatively easy way to achieve the symmetry of adding wall panels is with board and batten. Board and batten can  be used on a large accent wall to help the ceiling look taller by drawing attention to the vertical boards. Many people use this technique for wainscoting as well. 

The great thing about both of these trends is they provide a touch of texture and warmth to a home. Whether you prefer a country chic or modern finished home, these accents may be what you’re looking for, let’s compare!


shiplap board and batten


Dining Room:

shiplap board dining



ship lap fireplace

In my opinion, shiplap is a more casual, informal option while B&B has as more formal classic look.  With their neutral look and timeless texture, these two trends can be used just about anywhere.


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