How to Style a Bookcase

It’s time for another home post. Today let’s talk about how to style a bookcase. This is actually something I love doing. It’s fun starting with a blank canvas and turning it into a masterpiece. Maybe masterpiece is a bit of an overstatement, but turning it into something you enjoy walking past and looking at is rewarding.

First we need a bookcase. I just purchased one for our townhouse, and the hunt was on for purchasing new items to go on it. I also just go around our home and find things that I think will work. That’s actually the first tip: Walk around your own house, look in cabinets, on shelves and on other pieces of furniture. You’ve probably got a lot of pieces that will work for this project.

Here are some bookcase options.



How to style a bookcase

BLUE AND WHITE POTTERY 1 || 2 || 3 Blue and white are making a comeback. Back in the 90’s these colors were really strong in decor, and they are coming back in paint, textiles and decorative objects.

DECORATIVE CHAIN – Chains made from both wood or marble are popular decorative items. They are also good for layering on books, hanging out of bowl, are beside a picture frame.

BOOKENDS – Bookends can be used in pairs with books between them or with books pushed up to the side of a shelf and one bookend.

FAUX TULIPS – This kind of faux tulips are very popular and very realistic looking. They are perfect for a vase or would also look pretty in one of the blue and white bases.

BRASS BIRDS – Small objects like birds or other animals are good for layering on top of books or small boxes.

BOWLS & FILLER – Bowls filled with natural elements, or left empty

MAGNIFYING GLASS – I thought this was really fun, and again would look great on a book or just as an accent.

FLORAL ARRANGEMENTS1 || 2 Another way to add texture and color are with florals. Depending on the look you’re going for. White is classic and elegant, but pinks, yellows, and oranges will brings a spring like feel.

WOODEN BEADS – These are another good layering object, winding beside photos, or draping in bowls.

BOOKS – Are great on bookcases. You can put them between bookends, stack them or use them as a base to hold other decorative objects. (LOUIS VUITTON, TOM FORD, DIOR, AD)

HOURGLASS – Objects like an hourglass add interest.

SMALL PLANTS – Small plants are good fillers, and bring in some color


Here’s a photo of how my new bookcase is coming along. Not a stellar quality photo, but you get the gist. I have a kind of formula I like to follow. I like to vary the number of things between shelves. On longer shelves like I have in California I use more of a 3:2:3 formula, meaning 3 on a shelf, then 2 on the next, then 3 again. For this bookshelf though, it’s slightly less wide and I have more of a 1:2 formula.

styling a bookshelf

I asked if you like this kind of posts, and the response was YES. Here are a few others you may have missed recently.
How to Style a Tiered Tray
Adding Spring Touches to Your Home

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  1. Patti
    April 13, 2022 / 5:17 am

    Lisa you are very creative. Love your new bookshelf and the way it is decorated.

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