I have books everywhere. Seriously, they’re all over my home, sneaking into every corner and seemingly breeding! For the first time ever, I have actually donated two large boxes full of novels I’ll never read again to a charity shop. Yes, it did help and made me feel like I’m actually tackling a big decluttering project which is always a good thing. However, I still have many, many books which I can’t and won’t part with. Large books on interiors and photography are a particular weakness of mine. So, I have to come up with ways to incorporate them into my home.

There’s the obvious solution: the bookshelf. What though if that bookshelf is already creaking under the sheer weight and is already packed to the brim? Time to get creative. Books should be used as an integral part of a decorating scheme. That way it will a) be less obvious just about how many books I have and b) make for some nice displays.

If you “suffer” from the same problem, why not take a look at my tips on how to decorate with books. Maybe you have some ideas too? What do you do with all your books?


Create Height

Decorating with Books Post 1

So, first up is my coffee table and my chest of drawers. When looking at the image, it becomes pretty apparent that the books are a great tool to add height to the all those small decorative items. Without the use of the books, the candles, ashtray, coral (fake) would all sit on one level and make for a fairly “flat” display. The books elevate (literally) the lower items which balances them with the height of the plant.


Create a side table

Decorating with Books Post 2

Don’t have an occasional table? Not to worry! Just stack up large books to the height you want. Place a small tray on top and there you have it: a small display “table” for plants or all those tiny items you like to display but don’t know where to put.


Colour-coordinate your books to the display

Decorating with Books Post 3

This makes for a particularly nice way to display your books. Choose the ones (not that I’m saying you should judge a book by its cover!) with matching covers and colours and put them together. Now just accessorise around them with matching items. Here I’ve chosen a black and white theme, but you could just as well choose something really colourful or maybe look based around “earthy” colours. The choice is of course yours.


Use books instead of art

Decorating with Books Post 4

A single large book with a beautiful cover can easily be used like a picture or a piece of art. You could put it onto a small wall shelf (match the colour of the shelf to your wall so that it “disappears”) or a sideboard. Lean the book against the wall so that the cover is visible. Accessorise around it the same way you would if the book was a painting. Looks great, don’t you think?


Beyond the Living Room

Decorating with Books Post 5

Books can be used in any room (though I’m not a big fan of books in bathrooms or – ahem – toilets), after all, we usually have cook books in the kitchen, right? Books on fashion, perfume, jewellery etc. make a lovely addition to a dressing table. They fit beautifully with the feminine look of a dressing table and can (just like on a coffee table) elevate small items and make them stand out more than if they were just scattered on the table.


So, these are a few of my ideas for how to decorate with books. I hope you like them and they might prove helpful when you feel that your book collection is just getting this little bit too big for the bookshelf.


By Carole Poirot on 29.05.14

Guest Contributor

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