Monday, March 23, 2015

How To Style Your Bookshelf

Decorating our Restoration Hardware bookshelf was such a fun project for me.  From the beginning, I had a very clear vision of what I wanted; gender friendly and somewhat masculine {not overly girly}, a neutral color palette, an array of interesting antiques combined with contemporary accessories, and lots of great books in subjects that reflect both of our personalities.

Read on to see how it all came together...

From the moment that I placed the order for our HUGE bookshelf, I knew exactly how I wanted it to look and I set out searching Pinterest + the depths of the internet for a little bookshelf inspo.  It didn't take long to realize that what I was envisioning wasn't really out there {and if it was, I certainly couldn't find it}.  Yes, the bookshelf images on Pinterest are beautiful and well photographed, but I was disappointed in how overly feminine everything looked; so much lacquer with pink & gold accents....seriously how do men live in these homes!?  I wanted our bookshelf to be a statement piece that reflected both Adam's personality, as well as my own.

I just love that little zebra figurine!  It reminds me of our honeymoon in South Africa.

Sticking with a neutral color palette allows all of the decor on the bookshelf to flow together.  I also chose books that had a neutral colored spine in subjects that we are both passionate about; art, travel, cars, architecture, fashion, and history.  We both love to travel, and I've tried to get into the habit of picking up a hard covered book on the area we travel to whenever we're on vacation.  It's a nice little reminder of your travels and functions as unique home decor!

I grouped together books according to color and used them to elevate various objects of curiosity.  The small binoculars are an antique that I picked up locally, and were used during World War II.  I am fascinated by history, and have always loved the untold stories that are found in antiques.

A lot of the books + contemporary accessories were purchased through One Kings Lane which is a great place for finding one off pieces.

I tried to vary the way the books were stacked, placing some of them horizontally to use for displaying urns & unique vases, and stacking others vertically.  I also tried to vary the textures of the pieces that I displayed; an aged terracotta urn, a smooth white lacquer box, and a wooden bowl.  Since they're in the same color family, they all balance each other out.

The white lacquer box displays a brown agate on it's top, and I use the box for storing votive candles.  When we have guests over for dinner, I love to fill the bookshelf with votive candles to create a warm ambiance.  

A glass antique demijohn serves as a bookend, while the cream colored linen boxes house loose photographs.

This is perhaps one of my very favorite pieces on our bookshelf!  I found this French terracotta pot that dates back to the 1800's and just love the patina that has developed over the years.  I potted a African Violet in it for a bit of earthy greenery on the bookshelf.

The finished product!  Below, I've linked a few decorative objects that are similar to what I used and a few others that would be perfect on your bookshelf....

 Thanks for reading! xx


  1. I needed this post so badly!! I was looking at our shelves yesterday and just thinking that they needed to be styled better!! Thanks for all of this! xo, Biana - BlovedBoston

  2. Wow this looks beautiful, very Pinterest worthy!

  3. Really love it, would look great in my home:) :) The binoculars would go down well with my partner Ross, he collects WWII militaria:) Really great jobx



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