Shelf Styling Tips and Tricks

Shelf Styling Tips and Tricks

Shelves can take up a good chunk of real estate in your home and when they do, they become a focal point. Whether it is a bookcase in your office, open shelves in your kitchen or built-in shelves in your living room, they all demand attention.

It’s no secret that styling these shelves can be a difficult and intimidating task, but it doesn’t have to be complicated. We have made shelf styling super simple for you by sharing the items and formulas you need to transform these spaces from bare and boring to decorated and delightful while taking the guesswork and stress out of decorating all at the same time.

First step in this process is to gather a few things:

· Books (as many or few as you want)

· Framed photographs/artwork/signs

· Vases/bowls/pottery

· some mementos, collections or meaningful items

· Sculptures/figurines/decorative objects

· Plants/flowers

The next step is to use the tips below to help you figure out where to put them on your shelves!

How to Style Shelves

• Start with larger items first: It’s easy to come undone when you begin styling your shelf with small decorative items. Instead, start to fill your shelf with larger items such as woven baskets or artwork — this will help you get the scale and balance right and give you a basic layout.

• Bring in artwork: Consider placing artwork towards the back of the shelf and layer smaller decorative items in front — using the depth of the shelf will create interest.

• Mix up book placement: Books instantly add a homey feel to shelf styling. Make the most of them by stacking books horizontally and vertically, and aligning some stacks to the left, right or center of a shelf. By mixing up the positioning of books and piles, you’ll keep things interesting and help balance the ‘weight’ of your shelf styling.

• Introduce decorative objects: What can take your shelf styling up a notch is the introduction of decorative objects. These could be pieces you’ve collected on your travels, treasured family heirlooms or latest season homewares.

Depending on your style, you could use almost anything as decorative accents. People who embrace the eclectic style will often use an old typewriter, whereas Scandi-lovers will lean towards concrete décor.

• Place an item on your stack: One of my favorite ways to give your shelf styling confidence is by layering, and an easy trick to do this is by placing items on top of stacks. If you’ve created a few book stacks on your shelf, simply place a small decorative item on top.

• Decorate in odd numbers: arranging items in odd numbers creates a more balanced look. By that I mean, creating arrangements of 1, 3, 5 or even 7 items. If an arrangement isn’t working for you, consider changing the height or scale of some pieces. Perhaps everything is too same-same or perhaps the items are too large or small.

• Add greenery: Indoor plants add a pop of life, have a stack of health benefits and it’s an easy way to add more materials and dimension to your shelf styling. If you don’t have a green thumb, you can use artificial plants for the same visual effect.

• Stand back and revise: the final and most important step is to stand back and edit. Look at your shelf and ask yourself — is it too busy or bland? Do you need to inject some color or balance things out? Sometimes less is more and embracing a little blank space can give the rest of your shelf styling room to breathe

If you have more questions, feel free to reach us at or call (816)389-5900