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5 secrets to creating stylish and spacious shelves

Shelves offer a huge amount of space, but often rather than not, they’re overseen. Shelving, however, has many benefits. It can make a bare wall look useful plus it puts lots of focus on your treasured possessions, saving them from the closet. It can be pretty overwhelming though, when you’re starting from scratch and when you have no idea about how shelving arrangement works. You’re looking up at those empty shelves with big questions running through your mind. Patterns, positions, colours, order…where do I begin?  It’s really all about judgement and balance when it comes to shelving.


It’s important to make your shelves visually pleasing. Shelving is much more than just storage. It creates personality and layers to any room in your home. It can be a really fun and creative experience styling your shelves, because you’re in control and you’re presenting your own self through your shelves. It doesn’t need to be a complicated experience either. I’ve put together 5 tips that will assist you in creating the must have styled shelves.

Books are the way forward

Whilst this may seem the obvious choice, books can be underestimated in the world of shelf styling. They give off a sophisticated flair, and if styled right – you can create your own little library realm. You don’t need to go crazy with lots of books either, the key is minimalism. For space purposes you could keep your favourite books only as display pieces.


You could group these books by size into smalls stacks. Depending on how your shelves are laid out, you could place some books horizontally and some verticle. Mixing and matching can be fun, plus you can add other objects in between each stack to vary it up. If something doesn’t quite work, don’t be afraid to play around with it. Add in vases, decorative bowls and boxes to break up your books.

Add some background colour in

If you want to bring more substance to your room, a great way to do this is to paint a different colour behind your shelf. I painted the back of my bookshelf some time ago, it was great because the complimentary tones really brought out depth and character within the extra colour. I feel that if you leave a shelf too plain, it can look white washed, where as this idea will really bring life to your decor.

The green touch

Shelves are the perfect way to showcase plants. Each type of plant can bring something different, for example a plant that’s tumbled can give a urban jungle feel. A dracaena plant can give height, and spider like plants can give an extra modern touch. Plants are so pure and refreshing. They will bring a harmonious element to any shelf, especially paired with ceramic pots and bowls to give that fulfilling finishing touch.

Wall Art

Using wall art as a display above your shelving is very inspiring as it can transform any room into a creative haven. You could either go for the lean against the wall affect, or you can hang your favourite paintings on the wall just above your shelf. A nice touch, is to group photos together as a collage or you can have one larger picture to focus on. There’s no right or wrong with art, so go for it and experiment. Frames also don’t need to be the same, different shapes, sizes and colours can keep things interesting. 

Visual heights

It’s ideal to have objects on a shelf that vary in height so that it draws your eyes upward. A great way to envisage things is to picture an imaginary triangle – Smaller items should form the base of the triangle and the tallest item should be at the peak. this will create the illusion of height and will bring maximum space to your shelf. 

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