40 Ways to Style a Bookshelf Like a Design Pro

40 Ways to Style a Bookshelf Like a Design Pro
Image: iStock.com/KatarzynaBialasiewicz

styled bookshelf in living room

Bookshelf styling seems like a task no mortal should attempt. After all, only a design pro knows how to get all the accessories, baskets, and books to look well-coordinated and visually appealing on a wall or shelving unit. The rest of us are resigned to jamming all our stuff up there however we can get it to fit -- no finesse at all, right? Nope. Totally wrong. We all should feel empowered to do some professional-grade shelf-styling too.

Professional interior designers employ a number of tricks to make sure shelves are as pretty as they are purposeful. For example, bookshelves and floating shelves should have a set color scheme. Mixing textures and adding metallic elements are just a couple tricks pros use to make shelves stand out. Containers, such as glass jars and baskets, can organize and hide away smaller items. Plus, making sure accessories are in a color that stands out against the wall or back of the shelf is really key.

There are also some clever ways to get books to look more cohesive on the shelf (one is a teensy bit controversial though, so be prepared to love it or hate it).

We've got more on these secrets to perfect bookshelf styling. Plus, tons of photos of the most gorgeously arranged shelving units out there. Don't think of this as an organizing chore -- think of it as a fun decorating project!