The sight of an empty bookcase is a little daunting. So, I started by painting the back of the bookcases a strong contrasting color. This instantly begins to "fill" them. I also love the look of wallpaper (or even fabric) on the backs.
Since these bookcases are in our family room, I decided to fill them with personal items, but to also mix in accessories that I liked and of course, books. Alot of people feel strongly about only displaying books that they've actually read. I like to use mainly old books in great colors. So, have I read all of the books on my shelves? I have three small kids. What do you think? :)
I think the key to good bookcase styling is the same as accessorizing the rest of your home: keep it simple. While bookshelves can be a nice place to display collections, I like to choose fewer, larger pieces to mix in with books and photos, rather then cramming lots of "things" into a small space.
Of course, the real secret to bookcase styling is to try, try again! Here's what my first attempt looked like:
While not terrible, something just seemed off to me. The first step was to bring in more books--an obvious, but sometimes overlooked, solution.
The red frames and coral were also bothering me, so I removed them. I wanted a more cohesive look so I gathered some gold/bronze accessories I was no longer using and got out the spray paint:
Is this an inventive drop cloth or what?!
I also added a large silver tray amid the black & white photographs on the top, just to break up the straight lines and to add height.
My formerly bronze pineapple became one of my favorite pieces:
My dad recently gave me one of his old paint-by-numbers; I like the color that it adds:
Finished, for now: