Despite the internet movement to all things digital, we understand that it’s hard to part with some of those favorite old books and cd’s that have become an intrinsic part of one’s lifetime memories – especially when some date back to childhood days. Sometimes, outdated items are just that; little reminders of the things that have deeply touched us during the course of our lives. The question then becomes – how do we keep them in environmental sight for emotional comfort’s sake when we are now socially encouraged to dump all unnecessary stuff and – simplify?
A few keepsakes are to be cherished because that’s exactly what they are – little personal treasures! When dealing with small household rooms, one of the MOST important things to keep in mind when desiring to feature them as part of the decor; is to find unique ways to display books. If you have a small bookshelf and a lot of books, it doesn’t mean that you need to jam the shelves, so to speak. In fact, doing just the opposite will help keep you personally organized. Using fewer items on the shelves will also help to keep your smaller room from appearing junk-filled.
1. Select just a small group of just your favorite books. Place small groupings of books on random shelves, either by subject matter or by size. Allow some to stand and some to remain horizontally stacked. If you group the books by their size, have differing sizes stacked on varying shelves. Consider storing the remainder of your books in a ‘concealing cabinet’. Every month or so, switch out the shelf books with a new group of the stored books, and you’ll have an instant change of decor without having to completely redecorate. Occasionally switching out your books enables you to reconnect with those things which are stored away.
2. Randomly, angle a horizontal stack of books in one corner of a shelf, so that the ends of each book touch the back wall and a side wall. Then move them out an inch or so from both walls. This angled effect is unusual and helps to create more exciting visuals, because not all books have been stacked to the standard rectangle area.
3. Place a see through and colorful glass vase or globe next to a set of stacked books to create a bright pop of color. The clear colored glass allows the human eye to see through the ‘space’ of the rectangle shelf area, creating a ‘sense’ of more shelf room than there really is. The glass globe or vase should be of a complimentary accent color. Let’s say your room walls are a light gray and your favorite colors are teal and orange. Complimenting the room with an area rug, pillows or lampshade with these colors in mind, can be enhanced by colored glass on a shelf – in a similar tone or color. This will help to bring the room together.
4. Place the heaviest books you have on a bottom shelf to help balance the room. Only stack a few at a time.
5. Try leaning just a few favorite books in small sections of a bookshelf.
6. Books do not always have to be the predominant item on a shelf! Sometimes, using a stack of books as an accessory to a larger item – such as a side or coffee table, trunk or jewelry box, helps to balance out other display items.
7. Books do not always have to be stacked on a conventional book shelf. Try stacking them in furniture not originally designed to be a bookshelf!
8. Sometimes two rooms coexist with one another where there is not enough room for a full wall. In apartments for instance, often a dining area is combined with a living area. To help create more privacy for each area, try implementing a see-through bookshelf, using the books and items stored on the shelf as a visually beautiful room divider.
All of the images above reflect simplicity in room design, but also allow for memorable keepsakes to be displayed and that is after all – what a home is all about!