Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

Ten spectacular and easy ways to arrange your books

hero.jpg
hero2.jpg

We often find ourselves looking at the books on your shelves proudly, like they're our friends. They have taken us on amazing journeys, we've snuggled up with them in bed and even cried into them. And there is nothing more satisfying than arranging those tomes in the most perfect way possible.

As Argentine author Jorge Luis Borges' put it in his 1960s book Dreamtigers: "I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library". From arranging your books in colour order to stacking them in unusual ways, we look at ten exciting displays that prove, organising your books doesn't have to be as uniform as the alphabet.

Divide into light and dark

bellamumma.com via Pinterest

Good and bad, heroes and villains - chances are your books tell stories of both. Why not take inspiration from this and group your books by light and dark (or white and colour) covers, arranging them on opposite sides of your shelf. Not only does it bring some order to your shelf, it makes a real statement.


Order by height

apartmenttherapy.com

There's nothing more frustrating than an odd over-sized tome throwing off the balance of your perfectly lined shelf. But here's the solution. Create some space on a chest of drawers or desk and arrange your books by size, whether it's ascending, descending or in the shape of a wave (as pictured). Instead of bookends, use a small stack of books to prop up your collection.


Turn books into side tables

pinterest.com

Stack those old coffee table books to form a table for an unusual lamp (as pictured), vase or ornament. It saves you money and it'll bring character to any room with plain white walls.


Hang small frames off bookshelves

simplystated.realsimple.com via Pinterest

While hanging art over books might not be the most practical solution for often-used volumes, it's great use of space - especially when you can't drill holes into your rented apartment's walls - and adds lots of visual interest to bookshelves. If you have small shelves or a single shelf, opt for a small vintage mirror or framed illustrations.


Make a rainbow...

lovelyreveries.blogspot.co.uk via Pinterest

If you have a very colourful home library, chances are your bookshelves look chaotic and cluttered, fighting against any textiles and art you have in the same room. But when they're organised by colour, it makes for a beautiful focal point and your shelf instantly looks more streamlined.


...or embrace colour blocking

lepetitchouchou.com.br via Pinterest

As an alternative to the rainbow effect, arrange books in groups of colour. If you don't have enough of a particular shade, cover books with wrapping paper and hand write the title of the book on the spine.


Be selective with the spines

Chances are, you haven't touched a lot of books on your shelf for years. Why not flip those the other way and keep the spines of your favourite books forward facing? It's a beautiful homage to your taste in literature and very personal.

brainpickings.org via Pinterest


Squeeze books into odd empty spaces

abchao.com via Pinterest

You may not have a fireplace (as pictured) but we can take note from how the space has been used. Books are a great way to fill those awkward hollows and corners in walls. It'll also put your Tetris skills to the test!


Accessorise shelves with ornaments

sasinteriors.net via Pinterest

This is a brilliant mix of books, accessories, and personal mementos to bring your personality into your bookcase. Start lining up your books on one side of your shelf, support the end with stack of two to four books, and arrange an ornament or candle on that stack. Repeat this on other shelves and even place a small frame and photograph in between piles.


Take to stacking wherever there's free space

ticklishfromadistance.blogspot.co.uk and itsmydarlin.com via Pinterest

Don't dismiss piles and piles of books as clutter. When they're neat and they pop up in the most unexpected of places, they're just as charming as a bookcase.

(Words: Sejal Kapadia)

Related

main-hero.jpg

The women behind the books

hero.jpg

Best books of 2014

rexfeatures-3609673p.jpg

Top 10 most read books in the world

hero-2.jpg

The top 10 most incredible cakes on the internet

Pastel_Rainbow_Cake_018.jpg

How to make ten of the most impressive and creative Easter cakes

rexfeatures-2586045d.jpg

Britain's most incredible sheds

More

Practical Magic is FINALLY getting the prequel of your dreams

Flip the switch and let the cauldron bubble…

by Kayleigh Dray
14 Sep 2017

The Moomins are coming back to TV and the cast is incredible

Ready your Little My topknots

by Amy Swales
12 Sep 2017

Your £10 note is worth a LOT of money if it features this tiny detail

Oh Jane Austen, you’re spoiling us…

by Kayleigh Dray
12 Sep 2017

The Fifty Shades Freed trailer has arrived – and it’s pretty dark

Mrs Grey will see you now

by Amy Swales
11 Sep 2017

10 brilliant books to curl up with this September

From gripping crime fiction to beautiful poetry

by Sarah Shaffi
01 Sep 2017

Puberty guide causes fury with “problematic” explanation of breasts

The book said girls have breasts to make them look “grown-up and attractive”

by Sarah Biddlecombe
30 Aug 2017

The 5 biggest plot holes in Harry Potter, as exposed by fans

Accio problematic plot points!

by Susan Devaney
30 Aug 2017

50 unmissable books to kickstart your autumn reading

Your first look at the essential titles for autumn 2017

by Francesca Brown
25 Aug 2017

The 10 must-read books for anyone with siblings

There's often nothing more page-turning than the secrets between siblings

by Stylist
23 Aug 2017

St. Vincent is giving this iconic novel a feminist film makeover

The musician is giving an Oscar Wilde project a major twist

by Amy Swales
17 Aug 2017