My Five Favorite Ways To Display Books

October 4, 2018

Books are for more than just reading. They can be used as decorative accessories throughout your home and not just displayed on book shelves.  I use books throughout our house to add visual interest and to sometimes spark conversations with friends.  Here are my top five favorite ways to display books.

Five ways to display books

Color Block Books 

Grouping books together by color will lend that burst of color in a room.  You can collect books with similar shades of a singular color and display them on a table top or use them to style a bookcase. Flea markets and thrift shops are ideal places to find unique hardcover books. Slightly worn spines and dogeared pages give the books character.

Another option is to cover books you already have with a simple cotton fabric in a solid color. I love this idea as it gives you a consistent look.  You would only need a yard to a yard and half to cover 3-4 books depending on how thick the books are. To do this fold the fabric over the book and using a little bit of hot glue or double sided tape secure the edges inside the flaps.


Frame Books with Unique Bookends 

Remember those metal bookends that lacked style and substance?  Sure, they held books upright and together but they weren’t pretty or stylish.  Instead of using them, opt for a few unique bookends instead.  I love the idea of using fairly heavy figurines that will provide weight against the books, keeping them from falling over on a shelf. I found a pair of elephants that work well. I use them on separate shelves to provide a bit of balance.  Of course, there are bookends available that are unique and more traditional. I spotted bookends one day that looked like an alligator.  One was the head and the other was the tail, so when used on a shelf it appeared that an alligator was sitting on the shelf with books.  Interesting objects like old metal roller skates or vintage cameras will offer a bit of whimsy and a good dose of personality.


Stack Books to Create a Table

I love the idea of stacking wide table top books on top of each other to create a side table. You could use a collection you already have or pick up a bunch at a flea market to stack. The wider they are the better the base you will have to work with. I would start with the widest book and then work up to a smaller book to give your table the illusion of tapering. For safety reasons I would not leave them within a traffic pattern in the room so they aren’t knocked over by mistake. Use this idea

Float Books on a Wall

I discovered these shelves by Umbra that allow you to stack books on a wall. Once stacked they look like the books are floating on the wall. Hang several in a grouping of three or more to create eye catching artwork while showing off your literary prowess. If you aren’t much of a reader, or you don’t have a large collection of books, you can find uniquely aged books at a thrift store, flea market or Library book sale to place on these shelves. Group them by color, or theme to tie them together. You could use this idea to start a collection of books in a nursery, or child’s room. I love this idea for displaying books.

Hide the Spines of the Books

Another option for displaying books is to slip your books into a book case with the spines facing the back of the case. This let’s all of the pages face forward providing a uniform look. It’s an easy approach to a monochromatic look.

How do you displays your books?

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