I have always been an avid reader. From the time I was young I would pile books up next to my bed as an ongoing reading list and ask for books as birthday and Christmas gifts. My husband also reads a ton and we ended up featuring books as one of the central components in our wedding. We used them as props during our engagement pictures and then I wrapped a stack of books in lace to be part of the centerpiece on each table at our wedding reception.
I use books as decor in my home all the time for a variety of reasons. Having books in each room of the house is a true reflection of who we are as a couple. Additionally, they take up a lot of space when needed, come in a variety of colors and patterns, and can become a talking piece when guests come over.
I’m sharing several ways to use books as decor in areas of your home that you may not have considered. Many people designate books to book cases or book shelves and they can be used in so many more spaces than that!
I have mentioned on here many times how much I adore my bar cart. I try to re-style it at least once a month because it’s a focal point in our home. It’s also the most perfect forum to add some books! My cart has a top shelf and a bottom shelf. As shown below, you can line them up vertically on the top shelf to add some height to your overall aesthetic. You can also lay them horizontally on the top or bottom shelf and stack other items on top or use it to raise the height of other items you want to highlight.
Books: Mastering the Art of French Cooking; The Cocktail Party; What’s a Hostess to Do; Humans of New York
Decor: Hearth and Hand Framed Music Notes; Marble Coasters (similar); Wooden Initial (similar)
We have a 6-cube shelving unit in our living room to the right of our television. It’s there temporarily until we re-design the living room this year. We used to use it as a sideboard in the dining room in our old apartment, but there isn’t a formal dining room in our new house so it’s been re-purposed. The shelving unit is another perfect spot to display some books. We don’t have a coffee table at the moment…again waiting until we re-design the space, so I’ve stacked some of my favorite coffee table books on top of the unit and placed one of our wedding photos on top. I balanced out the design of the sideboard by adding a tall lamp in the middle and our record player on the right side, which is around the same height at the books. You could also line books up vertically on the sideboard and add fun book ends!
There is a built in hutch in our hallway that I’m assuming is original from when the house was built in the 1950’s. We have plans this year to re-paint it and add new drawer pulls, but for now it’s all white which makes it easy to decorate! I’ve filled the middle shelf with books to make the hutch look full. On the top shelf I’ve placed a few books horizontally and placed decor on top. Being on top of the books gives the initial some height and adds a pop of color. Records are placed vertically on the left of the top shelf and I kept the bottom shelf minimal because the top half is so busy.
The kitchen is the perfect spot to display some of your favorite cookbooks. To spare as much counter space as possible I’d recommend just picking a few and placing them vertically between some of the items you use regularly. This is a great way to add a pop of color if your kitchen is more neutral or add some neutral tones to a colorful kitchen! Don’t have much counter space? Consider adding a floating shelf to display your cookbooks and any other kitchen knick knacks.
As you can see from the pictures I tend to prefer adding more colorful books and other decor pieces to a neutral background. Farmhouse style is super popular right now and I definitely love a lot of the farmhouse items I see out there, but I need color in my life too! Books are a great way to add that personal touch or pop of color to that space in your home that needs a little pick me up or even a more elaborate re-design.