How To Style Shelves?

How To Style Shelves?

How To Style Shelves?

Styling shelves can be a fun and creative way to showcase your personality and add interest to your home decor. But, whether you’re styling shelves for storage or a decorative purpose, there are some key things to consider when making the right decisions.

A shelf should look like a well-planned display, not a haphazard collection of items. To achieve this, keep the formula consistent but vary the heights, textures, and colors.


Color is one of the most important factors when styling shelves, as it allows you to create a cohesive and stylish display. In addition, you can choose colors that will complement the rest of the room and allow you to switch up your style as seasons change.

Opt for light gray as the base color if you want to add a touch of modernity to your shelves. This color is a great choice for modern rustic decor, and it also exposes the grain of the wood.

In addition to light gray, you can also experiment with blue or yellow to add depth and texture. These neutral colors work well with most interior color palettes, making them easy to bring in a unique and creative accent.

Using contrast to highlight your shelf display is essential to creating an eye-catching design. This can be achieved by placing different colors, sizes, textures, glosses, and shapes.

You should also avoid arranging items uniformly. Instead, divide items into groups that tell a story and keep the arrangement from feeling cluttered or disorganized.

Another great way to style your shelves is by incorporating different heights and sizes of objects. This makes the overall display more appealing to the eyes and gives the space a more natural feel.

To achieve this look, combine small and large items in similar color schemes to create a layered effect. Or you could use a combination of different materials, such as books and woven baskets, to create a more textured effect.

Finally, you can create a dynamic display by alternating the items on each shelf. This will make the shelf look more interesting and encourage movement in the space.

In the case of shelving, you’ll want to avoid putting too many small items on a single shelf, as this can feel crowded and unappealing to the eye. This is especially true if the shelf is in a high-trafficked area, like the entryway or living room.

You can add personality to your shelves by including decorative accents such as vases, candle holders, or flower pots. Faux plants are also a great way to add color and give your shelves some life. These items can be found at most home improvement stores and will enhance the overall aesthetic of your shelf display.


Shelving is essential to any home design – from a full remodel to a quick refresh. Styled shelves make your space look cohesive and well-curated.

When styling shelves, it’s important to balance colors, heights, and textures. It’s also crucial to consider the visual weight of your objects – the size, proportion, and depth of color or the weight of texture or pattern.

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The texture is important when styling shelves because it adds dimension to your design. It is also a great way to break up a flat or neutral shelf.

The textures of basket weave, shiny glass (think frames or vases), wood, and metal can all contribute to your shelves’ overall style and visual interest. This can be done by alternating these finishes throughout the design.

If you are feeling a bit overwhelmed by all the options, try to focus on one or two key elements. This can include photos that make you smile, artwork you’ve collected or created yourself, or trinkets that take you back to a special place.

Another great idea is to use books – they are an easy way to add interest and variety to your shelves while keeping it simple. Arrange your books in coordinating colors to create a cohesive look and give them some depth.

Shelves are also a great way to showcase personal items that have meaning for you. Whether it’s a piece of art or a family heirloom, showcasing these items will help you keep your space fresh and interesting without withouclutteringed.

Choosing a few key pieces to decorate your shelves will ensure that they are cohesive and represent your style. Then, when you want a refresh, simply changing out your decorative pieces will keep the look fresh and updated.

Creating a visually appealing design can be challenging, especially when your room has limited shelving space. However, styling your shelves can be a fun, creative process and will evolve.


Shelves are a great way to add storage and organization to any space. They can be used to display books, plants, or other decorative objects. The key is to style them appropriately to be functional and visually appealing.

One of the most important things to remember when styling shelves is height. The height of an item is critical because it gives the shelf a 3D effect and creates depth. You should play around with different heights to find the right balance for your shelving and try layering items.

When layering, you should also vary the lengths of your items. This helps to create a curated look and avoids the staircase effect.

Objects like candles, vases, or tall photo frames can help give your shelves a visual lift and act as risers for other items. These can be placed on the top of the shelves, and then smaller, short items can be layered to create depth.

The width of a shelf is also important when planning your shelving arrangement. It will determine how many books you can store on a shelf, and you’ll also want to consider the spacing between them.

If you’re storing books, the ideal shelf spacing is between 8 and 12 inches. This will allow you to store the biggest books on the shelf without them getting too cramped or overwhelming.

Another important factor to consider when choosing shelf height is whether or not you’ll be able to reach the shelves with your hands. If you’re storing heavy objects, this is an especially important consideration.

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A shelf should be at a height that’s easy for your eyes to see and comfortable to stand on when needed. You’ll also want to consider the height of the room the shelves are in.

A good rule of thumb is to space shelves 7 to 15 inches apart, depending on the size of the room and lifestyle needs. This space will not only give the shelves more depth, but it will also allow for eye movement on the wall.


It’s important to have variety when styling shelves. Whether you have a small or large space, if you don’t vary the items you put on the shelf, it can look cluttered and disorganized.

Various textures, sizes, and colors are great for making your shelves pop. It’s also easy to add a few accessories to your shelves to make them feel more like part of the room.

Adding baskets, boxes, and other containers can add interest to your shelves while visually unifying them. You can also use them to house smaller items such as vases, candles, and greenery.

Another way to create visual interest on your shelves is to mix up how you display your books. For example, try stacking some vertically, placing them with their spines facing out (page side out), and arranging them in clusters for a more eclectic look.

You can strategically place framed prints on your shelves to add texture and interest. Using a frame that’s the same color as your wall or contrasting it helps balance the decor.

When adding decor to your shelves, select pieces that are meaningful to you. This will allow you to feel good about the items on your shelves and the overall mood in your room.

For example, if you have a framed photograph of your grandmother, you can style your shelves around it and make it a focal point of the space.

Shelves are a great spot to display your favorite photos, and they can also be a reflection of your style. You can even put a few of your most prized possessions on your shelves, such as a collection of Polaroid snapshots from your travels or a coffee cup you love.

While you can always change up your shelf decor, sticking with your favorite things is best. Otherwise, the result will look impersonal and generic, like something found in a hotel lobby or staged for a real estate listing.

Six Tips On How To Style Shelves

  1. Start with a clean slate: Remove all items from your shelves and start with a clean slate. This will help you see your shelves with fresh eyes and make organizing and styling them easier.
  2. Create a color scheme: Choose a color scheme for your shelves to create a cohesive and visually appealing display. You can choose colors that complement your room’s decor or use a bold and contrasting color scheme.
  3. Mix and match items: Use various items to create interest on your shelves. Mix and match items like books, decorative objects, plants, and picture frames. Vary the sizes and shapes of your items to create visual interest.
  4. Play with heights: Vary the heights of your items to create depth and visual interest on your shelves. You can use books or decorative boxes to create height or a stack of items to create a focal point.
  5. Use negative space: Leave some negative space on your shelves to create a sense of balance and to prevent them from looking cluttered. This will also help to draw attention to the items you have chosen to display.
  6. Add lighting: Consider adding lighting to your shelves to create a warm and inviting atmosphere. You can highlight your display using small lamps, string lights, or LED strip lighting.
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Remember, the key to styling shelves is having fun and experimenting with different styles and arrangements. Take your time and play around with different items until you find a display that you love!


What are some fundamental shelf decorating tips?

Consider styling shelves with a combination of aesthetic and practical goods including books, plants, artwork, and ornamental accessories. To provide visual interest and balance, use a range of heights and materials. To make a more visually beautiful arrangement, combine objects in odd numbers, such as three or five.

How can I make my shelves seem neater?

Consider organising goods by colour, size, or theme to make your shelves appear more tidy. Employ baskets, trays, or boxes to organise smaller objects and give a more unified appearance. Provide some negative space between objects to make your shelves appear more open and airy.

What are some useful products for decorating shelves?

Books, flowers, picture frames, ornamental boxes, sculptures, and plants are all good items to utilise while designing shelves. Items that reflect your particular interests, such as trip souvenirs or hobby-related things, can also be included.

How can I get a unified design while decorating shelves?

Consider utilising a colour palette or theme that binds all of the objects together to create a coherent effect when designing shelves. Employ things of varying heights and sizes, but keep the overall look constant by utilising a similar texture or substance. Don’t be scared to use the same objects or colours on many shelves.

How do I keep my shelves in order?

To begin balancing your shelves, place larger items on the bottom shelves and smaller ones on the upper levels. To add visual interest, combine horizontal and vertical pieces and change the heights of things inside each shelf. Take regular steps back to assess the overall appearance and make improvements as required.

What should I avoid when it comes to shelf styling?

Avoid crowding shelves with too many things while styling them. Allow for some negative space to make your shelves appear more open and spacious. Items that are too similar in size or shape should be avoided since they might produce a repetitive effect. Lastly, don’t be afraid to experiment with various configurations until you discover one that works for you.