Bookcases, especially built-in ones, have become more popular than ever. Home builders and remodelers have made this feature more attainable and attractive, and homeowners have completely bought in! There is only one problem, “Where have all the books gone?”
In the past, the bookcase did exactly what its name implied, it housed books. Today, the bookcase has become clutter-free and beautifully staged, which sends my functionality barometer into a bit of a frenzy. Why spend $8,000 on perfectly milled white bookcases if we’re only going to put 3 things on it? I’m just saying…
I like to think of today’s bookshelves as an ode to the china cabinet, giving us a modern way to display our tchotchkes, favorite photographs, collectibles, hardcover books (without the paper sleeve please) and meaningful objects. The best bookcase displays are the ones that surrender something deep about the homeowners who inhabit the space. If not, it’s just pretty stuff to dust every couple of months.
Striking the perfect balance between just enough accessories, but not too many isn’t an easy task. So today we celebrate those designers that get it right, creating visually pleasing displays without resulting in visual clutter. Hopefully, a few books made it onto the shelves as well.
HGTV alum and designer, Emily Henderson gets it right every time. She has a knack for creating a visually appealing balance of objects, books, and color.
As is his custom, celebrity designer Nate Berkus makes the books the star of the show. To break things up, he places a few sea urchin gold accents strategically.
Although I am not sure who actually designed this bookcase, the first thing that jumps out at me is all the male inspired objects on the shelves. This immediately tells me that this space belongs to a man and that he has amazing taste to boot!
Anna Hackathorn, a designer with a vintage flair, shows us how it’s done. Her combination of vases, clocks, books and other accessories seems effortless, efficient and beautiful.
For designers, less is usually more when it comes to design. However, with bookcases it’s perfectly fine to add layers and layers of visual interest. Sparse bookcases are great for staging and selling homes, but when it comes to living, I’m all for bringing out the collectibles. If your objects are organized tastefully and purposefully, you will get the biggest bang for your built-in buck.