10 Effortless Designer Ways to Style Your Bookshelf

10 Effortless Designer Ways to Style Your Bookshelf

Shelf-styling is a trend for modern Singaporean homes. Even small rooms welcome a lovely bookshelf because of its multiple storage and display functions. 

Bookshelves are gems of home interior design. If you are looking for a perfect platform to personalise your interior design, a bookshelf can help you in many ways. It serves as a home for your favourite novels, ceramic collections, art pieces, framed photos, and other accessories. Shelf-styling also helps in turning the cluttered corner into a fantastic focal point.

Read on to discover some easy ways to decorate your bookshelf and turn it into a multi-purpose display unit.

When decorating a bookshelf, focus first on the items you already have to avoid breaking your budget to get excess decorative items. Think books, artworks, potted greeneries, some vases that occupy too much of your tabletop space, and other accessories that will help you achieve a cohesive design. The purpose of this is to reduce the clutter from different parts of your home and turn them into valuable decorations.

Find a common element to achieve cohesiveness with your items. It can be the colour scheme or style. Once you display all your pieces on the bookshelf, you may now decide whether to buy extra decorative items or not.

Start with large items to create balance

Display Units and Bookshelves - Balance by starting with the larger items

When decorating your bookshelf, it is good to start with the larger items first to come up with a more precise estimate of the space. The basic layout strategy is to place larger items like vases, baskets, or artworks first in a staggering manner to get the balance right. Arrange your books based on your preferred style. Add smaller items or potted plants to create depth and texture to your design. Make sure to achieve cohesiveness by setting up a theme.

Apply the rule of thirds

Display Units and Bookshelves - Apply the Rule of Thirds

Seeing things in three or in odd numbers makes a design look more balanced than in pairs. When decorative items are arranged in odd numbers, they provide a centre, a focal point that anchors all other pieces. This adds extra appeal without making your surface look too occupied. 

The rule of three does not only apply to parallel design. You can arrange three items on your open shelf depending on your preference. Place two items beside each other, leave a small space, then place the third item. You can also put a vase and horizontally stacked books in one cubby hole, then balance the look by putting a small ceramic plate on top of the stack.

Remember that you can break the rules. You can arrange by odd numbers first and modify it with what you think is best for your design.

Choose a colour scheme for your accessories

Display Units and Bookshelves - Choose a colour scheme for your accessories

A good way to achieve cohesiveness in your bookshelf design is to arrange items based on a theme or a colour scheme. Having a scheme does not mean that you will create a monotonous design. You can choose one base colour for all decorations to give your arrangement a common element. You can also combine it with textures. To create a uniform look, you can stack your books according to colour. Of course, this depends on how you want your arrangement to be. It is still important that you can easily find your books when you want to read them.

When experimenting with colours, make sure that you have a display unit or bookshelf that works well with your colour scheme.

Personalise your bookshelf with your mementos

Display Units and Bookshelves - Personalise your bookshelf with your mementos

The best way to personalise your home is to display the things that are memorable to you. Do you love to travel? Bring out your souvenirs, artworks, photos, or collections and create your showcase shelf. 

Alternate book stacking

Display Units and Bookshelves - Alternate book stacking

If you want to create a design mainly with your books, for your reading nook or home office library, for example, you can still create depth and variation by stacking books alternately. You can go with the conventional vertical book stacking for the first shelf, diagonal for the second, and horizontal for the third. You can play with your configuration until you achieve a design that you will love.

Anchor your books with heavier decorations

Display Units and Bookshelves - Anchor your books with heavier decorations

If you do not have a big book collection, you can create a balance of books and other decors by stacking fewer books in a staggered manner and anchoring them with heavier items. This is to physically balance the books and also to balance the design. For horizontal stacking, you can apply the rule of thirds by adding figurines or low decorative items on top of your books.

Put artworks and other ornaments along with your books

Display Units and Bookshelves - Put artworks and other ornaments along with your books

Bigger bookcases give you the luxury to add bigger decorative pieces like framed artworks and decorative baskets that can double up as containers. You can place these items in strategic places on your shelf to achieve balance.

Use a dark coloured bookshelf

Display Units and Bookshelves - Use a dark coloured bookshelf

To create a bookshelf design that focuses on books, use a dark coloured bookshelf. A darker piece of furniture makes a smart look and adds depth to your space. If you have books with lighter colours, a dark bookshelf provides a bold and notable contrast to your area. When pushed through a monochromatic wall, this bookshelf can create a striking faux-built in appeal.

Incorporate natural decorative elements

Display Units and Bookshelves - Incorporate natural decorative elements

Greeneries, indoor flowers, shells, decorative rocks, and other natural decorations can give your home a refreshing look with their unique and effortless details. Some bits of nature and outdoor decorations create an interesting touch to your flat. A few natural greens, nudes, and ivories make your space charming and notably elegant, while woods and stones contribute to a rustic feel to your interior design.

Create a gallery wall beside your bookshelf

Display Units and Bookshelves - Create a gallery wall beside your bookshelf

Complete a modern look by setting up a gallery wall beside a tall legged bookshelf. If you have a low and wide bookshelf, you can set up the gallery wall on top to fill in the blank area and anchor your whole design. 

For a practical bookshelf and gallery wall combination, align your wall arts or framed pieces with the edges of your bookshelf. It is also essential to take note of your bookshelf's existing decorations to make it cohesive.


Amazing bookshelf designs are everywhere. On Pinterest, Instagram, and other platforms, you can see that people love to decorate this versatile furniture. With a quality display unit or a bookshelf, choice decorations, and a little bit of creativity, you can have fun while building your very own #shelfie.

For more tips, tricks, and quality home and office furniture solutions online in Singapore, visit us at Megafurniture.sg.