When it comes to decorating, I always know I can turn to a good book. I don’t mean reading about all of the latest and greatest design tips and DIY projects but instead using books as a go-to decorating accessory. (Even our wedding was full of them!)
Would you hate me if I told you that I never have nor do I plan on reading most of the books lining my shelves and stacked on my side tables? Don’t get me wrong, I really do love to read (although I find myself struggling to find the time to sit down with a good book at this stage in my life) but to me, often times, it’s more about creating that library-like feeling than adding to my literary collection. I imagine that there are mixed emotions about using books for looks among designers, decorators and especially book lovers, and while I wish I did own shelves and shelves full of literary classics that I was able to read in front of the fireplace with a cup of Earl Grey, for now I shop for books based on size and color at thrift shops. I just think rows and stacks of books are the best and easiest way to create the appearance of effortlessly decorated surfaces and as many heights and homemade pedestals as you can dream of.
When it comes to displaying books, on shelves or tables or wherever you may have them, I say throw out that old and dated rulebook. Gone are the days when we had to have our books perfectly arranged according to height with the bindings out. There are no rules when it comes to designing your own home (except for maybe using wallpaper borders…never ever use wallpaper borders) so stack and display your books however you like.
I love shopping local thrift stores like Goodwill for books to add to my collection ($1.99 for all hardbacks…can’t beat that!) I always throw away the book sleeves and display the cover itself when it comes to books for looks so look for books according to the size and color you’re searching for. I guess that means I’m totally judging a book by its cover…hmm…
Anywho… So what are my tricks for disguising books that that seem perfect aside from an undesirable title like this one?(Look I really do love my sister…but let’s take it easy here. I’m not trying to ruffle any feathers.)
Turn your books around! Some people may not like the idea of displaying the pages rather than the binding, but I say go for it! I think it really adds a cool look to your book collection and you’re able to disguise any awkward titles and subjects without diminishing your library collection.
If you’re not into that, try wrapping your books in Kraft paper or any other pretty paper you have laying around (if anything, it’ll take you back to your high school and college textbook days.) I like the way this looks too and it’s a great way to create a neutral backdrop in your space. I love the feeling that stacks and rows of books provide you in a space. Just because you haven’t read them (or don’t ever plan on reading them) doesn’t mean you can’t get the library vibe in your own home. The torn and tattered, old with the new, pages and pages of history feeling stacked on your shelves or propped under you favorite family photo isn’t something that should just be reserved for the literary elite. Go ahead, break the rules…I dare ya!
What are your thoughts on decorating with books? Is shopping for books based on style and color a no-no in your mind?