what I do

what I do

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Styling bookcases

"Creating a home that reflects your personal style, and the actual living that goes on in it, is a process that happens over time." - Kevin Sharkey* 

I love working with all kinds of clients. Some have a clear understanding of who they are, what they like and what they want their house to be. Others have no idea. Some have very few decorative objects and others have too many. As a designer, it is my job to find just the right amount of accessories for each client and whether that is by helping them acquire or editing what they already have, the ultimate goal is to give them a home that reflects their own personal style and tells a story about who they are as a family. 

This particular client has collected wonderful objects over the years. She has a great sense of style and it shows in what she has purchased. But she needed help editing and styling. Especially with her bookcases. And so I cleaned them up a bit. 

And of course in my excitement to get started I forgot to take before photos. But to give you an idea, these two shelves were wall to wall books. It was great for storage but too heavy looking for this particular room. I encouraged her to edit though some of the books that did not need to be displayed. She got rid of some and we stored some in the cabinets below.

I started by taking everything off the shelves. I went shelf-by-shelf putting back the things she loved the most first and then adding a few things of my own. The new items came from a variety of sources; a shopping trip to a few HomeGoods stores, Crate and Barrel, Pottery Barn and Z Gallerie (that wonderful Ikat bowl), and I brought a few things from my own collection.

I love the result as it very much reflects my client's style and showcases the things she loves and that have meaning to her. 

Inspired to re-do your own bookcases? Here are a few helpful tips:

1. Group "like things" together. A collection looks less cluttered and more interesting when grouped together.

2. Books do not have to be lined up in a row. Vary them by placing some upright, some on their sides and even showcase special ones by standing them up on display. Use them as a backdrop for other objects and don't be afraid to take off their jackets to see what is underneath!

3. Leave some negative space around your objects. Think like a gallery or museum curator.

Come back next week and I will show you more of this beautiful house - remember the switched dining room ... There is more to see!
Have a great weekend everyone! 

*quote by Kevin Sharkey from Martha Stewart Living - September 2011 edition


Jessie said...

The styling of the bookshelves look great! Love the blue ikat bowl especially.

Have a wonderful holiday weekend, Sherri!


Mary Ann Pickett said...

Nice job. Great taste and advice!