Skip to content

11 Styling Tips for Shelves You Will Love

It is correct that shelves primarily came about as a way of storage; however, the decoration world has slowly but surely morphed their performance. No more are they home just to books and dishes, now they encourage posh screens filled with knickknacks, jars, art and more. Irrespective of what’s topping your shelves, the key to transforming them from a simple holding spot for household goods to a stylized design feature lies in the balance (quite literally). Without a feeling of balance, shelves can seem overloaded, pristine, or like a hurried gardener. However, once balance is achieved, your stylized shelves may be on their method of stealing the show. Continue reading for some suggestions on getting the balance right in your shelves!


1. Consider your shelf installation. Before you even begin filling your shelves with items, take under account the installation of the actual shelves. Strike a feeling of balance off the bat by installing them at varying heights and widths irregular to your typical bookshelf. It averts a staid appearance and helps to maintain balance as you begin adding things.

2. Add height with art. When you have a shorter shelf over a longer shelf, place a taller item, including a great piece of artwork, at the end of the longer shelf to attain balance. Since it expands the height of the shelf over it, the shelves as a whole feel cohesive.

Archipelago Hawaii Luxury Home Designs

3. Place similar items in different spaces. When you have a little shelving area which you are filling with largely similar things, you can still make it visually interesting by placing the very same things in opposing spaces. Vary the heights by adding more bowls to a pile or adding a taller liquor bottle to the glass department.

Kerrie L. Kelly

4. Vary the direction of these novels. This is a simple trick that will instantly help you accomplish balance in a shelf: Set your books both vertically and horizontally, altering the presentation in every individual shelf. Intersperse them with items, propped by the novels, which means that your attention continues to linger on all the interesting products.

5. Create balance through color. These shelves are very simplified but have achieved balance by concentrating on the placement of this pop of orange. The key was placing the orange blossom piece on the left-hand corner, which pulls in the orange out of the drawers on the ideal side.

Fiorella Design

6. Create balance through a selected theme of colours. Like the last photograph, this designer caught balance by focusing on jars in four similar colours: blue, yellow, white and clear. Rather than grouping similar colours together, spread them out to create an equilibrium between these items.


7. Intersperse short items with tall products. Even if your items don’t necessarily take a theme amongst themselves, you can still create a thoughtful, balanced presentation by concentrating on the size and height of things. Complement shorter, lighter things with taller, thicker things and vice-versa, varying their placement throughout the shelves.

Switch Collaborative

8. Mirror the shelves but don’t mirror the contents. If you have mirrored shelves across a space, as in this example, change every shelf’s display while using the same general theme. The very same things have been used to meet those shelves, some of the novels turned face-forward, but since every shelf display is a bit different, they feel attached, interesting and certainly balanced.

Susan Diana Harris Interior Design

9. Leave spaces empty. As in art course, look closely at the negative space; sometimes it is precisely where balance is located. This shelving unit is striking in itself; the designer improved the balance by placing a similar object intermittently throughout, leaving the remainder empty so the device’s architectural presence can be the focal point.

InHouse Design Studio

10. Add color to select areas of your bookshelf. Add an excess element of balance by painting the backdrop of different areas of your bookshelf. Fill out the painted areas with items different than the remainder of the shelving unit. It becomes even more visually interesting whilst creating balance.

Blue Tangerine Art

11. Contain glass. Glass fills up space without consuming much visual volume. It is a great complement in shelving units in which only a touch of something is required to maintain balance, allowing this art to steal the show.

Collections: Create Art With the Things You Love
Punch Your Shelving

See related