Shelf Life

Shelf Life via

Ever since we moved into this “new” house of ours two years ago (our two year anniversary in this house is actually April 2 so EXACTLY two years, just about!), I’ve been nesting pretty consistently. Moving in, finding out I was pregnant, doing a girl nursery, renovating our upstairs, changing up Wilson’s room, changing up Lily Ryan’s room… It seems like I’ve always had a project going on!

One project I’ve halfway done about four times is doing our bookshelves in our living room. Why are bookshelves so hard?! After this most recent shelf redo, I think I am finally really happy with them so I wanted to share a little peek!

Shelf Life via

Shelf Life via

Shelf Life via

Shelf Life via

Shelf Life via

Shelf Life via

Shelf Life via

As a former design assistant, a design blogger (and reader of multiple design blogs), and a coworker to a bunch of super talented interior designers, I have had the opportunity to assemble a little list of tips when it comes to bookshelf design! Here’s a list of things that I think help make for some interesting bookshelves!

( one ) Organize books by color if you have a lot of books. It keeps things easier on the eye!

( two) Incorporate art

( three ) I once read that many of the best designed rooms include something new, something old, something black, and something shiny. I think using those same parameters on bookshelves is a good idea!

( four ) If you don’t like it, don’t use it! Too many people incorporate things into home design simply because they feel like they have to. This is something a designer would never approve! If it doesn’t work, then store it. Sell it. Give it away. Let someone else who actually likes it put it to good use!

( five ) Don’t be afraid to turn your books around to where the pages show rather than the spines.

( six ) Group some books vertically and some horizontally.

( seven ) Keep your color palette fairly simple.

I tried to keep things neutral with bits of blues/greens incorporated. I also loved popping in a little black and a little shine for some drama! Price likes that I incorporated a skull mount of his because this is actually a form of hunting trophy that we can both agree on! (And he has finally forgiven me for accidentally dropping that dude on the tile floor nose first and… shortening his nose… Oops!)

I did include one really tiny pop of loud color with the hand painted owl that we got on our trip to Barcelona several years back! I just love that little guy and he doesn’t do too much distracting, so there he sits! He just makes me happy and brings back memories of an awesome trip.

Shelf Life via

If you have any more tips on bookshelf design, I’m all ears! I’d love to hear!

And now seems like an appropriate time to plug my SummerHouse designers! If you can’t do bookshelves on your own (or just straight up don’t want to or don’t have time to), call a designer to help!! These girls are TRAINED in making your bookshelves look perfect. I highly recommend every single one of them!

Thank you so much for stopping by today! It means the WORLD!

OH! And I don’t know why it took me so long, but THE HIVE blog now has a Facebook page! I’d love if you’d like it 🙂 (Thanks in advance!!)



  1. Gillian March 31, 2017 / 3:07 pm

    They look SO good! I love all of the little details. <3

  2. Mel McLellan March 31, 2017 / 5:32 pm

    This looks so awesome! I want to be you when I grow up! 🙂

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