How to Decorate with Books: Ideas for Chic and Easy Displays

Whether you’re a certified bookworm or a casual bookstore browser, it’s hard to deny the allure of a cool-covered book. And as annual lists touting the year’s top covers prove, we’re not alone in this. But what to do with all those cool-covered books you’ve snagged? To give you some ideas on how to keep those dapper jackets on full display, we’ve rounded up three ingenious ways to show off your reads!


Photo by Bjorn Wallander / OTTO

Coffee Table Time
An oldie but goodie, displaying your favorite books on a coffee table is a great way to not only show off their covers, but add some fuel to cocktail party convo. Keep a single stack on your table and rotate them at your leisure, or to maximize your showcasing pattern, create several stacks. The latter works especially well if you have a square or rectangular coffee table with a blocky profile.

Reinvent the Bookshelf
To riff off one of our favorite bookstore tricks, when styling shelving, try a combination of “facing and flushing.” Or said another way, pile in some of your books the normal way (with spines facing out), but leave gaps for others stacked in the opposite direction (with their covers showing). Stores use this method to display multiple copies of popular titles, but at home you can employ it to highlight those gorgeous covers like art. Just make sure to embellish with personal items like tiny travel souvenirs or framed photos to keep the look from straying too austere.

No-Mount Artwork
If you love the idea of staging your books like art, but would rather ditch the bookshelf altogether, try displaying them on floating shelving. Choose a few favorite reads to intersperse between pieces of framed art for a creative, just-left-of-perfect flair, or hang multiple shelves underneath one another to turn a bare wall into a library-worthy nook. We especially love the latter look when used in a kid’s room, where volumes of Babar and Eloise become gorgeous (and kid-friendly) artwork.


October 11, 2017

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