Shelf Decor for Every Style: Tips for Personalizing Your Space

15 May 2023 |

Do you have trinkets and items on your shelves that do not feel like they belong? Are you fed up with how your space looks and want to elevate your shelf decor?

Wall shelf decor can feel daunting, especially if you enjoy collecting trinkets, books, and accessories. Here is everything you need to know about shelf decor to get your dream #shelfie.

Eliminate Junk

One of the first tips for shelf decor is to get rid of as much clutter as possible. Think about everything on your shelf, and if you need to, go “Marie Kondo” on as many items as possible.

When you reduce clutter, you also gain a lot of head space to come up with creative organizational designs. The key is to ensure your items are well-curated and are exactly what you want to have on your shelves.

You should review the trinkets you have to determine whether you have any personal attachment toward them. Have you accumulated a lot of little things just for the sake of display?

Some things are not worth being stored out in the open. You can pull your things down from the shelf to sort them out. Remember that you do not need to clutter everything on shelves when they can be placed in cabinets.

Buy Items Slowly and Thoughtfully

The best part about shopping for wall shelf decor is the chance to let your imagination run free. Instead of making a one-off bulk purchase, you can browse websites regularly to curate your accent pieces over time.

This will allow you to collect items over time that speak to you and complement the other special treasures in your home.

Remember that the items you buy do not need to be expensive. You can find all sorts of unique items that will give your shelves the elegant boost you want.

Incorporate Books

When shopping for shelf decor, think about books as decoration, especially if you are an avid reader.

Grab your favorite titles to display them on your shelves. When guests come over, you can use your books to start a conversation. With books included in your shelf decor, you give folks visiting your space a quick glimpse into your passions and hobbies. Your books can tell people you love cooking, traveling, gradening, and more!

The best part of this design strategy is the shopping adventure! Going to your local bookstore or favorite thrift shop to find beautiful and budget-friendly titles can be fun and inspiring.

Book Positioning

Now that you are ready with some books to design your shelf, you should organize the titles you want to display. It is always best to choose interesting books to catch people’s eye when they visit.

It helps to stack four or five books horizontally. Then you can top them off with a vase, sculpture or a favorite tchotchke. You can also place books vertically between beautiful bookends that provide function and add personality to your shelves.

A table with a gray bowl full of felt pods next to a vase on a pile of books.


Color Is Up To You

Do you have a lot of books, trinkets, or accessories that are the same color? You could group them together for a monochromatic look (for example, the gray shelf above) or spread the color throughout your space.

Regarding shelves in your home, you want to show off your personality. Do not be afraid to randomly arrange colors around according to your tastes.

Use Some Paint

Maybe your shelves have faded or discolored from the sun, don’t go with new furniture in your space, or are a boring white.

In this case, it helps to get your hands on a bucket of paint if you are not thrilled with the current look of your shelves.

Even if you decide to leave the trim of your shelves a more neutral color, you can let your imagination run wild by painting the back walls a different color. It is also worth considering a bright color to embrace a bold look.

The best part is that getting shelves painted should not cost a lot of money. You can do the painting yourself if you do not want to hire a professional.

However, you can save time and money by picking the right colors before shopping for paint. Choosing colors for shelves can seem daunting because there are so many choices.  Use the colors of your walls and room space to help you decide which shelf color would best suit your home.

Remember that your shelves do not need to be the same color throughout your home. You have the freedom to paint the shelves in any way you like to suit different rooms.

Incorporate Some Art

Nothing beats artwork if you want to decorate your shelves in the most colorful way. Artwork is a great way to draw attention to your shelves, especially if you have built-ins.

It helps to layer a few pieces of art along your stacks of books. Remember, you do not need to have a specific medium or theme.

You can simply set a framed black-and-white picture on a shelf and use another shelf for some abstract, colorful art.

Having artwork or photographs on your shelves is an excellent way to fill the empty spaces with items that make a big impact.

This is an opportunity for you to showcase what you love. So, do not be afraid to add your favorite artwork to add personality to your shelves.


Rearrange Your Shelf

Hunting for wall shelf decor is never a one-day job. You will always find yourself looking for new ideas to decorate your shelves, especially as your style evolves.

The colors you enjoy now may not be the same ones you will love ten years from now. The beauty of putting up shelves is that you can easily transform the look at any time.

You may bring home new pieces that you want to display in the future, or some items on your shelves now won’t bring you joy in the coming years. Don’t be afraid to change your shelves as often as you like!

Get Your Shelf Decor Today

Remember that curating shelf decor is an ongoing process that should be something you enjoy. Explore the Submaterial shop to browse small sculptures, wall art, and mirrors made from natural and sustainable materials that might be perfect for your shelves.