Bookshelves: To Style or Not to Style?

I am quite certain this question has a long-standing and controversial history in the design world. I am honestly a bit tired of seeing all the styling of bookshelves in every blog, magazine, and journal I come across. This is not to say I do not enjoy a well-styled bookshelf, but it's just maddening for someone like me who is a writer and married to a writer. We have nine bookshelves and they are all filed with books! Books are stacked horizontally and others are vertical. We cram them in there!

Apartment Therapy did an amazing round up of floor to ceiling bookshelves. What I love about these images are the abundance of books! Sure I supposed they are still "styled" but they feel organic and they are not loaded down with nic-nacs and trinkets.

What do you all think? Do you prefer a wall of books or a more edited shelf mixed with objects and books?


  1. I really like the second picture where the books are arranged by the color of their spines. I remember a photo spread in Martha Stewart Magazine where Kevin Sharkey had the entire wall of his office full of books organized this way. Really neat!

  2. I like it, too, but my husband who is a librarian does not! When he came home one weekend after being away and saw several bookcases organized by color, well, he was not happy! Tee hee. It's kind of a running joke!

    Just was at Luckett's this past weekend! Found some great stuff, as always, when I go there!