A bookshelf isn’t just for storage. It’s a decorative feature that can be completely stunning if styled properly. The key phrase? “Styled properly.” That’s because so many of us are guilty of not thinking of the way books sit on the shelf, or even about replacing (or even repainting) the bookcase. For inspiration, we’ve gathered five different designers who created gorgeous home libraries that’ll make you see the potential of those shelves.

Designer: Nathan Turner

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Why We Love It: The lilac color unifies the built-in shelves with the wall, making a cohesive backdrop that doesn’t distract from the art or decor.

About The Designer: After graduating with a business degree from St. Mary’s College of California, Nathan lived in France and Italy where he studied art history, languages, and worked on his culinary skills. After moving back to the U.S., Los Angeles specifically, he combined his love for design, travel, and food, and created his shop. His work has been featured in Architectural Digest, Vogue, Elle Decor, House Beautiful, and many more.

Shop Pieces Inspired By This Look:

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Acrylic Swirl Round Table, Amsterdam Side ChairGold Sphere SculptureMandalay Bamboo Game Table Base 

Designer: Will Wick

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Why We Love It: Again, it’s all about great color. Here, a wall of shelving looks anything but stuffy when painted a fabulous shade of deep teal. The shelves themselves hold a focused, edited assortment of books and objets d’art. We also love how Will hung a piece of art on the shelf itself.

About The Designer: With his timeless, bold, and decorative aesthetic, Will is a designer that you know as soon as you see his designs. Will’s work has been featured in Architectural Digest, House Beautiful, and many others.

Shop Pieces Inspired By This Look:

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Black Raindrops Painting, Malachite Pyramid PaperweightsIndonesian Teak Lidded Box, Ethiopian Tombon Sculpture

Designer: Kristin Jackson/Hunted Interior

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Why We Love It: Though the dark color of the shelves almost allows them to fade in the background, the shiny lacquered texture gives them a statement-making presence. The room’s other colors were chosen to stand out against the gorgeous deep navy for an unforgettable result.

About The Designer: Hunted Interior was founded by designer and blogger Kristin Jackson in 2001. With years of experience as a hotel designer, it is no surprise that she knows how to create a luxurious space. Kristin has worked with Target, Home Depot, HGTV, Better Homes and Gardens, and many more.

Shop Pieces Inspired By This Look: 

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Abstract Painting, Oriental Flower UrnChinese Planter, Table Top 54321 Sculpture

Designer: Foley and Cox

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Why We Love It: The all-white walls in this space make everything stand out. Instead of the typical books, the shelves show off an array of beachy accessories that nod to the coastal location of the home.

About The Designers: With experience designing residential, yacht, and private aircraft interiors, it is no surprise Mary Foley and Michael Cox know how to create a luxurious space, and this interior is no different. They’ve been featured in Architectural Digest, Town & Country, New York Home, and many more.

Shop Pieces Inspired By This Look:

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Natural Star Bendo Root Sculpture, Blown Glass HurricaneWoven BasketHand-Sculpted Coffee Tree

Designer: Lindsey Coral Harper/LCH Interiors

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Why We Love It: The natural wood texture offsets the vibrant hues within the room.

About The Designer: After creating LCH Interiors in 2007, Lindsey Coral Harper has been featured in House Beautiful, Southern Living, Charlotte Home & Garden, as well as many more. Lindsey creates comfortable, personal, and welcoming spaces with bold patterns, texture, and colors. She is also the co-founder of Lambshop, an American-made, bespoke furniture and accessories line that was created in 2008.

Shop Pieces Inspired By This Look:

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Metal Chimney Sweeps, 19th-Century Burmese Barrel Top TrunkDecorative Bowl, Modern Hand-Blown Glass Vases 

1 Comment

  • Posted April 14, 2016
    by alana hay

    Love all of these. I am in the process of decorating a family room and wondering if I should paint bookshelves. Love Nathan’s coffee table. Where can I find a coffee table 60″ long 32″deep and 18 high. specifically want a glass top. Can I send in a picture?

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