Happy Valentine’s day, beautiful people! I have created a little gift for you, a FREE printable of a lovely quote in pink watercolour.
Print it for a photo frame, stick it up on your wall with washi tape, add it to your gallery wall, gift it as a framed print, use it as a gift topper or a notebook front cover… whatever takes your fancy, but please note this print is for personal use only. I also recommend that you download it to your computer before printing.
Shared a #shelfie on Instagram lately? We know what a joy pretty looking shelves are, right? They look stylish and interesting, give you endless styling opportunities, allow you to showcase your personality and design aesthetic, and are pretty much a work of art. But it can also be daunting to try to create the perfect shelfie.
Here are the tips and tricks that I follow when styling shelves which I hope will have you faffing happily on your way to a beautiful shelfie!
1. EDIT YOUR STUFF
I’m putting this first before you even start on your shelves because cluttered shelves are not where we’re going with this post. Anything that isn’t useful or beautiful or really sentimental needs to go. Be free of tatty tat. It’s very cathartic, I promise.
2. DECIDE ON A COLOUR PALETTE
This tip is really more for decorative shelves rather than your home library shelves which have lots of different spine colours, and I am not about to suggest you turn the spines in for a neutral look because I find this a ridiculous thing to do.
So if you do have lots of books, see Tip 4 for how you can make them look aesthetically pleasing.
If your shelves are more decorative rather than for housing a whole library of books, a limited colour palette really helps to give your shelves a cohesive and soothing look. You don’t have to be strict about it at all, a naughty colour pop never hurt anyone!
The fun part? You can change the vibe of your shelves when your mood desires by changing the colour palette. Case in point: Emily Henderson’s amazing shelves in her previous home styled in two very different ways:
3. START WITH BOOKS AND OTHER LARGE ITEMS
Some shelves are for housing book collections, while others are more decorative and hold a select few tomes along with objets d’art. Wherever your shelves fall on this spectrum, I find it a good idea to start with the books you want on the shelves, along with any pretty storage boxes and lamps if you have them. Adding these larger items first helps you to visually balance the layout of your shelves so you don’t have one side looking heavier than another. Stack some books vertically and others horizontally (by height). When it comes to styling, I treat a box as a horizontal stack of books. Vary the positioning of your books: some in the centre of a shelf, some to the side. Where you have a lots of books, try colour coding them. Pull your books to the edge of the shelf: this looks a lot smarter than having books at different depths.
4. ADD ART/PHOTO FRAMES
Large art at the back of the shelves layered with smaller art or objects in front of it add dimension to your shelves. Or you can be really bold with art and mount it on your shelves like in the image below:
5. ADD SMALLER ITEMS
Little decorative objects add so much interest to shelves. Let your pretty little things shine atop book stacks, in front of art, as bookends, etc.
Not compulsory by any means, but I find warm metallics are great for adding a touch of luxe to your shelves.
7. ADD GREENERY
You really can’t beat the life and movement that a house plant brings to a shelf! Succulents or trailing plants work best on shelves where height is limited. You can also try a little vase filled with flowers or leafy branches.
8. DISPERSE COLOUR
Make sure the main colours in your palette are dispersed throughout your shelves (unless you’re going for a colour-coded look with your books as seen in Tip 4). This helps to balance the overall look and also helps the eye to travel across the shelves.
9. LAYER AND VARY HEIGHTS
Layer by placing larger items behind and smaller ones in front. Play with heights: position your decorative objects in a triangular or mountain range formation; raise smaller objects by placing them on books or boxes. Whatever you do, stay away from symmetry.
10. WHITE SPACE
There are some designers who advocate leaving no white space at all, but I’m an advocate of less is more, and I think white space allows your eyes to rest between visual stimuli, making your shelves look more soothing.
These tips are not just for shelves, you can apply these principles to console or mantel styling too. It always takes me a bit of, er, faffing, before I’m happy with my shelves, so don’t be afraid to play around and experiment with different looks. Most importantly, have fun with your styling! Do you have any tips for shelf styling? Do share them in the comments!
Art is a key element in giving your home personality, yet finding beautiful art for your walls that doesn’t cost a small fortune can be tricky, so I thought I’d run a series on this blog on how to source affordable art. As it’s the start of the year, let’s start with art calendars, and I don’t mean the cheaply made glossy paper versions you find at your local stationer’s.
A few years ago, I bought a large calendar published by Taschen featuring Edward Lear’s parrots. I was blown away by the quality of the Italian art paper and vibrancy of the prints. The calendar cost me £9.99 from HomeSense and for that price, I got 12 great sized prints of stunning birds. I’d have been happy to pay that price for one print, let alone twelve!
I know Taschen have also produced large wall calendars featuring the works of Gustav Klimt, Frida Kahlo and Vilmorin’s Vegetable Garden (very popular on Etsy!), although I don’t know what they’ve published for 2017. If you google “Taschen large wall calendar” and come across one with art you like at a good price, I’d suggest you add it to your basket pronto because they’re very hard to come by! It’s also worth checking out your nearest HomeSense for arty treasures.
Unsurprisingly, the Rifle Paper Co.’s 2017 Bon Voyage calendar, featuring illustrations of cities, seems to already have sold out at all the UK stockists but if you like it, you can still order it from their website.
A recent discovery for me is Juniqe whose 2017 calendars are so good! If you’ve browsed Pinterest or Instagram for any length of time, you’ll surely recognise the work of Ruben Ireland…
Source: @mavendolls on Instagram via Inside Out Magazine
So what would you say to twelve Ruben Ireland prints for just a few quid each? Yup, you guessed it, a calendar with Ruben Ireland prints perfect for framing! Juniqe have this calendar in 2 great sizes so take your pick.
That’s not all. Juniqe have several more to choose from, one of my favourites being the Leigh Viner calendar –
If you haven’t already hopped over to Juniqe, I don’t know what you’re waiting for!* Go check out all their other gorgeous calendars and arty things.
Do you know of any other brands producing gorgeous arty calendars?
Hello lovely people. Hope your Christmas plans are coming along well and you’re in full happy festive mode. I’m halfway with wrapping presents and the Christmas dinner has been planned. Next on the list is figuring out which festive treats to make over the next couple of days to keep the carbolicious flow going! If you’re looking for sweet inspiration too, I’ve created a scrummy looking pinboard called “Christmas yummies” which you can find on my Pinterest. These are just some of the scrummy things you’ll find on there –
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year everyone! Hope you have a wonderful holiday! xxx
There are 36 sleeps until Christmas. Have you started decorating? Or at least thinking about it? 🙂 Last year, I was inspired by alternative Christmas trees and posted a roundup of them here. This year, I’m finding myself drawn to chic, modern wreaths which actually give a great excuse to get decorating well before December, because the simplicity of these wreaths makes them a lovely addition to autumnal and winter decor. These wreaths are not just for Christmas, and they’ll look lovely hanging anywhere in your home or on your front door!
Will you be crafting any festive decorations this year? For lots more creative Christmas decor ideas, CLICK HERE.