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We have all seen homes in magazines where the shelves and bookcases in each room seem to have the perfect combination of items/ colours / tones… but how do they do it?

You want your home to reflect your personality and the items to tell a story about who you are. However it needs to look curated- not messy and crowded.

We are going to let you in on some styling secrets. With a few simple tricks on what items to use and how, your shelves will be “shelfie” ready in no time!

Here are our ACCESS SKETCH Tips on how to style the perfect shelf.

1. Start with large items first. Use the large items to build up layers on your shelves. Large books, vases, jugs work well. Using height creates visual interest.

2. Artwork! It looks great and doesn’t need to be expensive, it can be an oil painting from the op-shop with the dated looking frame removed. Or a bright piece of your children’s artwork in an inexpensive Ikea frame. Paintings just sitting on shelves rather than hanging adds a great background. Adding photographs in frames makes it more personal and less like a gallery.

2. Grouping and odd numbers. Arrange your items in groups. This way they have a far greater impact. Use groups of books either horizontally or vertically. When grouping objects, group them in odd numbers like 3 or five rather than even numbers.

3. Add greenery. Plants are the best accessory in your home; not only do they look great but they also keep the air healthy. Choose plants that are hardy and grown specifically for indoors. Cascading plants look great on shelves and give the shelf a more organic look.

4. Neutral tones or choose a colour palette. Shelves that have a consistent colour always look great and less cluttered. This is also a great way of narrowing down the selection of items to include.

5. Varying sizes and a good mix of objects. You want your shelves and bookcases to represent your personality. Include personal items like photographs, pictures, travel mementoes, things you have collected that mean something to you. A good mixture of textures and new vs old pieces works really well. Just stick to the same colour palette to tie it all in together.

6. Display your favourite pieces. It goes without saying but you will be looking at these shelves a lot, especially if they are in your living room, so make sure you choose items and objects that make you smile when you look at them.

7. Stand back. Styling is as much about editing and what you don’t display as it is about what you add. It is a process, so stand back and look at it from a distance and keep playing with the layout. Think of your shelves like scales, they need to balance; so make sure they look symmetrical and balance from left to right and top to bottom.

8. Have fun and change them up. You don’t need to put everything you love on the shelves at the same time. Change the items each season or every couple of months ( or weeks if you are super keen; ).

TAG us at @access.sketch and show us your SHELFIE!



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