Decorating with Books

An Erté statue of a woman in a gold 1920s style gown with a cheetah by her side in front of a collection of books in burgundy leather with gold accents

Recently I decided that I really needed to get over and start dealing with my storage unit before someone calls Hoarders and blows the whistle.  I’ve been meaning to go through everything there and start getting rid of as much as I can.  I mean, it’s been in storage for years so the majority of it probably isn’t anything I need to keep at this point.  But, my collection of leather-bound books are actually there, and are not anything I want to part with.  I made a deal with myself that if I brought these from storage into the house, I would in return get rid of some books at the house.  Let me tell you, I made the employees at Half Price Books work for their money that day.  I brought in several big shopping bags worth of books to sell.  And as a reward, I now have a good majority of my pretty leatherbound books sitting on the shelves at home.  I was so thrilled at having “rescued” them from storage, that I thought I’d do a post about decorating with books.  Since I’ve already covered Decorating with Quilts, this seemed like another worthy topic.

a shelf of leatherbound books in reds, blacks, browns, greens, blues

You can see in the photo at the top of the post that I’ve used my set of Tales of the Arabian Nights as a backdrop for an Erté sculpture in the deep bookcase in our bedroom.  I love how the gold plays off the deep red of the leather.

And while those books are acting as more of a decorative element, you can see others that fit well within my bookcases in the living room.  And I’ve also used them in small vignettes throughout the house too.  Here they are with another Erté sculpture on top of a tall chest of drawers.

An Erté statue of a woman in a gold 1920s style gown sitting on top of two burgundy leatherbound books with gold accents

And not all the books I decorate with are my nice leather-bound books.  I absolutely love this collection of books on cigar art.  They sit on a shelf next to two decorative cigar boxes, as I’ve shown you in my living room makeover post.

a book shelf with a stack of books on cigars and a wooden bowl sitting on top

The possibilities really are endless, and it’s a great way to actually make use of all those books you’ve got in your library.  A way to add a bit of personality to a room with a well-worn copy of a favorite book, a stack of art books on a table, even a collection on a particular subject.  I’m so thrilled to have my pretty leather-bound books with me at home now, and it was a good compromise to get rid of other books I’m not so in love with to make room for them.

2 thoughts on “Decorating with Books”

  1. Legallyblondemel

    Lovely, lovely, lovely photos & design concept. You’ve inspired me to do better with my book buying (says the girl currently amassing a small army of Kindle/iPad buys). I’d like to start collecting my favorite reads in hardcover, if not available in leatherbound, editions.

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