Our dining room bookcase had gotten overrun with things, stuffed with books and odds and ends (some decorative, others just junk). It was time for a makeover. I didn't take a true before picture, but here's some of the stuff that came out of the bookcase. There was more on the floor and in the chairs. What a mess.
Based on how stuffed our bookcase had been before, I knew I wanted to leave plenty of visual space so the bookcase didn't look so heavy. It certainly needed to be functional, but we didn't have to put every book we owned on its shelves. I took Pinspiration from shelves like this. Sorry for the Pinterest pun, but I just can't help myself.
Organized, decorative, but still functional. I started out by adding in just the decorative items. The red basket on the top keeps a few office-type things (stapler, tape, extra pens/pencils) in check, and the smaller woven basket on the second shelf holds, for now, my collection of paint chips. Then an invite to my sister's art exhibit a few years ago, a picture of me and Mr. Great Indoors after he finished hiking part of the AT a few years ago (that's Appalachian Trail to you non-design blog readers-- not Apartment Therapy), a few magazine racks on the bottom that don't actually hold magazines (they're good for concealing ugly Yellow Pages books and other random things that don't fit any aesthetic).
Now that I had the decorative stuff set, it was time to add in the books. It really helped to have the anchors set before I added anything else, since it kept me focused on the visual space I was going for.
Don't get me wrong, there's still a ton of books in this set-up, but it's a lot less packed than it was. I relocated a few things, like my recipe books (which ended up in the kitchen-- imagine that), Chewy's hair clippers (now with all other Chewy-related stuff, like his treats), and a few books that didn't fit (back on our guest bedroom bookcase). On the top of this bookcase are two green IKEA boxes that store random stuff like extra address labels and calculators. Did anyone else end up with four different calculators after high school and college? I totally did.
The second shelf in all its glory.
Mr. GI looooves him some Clive Cussler, obviously. To give this larger shelf some height, I stacked up enough books on the back stack to scale most of the back shelf wall. Also, since I'm sure we'll be adding to the collection before too long, I'd better keep plenty of extra space. (P.S. Mr. GI submitted an adventuring picture to Clive Cussler's Facebook contest a few weeks ago, and he got a shout out from the author himself!)
Did you notice that the bookcase is roughly color sorted? I tend to think bookcases look more cohesive that way. I'm not anal enough, however, to sort things exactly by shade or size. Then they look a little too cohesive for my tastes.
This whole project was brought on by the fact that I hadn't dusted the bookcase in
six months a little while, and for a thorough dusting I'd rather take everything out instead of just dusting the edges of the shelves. If you're wondering, we got our bookcase here.
Who else did some weekend house cleaning?