We all have books that carry special personal memories. Isn’t it interesting how we can remember how we obtained most books in our library. Maybe if we look back to see what kind of books we purchased during our lifetime, we can see how they resonate with our own path in life. There was a phase when I bought books on health and child development. Then there was a time during our early years of marriage when my husband kept buying me cookbooks. I guess he saw all the beautiful photographs of the appetizing food and wanted me to cook those dishes for him. That was probably his subtle way telling me what he wanted to eat! Right now, I’m into all these motivational books…hmmm… is that telling me something? It may be fun to get know yourself and others by just observing what is on their bookshelf!
Yes, books are wonderful, but they do take up a lot of space and it’s nice to have them organized. Bookshelves are useful pieces of storage to help you accomplish this. Many times, we just place books on the shelves and forget about it. because we feel the job is done. However, if you go one step further in organizing, you can create a visually pleasing shelf that will look less chaotic and will bring about a sense of calm.
Let’s create a system that will make your bookshelf look visually pleasing as well as functional. The word functional is the important part. When your bookshelf is visually pleasing using only one variable such as color or size to categorize, you may run into problems. Yes, it does look great visually, but you have no way of remembering where each book is without a functional system to find a book. Inevitably, this will cause stress, not calmness. Another point to consider is the extent or your library. Now, obviously, if you have to do research and need a large library, you must categorize by author to make the system work. Here we are really trying to work with our personal library system in our home.
Where to begin?
First, assess your book inventory. How many books do you have and ask yourself if you really need to keep them all. Can some be donated, sold, shared with others or just given away? Do some have sentimental value? Sort through all of them and make a decision whether to keep them or not. We all know what is important to us and if you have any doubt what to do, then I suggest you keep it until you are ready to make the decision.
Once you have sorted through your inventory, the next step is to categorize them. You can do this by subject or type, such as; art, history, heath, fiction, non- fiction coffee table book, business, etc. Now, that everything is in piles, see how many of each category you have. Is your bookshelf large enough to hold them all? If not, why not store some in boxes instead of having them all on display.
Now you are ready to organize them on your shelf! Remember to try and keep those in the same category together. Next, organize by size or if you like, color. Big to small, small to big, make waves, do what you like but most important, create a pattern of some sort. If one category has only a few books, you may want to place them on it’s side, instead of upright.
Once you are done, you will feel good about what you accomplished and every time you glance at your books, you will also feel calm and good about yourself, because the bookshelf is visually pleasing and organized! Good job!