Friday 3 February 2012

Arranging my bookshelves

My husband’s preferred decorating style tends towards the minimalistic and uncluttered. He keeps very few things of sentimental value and finds it easy to let go of personal mementoes. On the other hand, I am very much a documenter of memories and experiences, and although I by no means keep everything I do like to hold onto some souvenirs and keepsakes. Although I also like an uncluttered look, I do enjoy having things around which express my personality. 

My bookcases are a place where I can store both my books, and also keep and display a few of the things which remind me of different phases of my life. I used to own a lot of books, but with the purchase of a Kindle I have reduced their number drastically. Books have always been rather fluid possessions of mine, and I find it easy to pass them along once I’ve finished them.

When sorting out my bookshelves in the new house I was under strict instructions as to what was allowed to be out on display, and I’m very happy with the arrangement that I’ve come up with. I don’t claim to be an interior designer, but one of my Pinterest boards is bookshelves and I have noticed that the bookshelves that I like to look at are those which contain a variety of different items, with varying heights, shapes and positioning of the books and items.

Picture of my bookshelves

They are two Ikea Billy bookcases. Along the top and scattered about are a lot of old books which have been passed down from my parents and Grandparents on both sides. The Enid Blyton books in particular have been read over and over. I don’t have a huge amount of fiction left, mainly those books which are either not yet available for the Kindle or copies that I particularly like. Next to the travel books is a big basket which contains my collection of leaflets and brochures of places that I’ve visited. I like looking through these from time to time.

Reference books are along the bottom, along with some teenage albums from the 70’s and 80’s – a bit before my time as a teenager but I love reading through them and seeing how teenage life has changed over time. The strange sculpture on the bottom left shelf is the only piece of 3D art remaining from my Art GCSE. The tin postbox contains old and foreign coins and one of the bowls contains pretty marbles and stones which Harry likes playing with. I am also loving my button tin which I received as a Christmas present. I don’t have a massive button collection but the box came with some pretty ones and I’m looking forward to building it up (for the children to play with of course).

There are several photos of me and my husband. We don’t have many printed out of the children, in fact I don’t think that there are any of Mia yet…probably something that should be remedied! Most of the storage on the shelves is also from Ikea. Ikea really can’t be beaten for storage, and everything fits everything else perfectly. The ornaments on these shelves are the only ones that I have really as this is the only place that I display things.

These bookshelves contain all the books that I own, and looking at the picture I can see how few I do actually have! I’ve realised that most of these books have been kept for either reference or sentimental reasons, as I do most of my reading electronically. I must admit thought that the top right hand shelf has a hidden section behind it, with a whole shelf of older child/teenage books. My excuse is that I’m saving them to pass onto Harry and Mia!

Maybe the contents are a bit scruffy and battered, but I do love my bookshelves.

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