While each person has their own way of organizing a bookshelf, there are some quick ways to make sure it doesn't look too cluttered. Here are seven tips for keeping bookshelves looking orderly.
1. Invest in quality bookcases, especially if current ones are sagging.
2. Pull spines forward to the same line (a few centimeters away from the front edge of the shelf).
3. Avoid "decorating" the bookshelves with lots of little knickknacks. They will look cluttered.
4. Keep the heaviest books on the bottom shelf and other heavy ones on nonadjustable shelves. Heavy books are safer close to the ground, and having them there creates a more balanced look.
5. Adjust shelves to accommodate the height of the books. Bookshelves look better without too much "headroom" above books. Conversely, don't stack books (or anything else) on top of a row of books, as this makes a bookshelf look cluttered.
6. Leave a little free space on each shelf so that books aren't packed too tightly, but not so much that they lean.
7. As an economical alternative to built-ins, line a wall with several identical bookshelves painted to match the walls.
Quick Tip: Reach for the Heights
Lining a wall with shelves subtracts as little as fifteen inches from a room yet creates yards of storage for books and other possessions.
Flickr photo by richard winchell
For more cleaning tips, check out What's A Disorganized Person To Do?