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Step-By-Step Shelfie Styling Guide

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Books. Decor. Candles. Knick Knacks. Art. Sculptures. Heirlooms. 
Sure, you’ve got everything you need to style your shelf or built-in, but, if you’re here, something tells us you’ve been scratching your head with where you should even begin.  

Luckily, styling shelving is one of the Parker Gwen teams’ favorite pastimes. But, we’ll admit - it’s also one of the trickiest.  

So, if you’re unsure of which item should go where and why we’re so glad you’ve found your way to this guide. It’s packed full with our design team’s best tips and tricks, so be sure to keep reading if you’re in need of a little styling help. 

STEP ONE: START FRESH

This may seem to be an unnecessary step to call out, but you’d be shocked at how many people we see daily to de-clutter and de-accessory a shelf before they begin styling. Our recommendation is to take off all accessories prior to starting your styling so that you’re able to see your shelf or built in as a blank slate.  

Psst.. it helps you to reduce tons of clutter, too! 


STEP TWO: GO BIG OR GO HOME



Our design team always starts their styling by choosing the big, impactful items first. Think a large vase, a piece of small artwork, lighting, or a big sculpture.  

The key is pulling out all of your large items, making sure they flow well with one another and then placing them in balanced positions throughout your built-in bookcase or shelves. We try to make sure that the items we choose are evenly distributed throughout the piece, so that no one area fully draws the eye in. 



STEP THREE: GROUP YOUR SMALLER ITEMS

Once your statement pieces are complete, we recommend grouping your smaller décor pieces, books, and accessories and styling them around your larger pieces. 


Things to remember:  

1. Items tend to look best when paired in odd numbers  

2. Colors should compliment each other

3. Remember to play with heights and widths of objects, not just locations

4. This is a great time to add family pieces like heirlooms, photos, or drawings

STEP FOUR: STEP BACK AND EVALUATE

Here’s the hardest part: Step back and take it in. Here are a few questions to help you evaluate:  

1. Does it look even throughout the shelves or is your eye drawn to one place?  
2. Do the colors of each piece you chose flow well together or is there an outlier?  
3. Do the shelves balance one another out or does one look a bit more cluttered than the rest?  

As you answer each of these questions, feel free to add or subtract items as you go.  

Psst… It never hurts to get an opinion from a friend or family member during this step, too!

Need some help finding items that will fill your new bookcase or update an old built-in? Be sure to stop by our décor collection to find the perfect items for your piece. 

And, if you use this guide to style the perfect “shelfie” make sure to tag us on Social Media using #ParkerGwen. 


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