Monday, February 9, 2015

Home decor rule I'm breaking: unstyled bookshelves

I feel like this is the year that our attitude toward our home is really shifting. When we moved in 6 years ago, it was a starter home and we thought we would be moving on to something bigger. But we are coming to realize more and more that this is the home and neighborhood we want to raise our family in, even though the house isn't as big as we thought we would need with 4 kids (more on this later). With this new view of our home, we've (I've) really started making strides to turn it into everything we want. It's freeing, because instead of worrying about how things will affect resale value (ok, let's be honest, I've never been too concerned about that), we are just doing things we love, even though that means sometimes breaking all the home decor rules. Most rooms in my home do not look like a Pinterest board... but that's ok, because they make me smile every time I see them.
First up, my unstyled gigantic bookshelves.
I have posted about these several times.
That's because they're awesome and they deserve lots of recognition!
There are tons of tutorials on Pinterest about how to "style" bookshelves. That ain't never going to happen in our house because we have too darn many books.

And that's not all... there are more on the floor to ceiling bookshelves in our room. I know I could do a better job about arranging these books by color, or size, or splitting them into different sections, etc.... but we have a system. Jason agonizes over how these books are arranged, each section blending perfectly into the next, authors staying together, short stories with short stories and novels with novels. They are crazy and each shelf is stuffed with books, but we like it that way!

Last summer Helena asked Jason if he could measure her against the bookshelves. I said it would be ok, thinking he would discreetly mark with a ballpoint pen against the edge. Instead he scrawled "Helena, 6/19/14" in green sharpie across the whole thing. After that I decided our kids' height should be a work of art, so I used a gold paint pen to mark their height and doodled their names big and proud. 

I just put little bookshelf markers along every shelf a few months ago. It was hard to know how to label them, because like I said, our sections kind of flow into each other... we ended up with labels like "War, what is it good for?", "US Americans", "Americanarama", "Cowboys, past and present", "Paranormal teen romance", "INFINITE JEST", "Something clever", "Nerd", "Graphic Novels", "Ladies' book club", and "I love lamp". You'll have to come to the house to see what kinds of books fit in those sections.

Another thing... you will always find stacks of books on every shelf that haven't been reshelved yet. It sometimes drives me crazy because I like things neat and tidy and not cluttered, but we are a family of readers and we really read those books. Like, all the time. There are always several that are in rotation and so are just stuck on the edge of the shelves instead of "put away". 
So there you have it, the first of one of the many rules I am breaking as I decorate my house. Take away message: do what makes YOU happy in your house, and who cares what your neighbors, friends, relatives, strangers on the internet, or future realtor think!

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