8 Creative Ways to Decorate with Books

Shop your bookshelf to make these charming DIY art, tables and more

Coffee Table

Rima Campbell/Apartment Therapy

Create a custom coffee table using a framed piece of glass and a stack of book hardcovers as legs. Just add or remove books to change the height. A few accent pieces, like this killer flower-and-candlestick combo, give a polished (but not fussy) finish.

Get the how-to at Apartment Therapy.

Wall Art

Paper & Stitch

Well. This might be the most creative way we’ve seen to dress up a bland home office. Just pull out a handful of your prettiest hardcover books, attach them to the wall with Velcro strips and -- presto -- instant art.

Get the how-to at Paper & Stitch.

Side Table

Justin Officer/Design Sponge

A bunch of your favorite colorful coffee-table books double as the perfect side table when artfully stacked between two chairs. Top with a monochromatic floral arrangement for extra oomph.

Get the how-to at Design Sponge.

Succulent Planter

Green Wedding Shoes

This decorative succulents planter is a clever way to get some extra mileage out of all those books you haven’t touched since college. Wednesday of Wednesday Custom Design hollowed out the inside of and sealed it with Modge Podge and plastic wrap then added soil and plants. 

Get the how-to at Green Wedding Shoes.


Design Every Day

For the serious book lover, there’s this amazing headboard from Design Every Day, fashioned from several open books nailed to a wood backing (Hint: use double-sided tape to keep page open). Extending the books slightly over the backing gives the dreamy illusion that they're floating.

Get the how-to at Design Every Day and get more DIY headboard project ideas here.

Staircase Decoration


Proof that the best ideas are sometimes right under your nose: Turn a staircase with extra-long steps into a place to store and display books. For maximum impact, stick with tones in contrasting colors, like these black and red hardcovers.

Get the how-to at Dezeen.

Tchotchke Risers

So Love That

Show your tchotchkes some love by placing them on top of a stack of books, suggests So Love That. Using hardcovers as DIY risers is also a no-fail way to add visual interest to an otherwise ho-hum tablescape.

Get the how-to at So Love That.

Rainbow Shelving


Colorful and organized? We’re officially in love with this ROY G BIV-inspired bookshelf. To get the full-on rainbow effect, simply organize books by color.

Get the how to at ROY G BIV.

Ellen Sturm Niz is an editor and writer working, parenting, and living in New York City. Follow her on Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, and Google+.

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