Perhaps you have a tiny home and no designated place for books, or maybe you’re just looking to make more space and go minimalist. If you just can’t bring yourself to invest in a kindle and you enjoy the charm of paper books being present in your home, there’s a common issue that all bibliophiles share: figuring out a way to store copious amounts of books in your home. Oh, and make them look nice too.
To maximize your home’s space and minimize your literature’s footprint, make sure to use all the ledges in your house, which can double as shelves. The space beneath your staircase is also an untapped DIY resource for creating a full-on library without sacrificing any square footage.
Or, you can forget shelves altogether and stack books in an artsy and eye-catching way, even color-coding for an attractive aesthetic. You can even repurpose your hall closets and add built-in shelves, creating a mini library rather than a place to hoard seasonal junk. But if you’re looking for a little extra assistance and structure for those accumulating piles, we’ve got your back.
Some bookcases are clunky, and many wall shelves don’t hold your desired volume, acting as a piece of useless wall decor instead. Make the most of your home’s space with our vetted hacks and product suggestions. While not all of these items were made specifically for books, we discovered that they’re a favorite for many DIY masters when it comes to creative book storage ideas.
Homfa Industrial 5-Tier Ladder Shelf
You can always make this a DIY project with an actual ladder and some paint, but we love this industrial-looking ladder bookshelf on Amazon that fits with a range of styles. Unlike some ladder shelves with a significantly wide base, this one makes a relatively small impression that still allows for plenty of storage. It has an expensive and rustic look that will add a classy feel to any home – one reviewer says it “really brings together a room.”
KMwares Rustic Grey Wood Storage Crates, Set of 5
Wooden crates are one of the most versatile book storage ideas out there. They have an undeniably rustic look and can be stacked, drilled to a wall, or placed on surfaces and shelves. These come in beautifully washed-out gray and feature open handles. They’re sturdy but lightweight and can be used in a range of DIY projects. You can even build an entire wall unit bookcase like this tutorial by Tara Michelle Interiors.
Gray Twill Laminated Wood Shelf, 72 in. L X 12. In D
Forget hallway art – make the most of your hallway space and add a chic shelf to display that gorgeous literature. Sometimes, just a single, extra-long shelf in your home’s corridors can transform it from a simple passageway to the most magical hallway library that will wow you and any guests coming over. If one shelf isn’t enough, add another below or above. Home Depot’s durable, stain-resistant laminated shelf mimics the look of gray wood and clocks in at 72 inches. Just add some bookends and voila!
Muso Wooden Walnut Bookends
With many open-concept book shelves and display, there’s a constantly frustrating aspect: your books constantly falling over. To keep them up (and prevent future accidents) invest in a high-quality pair of bookends. Constructed from solid walnut wood, these rectangular Muso bookends are handmade and polished with wax oil for a sophisticated shine. They’re made for holding books well and preventing them from toppling over. One buyer says: “They were just what we were looking for.”
Melannco Floating Square Cube Shelves, Set of 3
Not only do these cubic floating shelves add a modern look to any home, but these cubby-style shelves are known to be deeper and spacious than other kinds of shelves, offering versatility and a clutter-free look.You can create a geometric pattern, line them up horizontally, or stack them vertically. The options are endless, and the result always looks streamlined no matter what. Plus, they’re very easy to install when compared to the assembly of more daunting bookshelves.
Simple Houseware 3-Tier Metal Utility Rolling Cart
At first glance, this might just look like a bar cart. But it’s so much more than that. Not only does this clever hack allow you to move your reads wherever you’d like, but in the right color, it can look like an accent piece, and if you ever do decide to donate those books, this metal utility cart can be used for other purposes. Available in white, black, and a range of statement colors, its multiple levels let you organize according to genre, while also allowing you to store other office or crafting supplies.
SRIWATANA Vintage Corner Bookcase
Corners are fantastic for storage, but it can be hard to find the right piece of furniture to fit precisely in there. That’s why we recommend this fan-shaped, multi-tiered corner bookcase, described as vintage-looking and constructed from metal and wood. The shelving unit is available to buy in 3, 4, or 5 tiers, and features matte black iron tubes with a bulb-shaped bulb for added elegance. Multiple 5-star reviews sing its praises on looks and “the easiest assembly I could’ve asked for”, as one customer puts it.
COSTWAY Bamboo 5-Tier Shelf
This open-concept room divider adds an organic and natural feel to any room. Rather than placing a solid block to break up the room entirely, this bamboo storage rack lets you stack books and give your plants (or any other desired items) a designated home. For those looking to make a plastic-free choice and perhaps divide a living room and dining room in an open-concept place, Costway offers a competitive choice that’s worth a second glance.
WGX Design For You Industrial Wall Mount Hung Bracket Shelf
Make the most of your space and don’t give up any more square footage than you need to. If floor to ceiling storage for your books sounds like more than you need, consider a shelving unit that utilizes the emptiest space in your house or apartment: the ceiling! High perimeter shelves, otherwise known as overhead shelving, often consist of fixtures hanging directly from the ceiling. This one by WGX designs uses a pipe shelf bracket, and reviewers appreciate the seller’s customer services and openness to customizing the order to fit your needs.
84 in. Dry Oak Wood 18-Shelf Standard Bookcase with Adjustable Shelves
If your book collection is so large it needs to be organized by genre, consider a full wall bookcase like this one, which can be pressed against any wall to maximize floor space. Just like our room divider pick, this can be used to make one room feel like two separate areas, with a more opaque result than open concept alternatives. With a beautiful dry oak finish, this shelving unit spans a whopping 84 inches, and features adjustable shelves.
VASAGLE 8-Tier Tree Bookshelf
Make your bookshelves double as decor with this geometric bookcase, which is often referred to as a book tree. These handsome, rustic wooden shelves are a popular pick, but this model also comes in a darker walnut tone as well as white, which works well with Scandinavian-style decor. With 8 tiers, you can fit a good amount of books on this branch-style structure, which can also house magazines, video games, and movies if you have extra room to spare.
Allewie Queen Platform Bed Frame with 4 Storage Drawers
Upgrade your box spring with this multifunctional platform bed frame, featuring 4 built in storage drawers. Since you probably already have a dresser or wardrobe, these shelves can hold all of your books, while causing zero clutter. With a diamond-stitched, built in headboard, this upholstered beauty requires no box spring, and can keep all your home library hidden away. With a sturdy wooden slat support system and a metal frame to match, this is a multifunctional piece of bedroom furniture that doubles as a secret book storage spot.