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Well the day has finally come for me to show you how I styled the built-in bookshelves.  I will say I am not a stylist by nature.  I would much rather be building something than adding in the finishing touches.  I must have rearranged things about 1000 times each shelf.  My strategy was to keep rearranging it until I didn’t hate it.  HA!  I know some rules of styling but I threw the rules out the window and used what I loved and just tried to tie it all in together.  So hopefully I pulled it off.  My family thinks its awesome, especially the two marquee lights (the ampersand and the arrow).  Source list is at the bottom of the post.

styling shelves and bookcases

Before we start if you are wanting to see the entire built-in IKEA Billy Bookcases and Airstone Fireplace start here:

Family Room Makeover Part 1: Installing the IKEA Billy Bookcase Built-Ins

Family Room Makeover Part 2: Framing out the Fireplace

Family Room Makeover Part 3: Building a Hollow Rustic Mantel

Family Room Makeover Part 4: AirStone Fireplace Makeover

Family Room Makeover Part 5: Finishing Touches

To pull this off I shopped from all over my house and grabbed a few cans of spray paint to make everything match.  It is always fun to see something that hasn’t been used get taken out of storage and attacked with spray paint.  Instantly it becomes new and front and center in my decor.

The yellow frame is a picture of when my kids were younger.  They are super tight and I love being reminded of their bond with each other.  The frame was given a coat of RustOleum Summer Squash to tie it in.  That little birdie is a bank I got years ago from Pier 1 Imports.

decorating shelves

One cheap trick is covering books with scrapbook paper.  It helps bring in color and hide books that don’t coordinate.  I also cheated and slid pieces of scrapbook paper in DVD and old VHS tape boxes.  Shhh….don’t tell anyone.

decorated shelves

The custom map was done by Sarah Dorsey Designs.  It is all the places we have lived since we got married. She will customized one for you for $6!

I am in love with this little light up arrow from Target!  They are sold out in many of the Targets but it lights up and turns off after 3 hours.  I turn it on every night.

decorated book case

More scrapbook paper covered books and DVD’s to add height to that side.

styling shelves

I love this verse.  Because it is ALWAYS something I need to work on.  Always. Did I say always? The End.

trust in the lord hand lettering

Sometimes you just need a tiny bit of height.  You can add books or even photo box tops to prop stuff up.  I find them at any craft store and I wait until they go on sale.  I paid $1.33 for some a couple of weeks back.

ikea book cases decorated decorated bookshelves

And here is a picture of the whole left side.

decorating with books

My grandfather made me this clock probably 7-8 years ago.  The time has come when Paw-Paw doesn’t get out in his wood shop anymore so I was grateful that a can of spray paint allowed it to come back into my decor.  And I gotta say it looks pretty fabulous in yellow, hopefully Paw-Paw agrees.

yellow clock

Last year I showed you how I made these oversized Scrabble pieces.  Such a simple project.  P.S.  I removed the tag off the ampersand – something I noticed as I was editing the pictures. DOH!


Changing out the color of the box top with some Krylon Coral Isle allowed just the little bit of coral I needed in that area.

styling shelves

Again my arrow obsession continues with these iron bookends from Painted Fox Treasures (they are only $26!).  They were originally red.  Since they were already so distressed, a sloppy coat of turquoise chalk paint and they fit in perfectly with my color scheme.

painted arrows

Can you also spy all of my blogger friends turned authors?  Not only do I love reading their books, they make beautiful decor!  And Charlottes Web is thrown in because it the book we are reading as a family right now.

arrow bookends

And here is the whole right side.  Can I just tell you how grateful I am I only had 8 shelves to decorate?  Without the doors on them it would have been styling overload for me!

coral blue and yellow accessories

The fabulous pillow on the black chair is from Deny Designs.  It is such a rad online place that allows artists to license their designs and then they make it into cool home decor for us to purchase.  The pillow is from the artist Sharon Turner, the design is Marrakech.

accessorizing shelves

And there you have it.  That wall is done – for a few weeks anyway.  Until Christmas decor reigns supreme.  Dang it.  I have to style it for Christmas?  Pffft we will see.

Source list left to right: Distressed Gray Box with Label Holder (Joann’s), Marquee Arrow (Target), Hexagon Box behind arrow (Hobby Lobby), Trust in the Lord gold foil print (Mandy England), Custom Map (Sarah Dorsey Designs), Faux Succulents Fetjka with white vase Oradd (IKEA), Driftwood Wreath (Home Goods), F scrabble letter (Infarrantly Creative), Ampersand Marquee (Michaels), Photo Box (Joann Fabrics & Crafts), Arrow Bookends (Painted Fox Treasures), Magazine Files Kassett (

And here are all the posts in this series for easy reference:

Family Room Makeover Part 1: Installing the IKEA Billy Bookcase Built-Ins

Family Room Makeover Part 2: Framing out the Fireplace

Family Room Makeover Part 3: Building a Hollow Rustic Mantel

Family Room Makeover Part 4: AirStone Fireplace Makeover

Family Room Makeover Part 5: Finishing Touches

Family Room Makeover Part 6: Styling the Built-ins

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  1. It looks great Beckie–and very you with all the color. I got a good chuckle from your covering the VHS/DVD tapes–clever and sneaky! I like styling, however, I am looking for the right look and then leave it alone! Luckily, I do not have many places to do this. I think too much stuff is just that–too much stuff!!!! Hey, do not worry about Christmas. I am not one to remove everything and replace with Christmas. If I may suggest…a bow on the wood wreath, a few sprigs of greenery with some berries in a shade that complements, some pinecones–perhaps glittered?? Sounding good? Just tuck it in around what you have. I think a little goes a long way. And I think I need the custom map. 🙂

  2. Those colors are fantastic!! Using the photo-box lids is brilliant, as is covering DVD cases in pretty paper! I’m going to have to borrow some of these ideas!
    For Christmas, that’s a tough one! I’ve never been fond of going all out for Christmas decorations in the first place, but just from this post alone, I can see whatever you end up with would be beautiful!

  3. Ha! You crack me up! I am honestly not a big seasonal decorator, and after all I went through to style those shelves, there ain’t no way I’ll be taking it all down! 😉 And, yes, I love all your ideas!

  4. Looks amazing.

    Can you give us an estimate on what it cost you to build the built ins and fireplace surround?

  5. Hi Craig, So glad you like it. Here’s a breakdown of the cost: $960 for the IKEA Billy bookcases and extensions, $30 in lumber for crown molding and baseboards, $500 in Airstone, and $20 for the mantel. Hope that helps!

  6. Those arrow bookends are a must have! Amazing! It like it’s telling you to expand your collection. We really love what you did with your bookshelf, Beckie. Keep up the good work.

  7. Look so good! I love watching your style, it is definitely more modern than my own. I am thinking of purchasing another bookshelves, I want it to be like yours. Thank you for sharing!

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