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How to Choose Shelving for Your Living Room

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Stylish shelving can serve many purposes in your living room. A wall shelf or bookshelf is an easy way to display some of your favorite decorative accessories and hardcovers, or it can act as a decorative piece of its own. No matter what you plan to use it, here's how to choose the best shelving for your space.

Find the Right Shelving:

  1. Take time to measure: Before you purchase shelving, it's wise to determine where it will be placed. Measure the space and determine how much of that area you would like the shelf to fill. Also, take note of nearby furnishings and architecture and choose a shelf to best accommodate the space.

  2. Show it off: Ask yourself what types of items you will display on your shelves. Heavier items or books require more substantial shelving that can support the weight. If you have just a few items you'd like to display, a wall or floating shelf may be your best option. Less invasive than a bookcase, wall shelf may also provide just the right amount of clutter relief for your living room. Delicate collectibles should be stored on a deep shelf or in a hutch with a protective case.

  3. Pick your style: If you're still working on creating a cohesive look for your living room, let a new bookcase become the focal point. A grounded bookcase can be a stylish focal point in an open room, while a large open-air shelving system can double as a room divider. Simple wall shelves can be a nice accent piece and are an easy way to showcase a few of your most-treasured heirlooms. Most shelving systems and bookcases are made of either wood or metal, or a combination of the two. Choose a finish that works best with your current decor. Deep mahogany wood works well in traditional spaces, while teak wood is a staple of mid-century modern design. Metal shelving and bookcases provide a great minimalist look and a combination of wood and metal complements both country and industrial-inspired decor.

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