I recently reorganized my bookcases because they were in desperate need of an uncluttering & unhaul. It was getting to the point where I was just stacking books up in front of the others and I had no more room for new books. I just couldn’t put it off any longer!
*I would like to preface this post to state that the pictures included in this post are poor quality. In my new house, my bookcases are located in a room that doesn’t get much natural lighting. I am currently looking into lighting options for photography purposes. If anyone has any insight, I’d love to hear it!
Since more room on my shelves wasn’t going to magically appear, this meant that I had to make the tough decision to let some books go. Picking and choosing which books to unhaul was NOT easy.
Which books did I decide to unhaul? Basically books I no longer have any interest in reading, books that were mediocre reads, and books I know I wont be rereading, even if I enjoyed reading them the first time around. Unfortunately I do not have unlimited space, so these books had to go. What do I do with the books I unhaul? I keep them in storage to use in my Little Free Library that sits in my front yard. I like to spread the joy around 🙂
This whole process of unhauling and reorganizing my bookcases got me thinking. How does everyone organize their bookshelves?
8 Ways to Arrange Your Books…
Some chose to organize their books alphabetically by author’s name or even the title. Organizing books alphabetically is probably the most practical method of organization. The biggest positive of this method is the ease of locating books on the shelves. This would probably be a beneficial method of organizing books for those who have an overwhelming amount of books and that like to reread or loan them out to others.
» By Genre
Some chose to arrange their books by the genre. The drawback to this method? Sometimes books do not fit neatly into only one genre. You have the “main genres” like fantasy, contemporary, historical fiction, science fiction, horror, romance, thriller, etc. BUT then you also have sub genres included within each genre. This method can become a little complicated.
» By Color
Arguably the most aesthetically pleasing method of organizing books. Organizing books by the color of the spine is a popular method of organizing books, especially among the YA crowd. This method is not practical in the slightest, but it sure looks good! Some people go as far as taking off the dust jackets and organize their books by the color of the naked cover. Again, this looks amazing, but what do you do with the dust jackets?! Also, what do you do when you have a series that does not share the same cover color? Books in a series are like a family – they belong together!
» Chronological Order
Not sure why you would chose to arrange your books this way, but I’m sure there are some that chose to place their books in some type of chronological order. You could order by date you read the book, order by date the book was published, or if you are really ambitious, order by time period the book is set in.
» By Size
Some decide to organize their books by size. You can arrange your books from tallest to smallest or vice versa.
» Vertical & Horizontal
Do you stack your books vertically AND horizontally? I feel like this method gives the bookcases a more interesting look.
» Read vs. TBR
Some people may separate the books they’ve read & the ones they have yet to read. This method really gives you a great visual of how many books you have on your physical TBR. When you mix all your books together, it is easy to overlook that growing TBR pile. Maybe after seeing just how many books you have yet to read in one place, you will find the motivation you need to tackle those neglected books.
» Backwards/Pages Facing Out
A new trend that has gained popularity over this year would be to place books spine side in, so that the pages are facing out. Like sorting by color, this method sure does look neat, but is incredibly unpractical. I would only suggest this method for people that have bookshelves as decoration and never actually plan on reading the books that sit on their shelves. How do you ever find the book you are looking for?
» Bonus: Bookish Merchandise
Do you include things other than books on your shelves? Another trend is to include things like bookish mugs, Funko pops, book letters, book related pins, bookmarks, etc. on your shelves.
Looking at all the potential ways to organize books, I would label myself as someone who uses a combination of the different methods. My bookcases are arranged by genre, size, read & TBR separated, and I stack books vertical & horizontally. I also include bookish merchandize on my shelves.
What does this all say about me? I’m going to venture to say that it means I really like to categorize things & I go for practicality over aesthetics. I personally would never be able to be one of those people who arranges their books by color or with the pages facing out. It would just feel wrong. I can appreciate how beautiful it looks, but it just isn’t functional. Call me boring, but if boring is wrong, I don’t want to be right 🙂
How do you organize your bookshelves?
Did I miss any of the methods of organizing books?
Does the way you organize books say something about your personality?
Comment below & let me know!