Creating a stunning nursery shelf display

A well arranged shelf goes a long way to making a room feel put-together, neat and intentional. Today we are sharing 7 simple tips to help you put together your own beautiful shelf display.

1) Paint the backing of your bookcase in a contrasted colour

Colourful bookcase background
Shop the Shelf: Wooden Swan Decor, Pink Pine Letter Blocks, Decorated Letter With Heart, Pastel Raindrop Cut-outs.

This is a super easy DIY trick that has a big impact in a space. Take your existing bookshelf and paint the backing board in a contrasting colour that complements the rest of your nursery. Choose a bright colour that stands out, or go bold with an unusual choice like a blackboard backing.

Tip: To avoid your nursery looking like a primary school, always choose an unexpected tone of each colour. Eg: In this photo we used a limy-citrus yellow, instead of a bright primary. Other ideas would be using coral instead of pastel pink, or teal instead of baby blue.

2) Find a statement shelf

Dinosaur Nuresery Shelf Display
Shop the Shelf: Dinosaur Shelf, Name Stand.

If your shelf is a work of art in itself, then it must be the prime focus! Keep your display very simple and make sure that the items draw attention to the shelf itself, instead of taking the focus away.

3) Choose a prime focus point and plan the rest of the arrangement around it

Cloud Shelf Display with Border
Shop the Shelf: Small Cloud Shelf, Large Cloud Shelf, Hand-painted Whimsical Rabbit Peel and Stick Vinyl Wall Border.

When you have one specific piece you want to display, plan the rest of your arrangement around it. This is especially lovely with personal items that have great meaning to you. In our arrangement here we wanted to leave the main focus on this classic “Willow Tree” figure set of mother and daughter. The cloud shelves are simple and complement the statue rather than over power it. The rest of the decor is minimal and in colours that enhance the figurine.

4) Display your books as a visual art piece

Book Display Shelf
Shop the Shelf: Birch Star Shelf Decor.

Books double up perfectly as wall art and it is often a shame to let those gorgeous book covers go unseen. By displaying the cover instead of the spine you can create a beautiful shelf display.

Tip: Use books of different sizes, but complementing colours, to create an artistic layout.

5) Choose a colour palette

Pastels Shelf Display with Colour Blocks LR
Shop the Shelf: White and Gold Swan Decor, Pastel Rainbow Shelf Ornament, Pastel Letter Blocks, Pastel Colour Ring Stacker.

Choosing a colour palette for your display helps the shelf look cohesive and classy. For our pastel display we stuck to classic girly pastels, with a lot of white to balance the whole look out. The result is feminine, pretty and soft, without being overdone.

Tip: Arranging your colour palette in advance with the use of paint swatches (physical or digital) can really help you decide which colours to choose.

6) Less is more

Arrow Shelf Display
Shop the Shelf: Arrow Shelf, Mountain Ornament Set, XL Wooden Letter.

This trick is hardly new – you’ve all read it before. It is so important however that I thought it was worth mentioning again. Less really is more! Choose simple pieces that coordinate well with your nursery and are meaningful to you.

Tip: When in doubt, take something off!

7) Decorate with toys

Cloud Shelf Blue Display
Shop the Shelf: Large Cloud Shelf, Letter Blocks (custom colour).
lovedominique Pastels Toy Display Nursery Decor
Shop the Shelf: Pastel Rainbow Ornament, Pastel Letter Blocks (custom colour), Pastel Wooden Ring Stacker Toy.

Using toys to decorate is a fun and inexpensive way to add pops of colour to your room. The best thing about this tip is that you get two uses from your purchase, and that’s always great! This is an especially good idea for those toys you have been given as a gift or bought at a clearance sale, but that your child is not ready for yet.

Tip: Mix different textures, like wood and fabric, to create visual interest.

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