On The Shelf: Styling The Perfect Shelfie At Home


Styling the perfect shelfie (it’s not just for Instagram, you know)

Words Kate Watson-Smyth

A new shelf arrangement can breathe new life into old things. This makes it a good moment to give your house a reboot. Taking the overlooked or unloved parts of your home and injecting a fresh new feel with a few small simple tricks is a quick and easy way to kick off your refresh. Ranked in the top ten interiors Instagram accounts by British Vogue, Editor of award-winning blog – Mad About The House, Kate Watson-Smyth, shares her top tips for styling your shelves.



Make sure there is variation. Books upright, books on their sides. A tall candlestick and a short one on the pile of books. Let the eye travel along.



Unless your shelf is very narrow, try to not have everything in a straight line. Put the candlestick in front of the postcard that’s propped up at the back. Let the necklaces hang down from the jewellery stand and pool on the book below.

Odd Numbers

Generally speaking, things group better in threes or fives. If you can mix the height within the group, you’re already halfway there. But that’s not to say you can’t go for symmetrical – a candle at each end, for example. But then bring in some odd numbers.


Random Stuff

Of course, you want to display your bottles of scent and your family photos, but this is also the perfect place for that fabulous stone you brought back from the beach last summer, or that shell that you haven’t been quite sure of what to do with. This is the spot for the random treasures that don’t quite make sense on their own but which mean something to you. But don’t just buy something for the sake of it; this shelfie, as much as the rest of your house, should tell your story. It’s about your treasures or bathroom necessities. It’s not just for the Instagram, you know.

Don’t Be Afraid Of The Empty Space

Designers call this negative space, but it basically means don’t cram it all in. Give your things room to breathe.

And Finally

If in doubt, a little posy of flowers or a plant will often bring your shelfie to life.Extract taken from “Mad About The House” by Kate Watson-Smyth

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