I love books. So do many of my friends and family members. Here are painting ideas you can steal to give your beloved book collection pride of place.

I can understand why Belle’s jaw dropped when the Beast gave her all the books in his library. But very few of us are princes and we don’t have those many books either, nor do we have cavernous home libraries for our books. What most of us actually have are reading nooks or spaces for a bookshelf that may have to double as a place to hold some home decor or cherished photographs.

I can also understand why a friend was not happy with Marie Kondo when she said to keep not more than 30 books in your collection. If you’re a bibliophile, don’t fly off the handle but listen to what Marie Kondo had to say about this particular matter, “The point of the KonMari Method is to figure out your sense of value, what you hold most important. If your reaction is anger that you have to let go of books then that’s great because that means for you books are invaluable,” she says. “The idea is that if it sparks joy for you, you must keep it even if I go over to your home and I say, ‘Do you really want to keep this book?’ If you feel that it sparks joy for you, keep it with confidence.” – Source

Get Inspired with these Painting Ideas for Your Home Library

1  Create a cozy reading corner

Cozy Reading Corner

Color Palette for Cozy Reading Corner

Brighten up any corner in your home by tucking in a cozy reading space there. So as not to make the space look busy, choose a neutral color for the walls.  It would be great if you can have it near a window so that you will have natural light when you read your book. But of course always have a reading lamp for the convenience of seeing the words on the page more clearly especially when you read on dark days or at night. Have an armchair strategically placed near the book shelf for easy access. It’s best if you have an oversized armchair so you can loll about with your legs on the arm rest. Have a soft throw just in case it’s cool, which is hardly the case in this country unless you have the air conditioner on full blast.

If this reading nook is beside a window, give the space muted colors especially if the view outside is worth looking at now and then to rest your eyes.

2  Convert a loft area in your condo into a home library

Office room with orange drape

Color Palette for Office room with orange drape

Convert an upper open loft area into a home library. It’s a kind of space that offers privacy but still allows you to feel the presence of other family members. Get a comfortable sectional sofa just in case there are more bookworms in the family. A loft area like this would benefit from light neutral walls to compensate for a much lower ceiling. Use other soft textures like rugs, throws or pillows to increase the comfort factor.

Swap a low shelf for a much higher one if you need much more space for your books.

3  Use a picture window as your reading nook’s wow factor

Reading corner by the window with wooden shelves

Color Palette for Reading corner by the window with wooden shelvesWhat’s outside the picture window in the landing or at the end of a corridor? If you’ve got a delightful view outside, like your beautiful garden or treetops glistening in the sun, you should definitely make that space your reading nook.

Another of our painting ideas is to keep the colors modest and muted like the white walls in the reading nook above. Shelves on both sides can give you more than ample space for your book collection. Make a ledge by the window and add drawers in the space below for extra storage.

Crank up the wow factor by covering the ledge with a soft mattress. Throw in some pillows and you’re good to go into whatever world your book and your imagination take you.

4  Make use of awkward spaces


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Color Palette for awkward spaces

One of the awkward spaces you can find in a home is under the staircase. Most would use it for storage. But this one shown above is an inspired idea. Under the spiraling curves of the staircase is a “secret” place where you can ensconce yourself in a comfy armchair and travel to exciting worlds with your book. What painting ideas would look good in a space like this? Definitely something which works well with the whole room and which picks out the hues from the different elements you see. Limit the colors of the major surfaces to three.

Note the black shelves which echo the black banisters. The wood base of the shelves echo the wood treads of the stairs as well as the floor.

5 Fill a whole wall with bookshelves


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Color Palette for Whole wall book cases

I would love to have built-in bookshelves that would be a perfect fit for one wall. Those of us who own many books that we’ve collected, read and re-read over the years, this kind of shelving would be perfect to showcase our prized possessions. This would serve as the main interior feature in a room.

There are two painting ideas shown here but both are based on the color palette chosen for the room and its furnishings. The painting idea above uses dark colors for a dramatic feel like the color swatches shown under the photo.


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Color Palette for Whole wall book cases

The light neutrals in this space give this place a welcoming and calming ambience. The grid-like precision of the bookshelves add to the quiet feel of the place. The natural materials of the lampshade, the ladder and the table with its organic form are pulled together by the geometric rug.

Whether your home library is in dark colors or in light neutrals, the key is to think of your color story for the whole room and not just a part of it. Choose a color palette that works well together.

If you practice tsundoku (the Japanese word which means acquiring reading materials but just let them pile up and not reading them), then this kind of shelf would be best for you. That or dedicating one big room for your acquisitions.

6  Add whimsy to your room with this quirky shelf


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Many people read a book or a magazine before going to sleep. If you’re that person, why not make a playful shelf like the tree bookcase and make that the wall decor above your headboard instead of the usual painting? Serial readers who read multiple books at the same time would find this useful to have.

So what painting idea can you have for this kind of mini-library? Try a hue which contrasts with your quirky shelf if you want it to stand out. If not, then use monochromes, like a white shelf on a white wall, or in this case, a brown wall for this tree bookcase.

7  Have a shelf that multitasks

Painting Ideas for Home Libraries

Use a bookshelf to house your books, divide a big space and demarcate areas with different functions, or to give privacy. Since this kind of shelf makes a huge impact, a winning painting idea for this kind of space would be to keep the walls in the different spaces the same color.

Painting Ideas for Other Rooms

Let it B has loads of painting ideas for the other rooms in a home. You can find trending colors and color palettes in this link, if you want to stay in the blog. If you want to have more visual aids, then visit our YouTube Channel. Not only will you find more painting ideas but also a lot of DIY instructional videos!

Boysen offers thousands of colors to choose from. Just go to any Mix and Match Station near you and select your colors.


Annie is the Managing Editor of Let it B | MyBoysen Blog. An unrepentant workaholic, she runs this blog and her own company Talking Lions (https://talkinglions.com). She thrives on collaborating with people who are good at what they do, and working together with them to create something special. Annie learned interior styling while managing her own wholesale business in the Netherlands, importing high-end, handmade home furnishings to stock four outlets and a showroom in the country.

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