Decorating With Books

I’ve seen the Instagram pictures. I KNOW this is a fairly common practice. But seeing pictures and seeing it (kind of) in action are two different things. And in the time I’ve been working in a bookstore I’ve seen it a bit more than I’d have expected.

I’ve had realtors come in and say they’re decorating for an open house or model home. I’ve had people say they’re just buying them to put on their shelf for decoration.

Of course I’m not going to sit here and criticize what anyone does with their books. You’re free to do whatever you like with them just like I am. But what I DO NOT like at all is those people who REALLY decorate with books. And what I mean is when pages or covers of books are ripped off to be thrown on the wall in some complex design. Honestly, it doesn’t even look good. Looks pretty stupid to me.

Anyone can buy all the books they want just to destroy them, but I won’t be doing it. Books aren’t decoration to me. They’re entertaining. They’re stories. They’re mine.

Have you ever bought books just to use them as decoration?

16 thoughts on “Decorating With Books

  1. Agh no, how terrible! Sometimes when I really like a book (and it’s a hardback) I’ll whip the dust cover off and stick it on my wall like a little poster. Partly because dust covers annoy me whilst reading/organising shelves, and partly because then the pretty design underneath can have its time in the sun. But I can’t IMAGINE destroying a book just to make a funky collage outta the pages. Such a waste!!


    • This is important. Do you actually use a nail or anything to put it up? I’ve actually heard lots of people at my store say they don’t like the jackets. I’ve never had an issue with them. And the books underneath them are so dull to me.


      • I use blu-tack so I can rearrange them (and so they don’t get totally wrecked over time). I suppose its just a sensory issue. If they jiggle around a bit whilst I’m reading, it’s a little distracting!


      • Haha hmm. My lamp used to distract me when reading in bed. Cause I’d catch it straight on in the mirror and be like, “Why are you in my eye!?” ๐Ÿ˜‚


  2. Nope, but I do have a secondhand copy of David Copperfield that fell apart when i was about a third of the way through. I’ve replaced it with a readable one, but had the dilemma of what to do with the one that had fallen apart. I’m now using the loose pages origami style whenever I need a little envelope. It felt better to do that than just chuck it in the recycling, somehow.


  3. Only insomuch as I organize them so crazily that people look at my bookcase as a mystery. Which I guess can be a kind of decoration. But tearing books apart? No. The only thing I have like that is a false book that’s actually lockable to keep valuables or important documents hidden in plain sight. But I have so many books, it would take a burglar hours to find the actual false book.


    • How do you organize them? We sell those at the store. Those false book things. They’re weird. I’m imagining someone going through all your books searching for that one.


  4. I love books as decorations and by that I mean an amazing bookshelf for people to stare at in amazement!
    If I ever witnessed someone tearing up a book! I don’t know what I’d do, how could you just tear up something so precious, even my most hated books will never get that kind of treatment.
    I love crazy shelves and colour coded ones but destroying books for art? why not just print up some text on craft paper if you want that look? People be crazy.


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