I love books. We have a massive book collection. And I never want to give that up. Maybe it is the former teacher in me that cannot pass up a good book. Or a deal on Scholastic. Or any book recommendation from friends.
I love having my kids see me read. I love that my kids have an insane amount of books to choose from. Seeing their bookshelves filled
But keeping all those books organized can be a lot of work. So these 10 easy ways to organize a home library are perfect for any amount of books you may have!
1: Store Where You Need Them Most
When it comes to organizing books, the biggest thing I see is that the books aren’t stored where you need them the most!
So I recommend storing your books where you read them. For my kids, we store their books in their bedrooms. My books are stored in the living room. Our cookbooks are in the kitchen. And business books are stored in my office.
Because I keep the books in places where I read them, it allows us to read more books! Which is what I love!
2: Take Inventory
Make sure you take inventory of what you have.
Now it may surprise you that I am not a spreadsheet type of person. For my inventory, I like to keep it simple. I have a running list of books on my phone.
If you are a spreadsheet type of person, creating an inventory list may be helpful so you aren’t spending money to buy more of the same books.
You want to take inventory because it will prevent you from purchasing and storing books that you currently have. Plus, it will stop you from spending unnecessary money on something when you have it in your library already!
3: Create Storage Around Your Needs
Use vertical space to create storage for your home library. In our living room, we have shelves that are designed to hold all our books. Because we used vertical space, we are able to store more books.
In the kids’ rooms we did something similar. Eli has tall bookshelves that can grow with him. Which is a great use of vertical space that we have in the bedrooms as well. So use that space to create storage.
4: Section Books
Another way to organize your home library is to section off your books by category. We did this in Adleigh’s room so she could get the books she wanted when she wanted to read them.
We grouped the books on her bookshelf by binding. So she has a section of hard cover books. Another section for paperback books. Easy readers are another grouping. And chapter books is another section for her books.
I think this is a great idea for kids’ books as it is an easy way for them to find books they want to read and books they want you to read to them. We used the IKEA Kallax shelving system and turned it on its side for storage. Once Adleigh gets older, we can move the shelving to utilize the vertical space.
5: Should You Color-Code?
Color-coding books is a huge debate. And I have some thoughts on that.
If you are using your books as decor pieces, then color-coding is great. It adds some interesting color to your shelves.
But if you want to create a library where you can find the exact book you want, then color-coding might not be the best solution for you.
So figure out how you are going to use your home library. Is your library to display your books? Or do you want your library so you can find your books? When you answer that question, you can determine if color-coding books is right for you.
6: Declutter Your Home Library First
Now this piece of advice for your home library probably should be tip number 1.
Before you even start to store any of your books, make sure you are keeping the ones you love. Or the ones that you want to use as decor.
Any book that you don’t think you will read again and don’t love the look of the binding, you can sell or donate to your local library.
But make sure you only keep the books you want to keep. Don’t just hold onto a book just because.
I don’t think there is a specific number of books that is considered too many. You just have to find effective ways to store the books to create a home library.
7: Treat Books Like Decor
Now, you may want to use your books as decor pieces. I love doing that as well.
If you are treating the books a decor, make sure that you find books that fit your theme. Maybe you want to color-code your books. Find books with binding colors that work on your shelves. But also check to make sure that is a book you want in your home. Sometimes books with pretty covers don’t always resonate with who we are as a person. So make sure to check that out before you purchase.
You can also swap the books around so you only see the inside, instead of the binding. But only do this if you are using the books as decor. Because you won’t be able to find what you need when you need it if your books are all stored this way.
8: Remove Covers
Now this next tip is something you have to decide for yourself…do you keep book covers on or take them off?
I have found that the book covers are not necessary, so I remove them. But I have had in-home clients who have autographed copies of books that prefer to keep the book jacket on.
This is a person preference, so pick which one will best meet the needs of your home library.
9: Keep Things Easy For The Kids
Organizing kids books should be easy. So don’t make things challenging for them to keep up with as you set up their library.
If it is easier for you to have all the books stored in one place, then allow the kids books to stay in their room. Whether that be on a shelf or in a basket.
If the books are going to stay in their room, keep the book organization at their level. Grouping books by spine type is easy. Color-coding all the books all the time for toddlers may not be. So keep the organization easy for kids.
10: Enjoy Your Home Library
Finally, you need to enjoy your home library. It is a place for you to see all your incredible books you have read. Enjoy books in different places in your home. And find the books that inspire you when you need that inspiration.
If you want more book organizing tips, these posts below are for you: