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How to Organize Your Bookshelf

You’ve got the books. You’ve got a designated space. Now, how are you organizing?

Hello, friends! We’re talking about organization! I get asked all the time how I organize the bookcase and I’m happy to finally lay it all out!

There’s no right or wrong way to organize. In fact, when we first built our bookcase, there was ZERO organization. 100% aesthetic display and, although it was pretty to look at,  it created an internal fury every time I went to search for a book.

There are several ways to go about it. Many organize by genre, fiction & nonfiction, alphabetically by author, celebrity book club picks, and even the eye-catching color-coding rainbow. Organization only needs to make sense to YOU!

My Hybrid Approach to Organization

I’ve taken a hybrid design to lining my shelves and have two systems in place. 

The bookcase is made up of eight rows of five shelves each.

The Top Four

The top four rows of shelves are only books that I’ve read and kept. These are organized alphabetically (left to right, top to bottom) by the author’s last name. 

The Bottom Four

The bottom four rows of shelves are all books I haven’t read yet- hold your judgment! They are also organized alphabetically (left to right, top to bottom) by the author’s last name.

Keeping my read and to be read (TBR) books separately makes locating a book so much easier. If I’m looking to lend a book to a friend, it’s one I’ve read and loved and I know to look at the top. 

If I’m looking for my next read, having all available books within arms reach makes the process more accessible and the decision overall less stressful. I don’t have to climb a ladder every time I want to read a synopsis or first chapter of a potential next read!

The Exceptions

Of course, there are exceptions! Scattered throughout the bookcase, there are some special edition sets and our Bible on display.

There is also a dedicated space for books that have not been published yet. I keep these lined in order of their publication dates. I organize those chronologically, as opposed to alphabetically, to ensure that I can share about the book in a timely fashion. 

To each their own! Like I mentioned earlier, organization only needs to make sense to YOU!

So, tell me! How do you organize? Do you have exceptions to your organization, too?

Leave me a comment!


  1. Scott
    June 11, 2022 / 9:50 am

    Hey… would love to see a post on how y’all build these shelves. We love ’em and we need ’em!

    • June 15, 2022 / 10:53 am

      Thank you! I’m working on putting together information for a post!

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