Start with the bottom most shelf. The largest and heaviest items should go here. Do you have some large heavy books? Or a collection of large books? Or you could slide some really nice woven baskets onto the bottom shelf and have them hold your paperback stash. The point here is that the bottom shelf should have the weight.. both the visual weight and the actual weight. The items you place on this shelf don't necessarily have to be books. Maybe a large vase or urn... or a large globe.
Consider where and how you will use your shelving with baskets before you buy. Would the needs of your family best be met using a set of tall bookcase shelves with lots of storage, medium-sized shelving with baskets, or basket benches that can add more seating area to your living space?
Create a contrasting back: A beautiful way to make your shelves stand out is to change the background of the shelves. You can go dramatic and paint it much darker or lighter, or go subtle and only move a few shades off. Either way, the contrast will draw the eye in.
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