Best shelving solutions for your home

Build statement shelves in 5 easy steps - plus get these 3 signature looks

Photography: Frances Marais | Styling: Charl Edwards

When it comes to storage in a small space (check out how these homeowners made the most of their small spaces), the best option is often to turn the items you're hiding away into decor. Not only is this kind to small budgets as well as being a minimal storage solution, it also serves a third purpose: turning the stuff you'd usually have tucked away into a talking point. After all, isn't it easier to make conversation about your favourite things than fake fruit and a checkers board that you still don't know how to use?

statement shelves

Make the most of a small space with layers of light colours and a statement shelf that feels spacious rather than cluttered. Avoid a washed-out effect by adding a few accents of colour or a high-shine piece.

statement shelves

Emphasise the angles of your shelf with geometric shapes displayed alongside your favourite pieces. Keep it cool with shades of cement grey, greens and duck egg blue, and introduce simple, affordable materials like wood, glass and stone on the shelf and throughout your space.

statement shelves

A pine shelf in any shape will add an easy, earthy appeal to your space - especially when matched with other natural colours and textures. For added warmth, just add touches of metal, tones of red, brown and orange, and a candle or two - carefully considered in terms of safety and size, of course.

Once you've decided on which of these three signature looks works for you and your space, here's how to create your statement shelf in five easy steps.

1. See what you need to store

What are you looking to keep safe and secure? In our examples, it's favourite books that we needed to find a home for.

2. Select your shelf - and assemble

Now that you know what needs to be on it, you'll be able to assess how much weight your shelf has to bear. If you've got lighter items, a floating shelf that comes ready-assembled and hangs on picture hooks will do just fine. It'll arrive already in shape, and you'll just need to use a screwdriver to attach its hanging mechanism. For something more heavy-duty, you'll need to choose a shelf with brackets - and consider drilling holes in the wall and inserting heavier-duty screws if you at the moment you only have standard picture hooks.

3. Find your favourites.

What else do you have in your home that deserves to be decor? Favourite accessories, holiday souvenirs, and sleek stationery can all find a place here, depending on the shelf's style and the room in which it resides.

4. Get the look.

Step back and assess what's missing. Is everything the same height? Add some levels with a taller or shorter ornament. Looking dull? Add a touch of bright colour, or metallic texture. Feeling flat? Adding a mirror can add a new dimension to the display.

5. Add a little greenery!

On your shelf, around it or underneath it, a little leafiness works wonders for a fresh-looking interior. A little potted succulent is easy to care for and will look good on the shelf itself, but if you can't be trusted to keep even a cactus alive, cuttings in a pot or vase will look just as lovely.

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