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How To Curate The Perfect Nursery Bookshelf

Remember the saying “Don’t judge a book by its cover”? Well, when it comes to bookshelves in nurseries, I toss that phrase by the wayside. My mom (who is a second grade teacher) is probably cringing at this admission, but beautiful book covers are almost art-like when displayed. Today I’m rounding up a dozen of my favorite children’s book covers that look perfect on a nursery bookshelf, all of which have equally awesome stories.

Favorite Books for Nursery Bookshelves

Row 1: Ada Twist, Scientist by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts | Cars Galore by Peter Stein and Bob Staake | Lenny & Lucy by Philip C. Stead and Erin E. Stead

Row 2: The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywait and Oliver Jeffers | Paris-Chien: Adventures of an Ex-Pat Dog by Jackie Clark Mancuso | Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle

Row 3: Gaston by Kelly DiPucchio and Christian Robinson | The Wonderful Things You Will Be by Emily Winfield Martin | I Had a Favorite Dress by Boni Ashburn and Julia Denos

Row 4: Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin and Daniel Salmieri | Just Being Audrey by Margaret Cardillo and Julia Denos | This is New York by Miroslav Sasek

Here are a few tips to curate the perfect nursery bookshelf.

Mix up the sizes. From tall books to short books, from square books to rectangular books, play around with different shapes and sizes. I often find that placing contrasting shapes or sizes next to each other on the bookshelf to be the most eye-appealing.

Pick a color scheme. Similarly to the first step of designing a room, pick a color scheme for the books you plan on displaying. The color scheme could be in the same palette as your nursery, or perhaps you could try focusing on one color and go for a monochrome look. Another idea is to use a complementary color that is not used anywhere else in the nursery to bring attention to the bookshelf.

Try a theme. If a color scheme for your bookshelf sounds overwhelming, try sticking to a theme. Perhaps you will display all travel-related books, or maybe all animal-related books. A theme can also come into play if you want to change out the book collection often. In this situation, it can be a lot of fun to swap the books to fit the upcoming season or holiday. I’ll be filling my toddler’s three little bookshelves with Christmas books come December.

Curious what my toddler’s nursery bookshelf looks like? Here’s a peek at his current display.