Signature You

How to showcase your life (not your mess)

An emerging trend called “Book wealth” style is about displaying meaningful personal objects on your bookshelf (book shelf, book wealth, get it?). This is actually from the existing Casual Style design that evolved into a buzzword-of-the-day, but it’s still charming, fun, and worth diving into. 

So you’re going to tell a story with your treasures. How do you do that tastefully?

Too neat looks like a theme restaurant. Too messy looks like clutter.  Here are a few tips to showcase your personal things while avoiding a yard sale look:

  1. First, avoid shabby or overly personal items like old diaries, datebooks, trophies or yearbooks. Instead, include items that reflect fresher experiences:  books of travel, fiction, trip souvenirs, framed postcards, a standing plate or platter placed behind other things for layering, a special rock, a vase, even a favorite teapot. Small plants grouped together (not lined up) add cheer. 
  • Handmade objects or gifts tell an interesting story and lend a personal, organic touch, such as sake cups made from pottery. A first effort or crooked ceramic piece can add a whimsical twist. 
  • Showcase things related to your artistic talents and experiences. If you’re a knitter, a wooden bowl of soft yarn balls adds texture and color. Other items could include show posters, playbills, vintage paint brushes in a decorative cannister, practice amps (see photo!) – any personal treasure that tells your story.

Need affordable, professional help? Ping me @

Follow Lilac Dust Design & Color Consulting LLC @lilacdustcolor on IG and “X”, LinkedIn, and FB, for decorating tips and updates on industry trends. Work with me to find your ideal refresh and receive my Sherwin-Williams PRO+ discount price on paint and primer! 

Sign up for our mailing list on our homepage. Have a question or comment? Email us at