Help Accessorizing Book Shelves

Dear Style Studio,

I was wondering if you could help me with accessorizing my built in book shelves! I’m having a really hard time especially because my husband will not take those awful speakers down!!!

Shelves with speakers and TV

They are just a total eye sore…hopefully once I put accessories up there they will just blend in?!

I am planning on painting the backs of the shelves (probably a tan color). Should I also paint behind the TV the tan color or leave it as is? (Currently, it is the blue/grey color that is on our main walls).

I appreciate any recommendations!! I’m sick of bare shelves. 🙁


Sara L.

Dear Sara,

Our first thought is to change out the speakers – to possibly surround-sound speakers. You can get ones that are much smaller and will blend in well. But if he won’t go along with changing them out, do you think he would allow you to paint the sides white? They will look less overpowering.

As far as painting the backs of the shelves, we suggest that you paint them the same color as the walls. Try not to add an additional color to the mix.

We also would like for you to go to Style Studio’s article: Annette’s 7 golden Rules for Styling a Bookshelf. It has wonderful ideas for decorating shelves like yours. Annette Joseph is a well-known stylist that is seen on TV and has written a few books. We do hope that this information helps with your decorating!


The Style Studio Team

How to Decorate Team

We enjoy spending days interacting with How to Decorate readers. From answering Design Dilemmas to writing How To articles and working with guest designers, our passion is to provide informative and accurate resources to help people solve their design problems.