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As the weather turns and you find yourself indoors a little more often, you might start to change your mind about some of the decor in your house.

Maybe the nautical theme in your living room isn’t quite working anymore now that summer is over, or maybe you’re just looking for something a little more cozy and rustic with the holidays approaching. We think we might have what you need: wood shelves!

An easy way to add a little rustic charm to any room, particularly one that you want to warm up for the winter months, wood shelves are easy to install, great for storage, and are easy to decorate. But what if you want to go beyond just storing things on them? Glad you asked! Here’s a few ways to decorate wood shelves to make your home even cozier:

Hang some pictures that match the time of year
If you’re anything like our parents, you probably have a ton of pictures of your family from various holidays growing up. Now is a perfect time to set up some wall shelves and start cycling through them. Got family coming over for Thanksgiving? Why not show off a picture of your daughter’s turkey costume from her second grade Thanksgiving play? What about your older son’s first picture with Santa, or the first time you all went sledding? It’ll help you get more in the spirit of the season, and give you a chance to embarrass your loved ones with treasured memories – isn’t that the point of pictures?

Books that you’re actually going to read
It’s just what it sounds like – some people keep books around just for the look, but that means they usually wind up getting more attention than the ones you’re actually working on. If you plan on spending some time in front of the fireplace, or at least inside with a blanket and the heater up, use your wood shelves to stack the books you’re actually planning on getting to in the near future to keep them in-sight and on your mind.

Organize everything by color, shape, and so on
If you have some knickknacks to display, and who doesn’t this time of year, try to coordinate everything to maintain a ‘flow’. Autumn colors with autumn colors, snow colors with snow colors, nothing too big or too out of place, and try to remember your weight limits to prevent anything falling off and breaking.

Arrange things asymmetrically
A lot of people have the natural inclination to put all their shelves at the exact same height to keep everything looking symmetrical and even, but doing the opposite can actually make a more modern and dynamic look. Vary the heights of your shelves to freshen up the look of your den and make it easier to put things on them in some cases. (Which is always helpful with heavier things like vases.)

Don’t let it stress you out
A key thing to remember in most decorating scenarios is to just relax and enjoy yourself. The longer you think about exactly what treasured junk from your mom’s house to show off on a wall shelf for the autumn months, the harder it’s going to be for you to just relax and enjoy your new decorations. Don’t overthink things, don’t spend an hour redoing one shelf until it’s just right, just let everything go where it may and remember – you’ll probably be changing it all after the New Year anyway.

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