Stunning Arched Bookcase Design Ideas

I am always on the lookout for unique and beautiful storage ideas. Recently I came across arched bookcases and instantly fell in love. Every home I have lived in for the last 6 years has severely lacked storage so these are the perfect solution to my storage woes. They are simple yet elegant and are a definite step up from traditional bookshelves. I have rounded up some of my favorite arched bookcase design ideas

Arched bookcase graphic

Understanding the Beauty of Arched Bookcases

Architectural Elegance

Arched bookcases are architecturally beautiful, and can instantly create a sense of luxury in any room in your home. The subtle curvature of the arch provides an elegant contrast to traditional bookcases. By bringing bookcases into your home you can bring a feeling of sophistication without having to completely redesign your existing space.

Space Optimization

Bookshelves almost always have multiple shelves, providing plenty of storage for your much loved books, knickknacks, and other decorative items. The curved arch allows for a smart use of vertical space, making it a perfect choice for your home design.

Design Considerations for an Arched Bookcase

Size and Proportions

Before selecting a bookcase it’s important to consider the dimensions of your room. An too large bookcase could easily overwhelm your space, while one that is too small may not make the desired design impact or provide enough storage space. Strike a balance between the height and width of the shelves to ensure they complement the room’s dimensions nicely.

Material Selection

Choose a material that complements your already existing decor. Woods, like oak or cherry, offer timeless appeal and durability, while metal and glass shelves lend a more contemporary and modern feel to your shelving. Likewise, built-in shelving units are classy and always in style.

Finish and Color

The color and finish of your bookcases greatly impact the feel of the room. Dark colors create a luxurious, traditional atmosphere while light paint colors make the space feel larger and more open. It’s usually best to match darker wood shelving units with dark wood floors while lighter wood shelving coordinates best with light wood floors.

Arched Bookcase Style

Arched bookcases come in a huge variety of styles and colors. Select one that complements your home’s existing decor and other furniture pieces.

Shelf Decor Ideas for an Arched Bookcase

Arranging Books

Obviously, the primary goal of bookshelves is to organize your books. Group your books by color or size, and place them on the shelves in a way that aligns with your style preferences. Consider stacking books horizontally and vertically for a unique and intresting look.


Add a personal touch to your bookcases with some of your favorite collectibles and mementos. Vintage pieces, travel souvenirs, family heirlooms, and photos add a touch of personality to your home and give it that cozy lived in appearance.

Greenery and Vases

Add some potted plants or fresh flowers to a few shelves to introduce a touch of nature and add a pop of nature and color to your bookcases.

Artwork and Picture Frames

Leaning or hanging framed artwork on the bookcase shelves can create a gallery-like effect. This adds depth to the overall display and elevates the bookcase’s overall look.

Personalization with Photos

Add some framed photos of your favorite people, places or things on the shelves to make it more personal and intimate.

Customizations for Your Arched Bookcase

Adjustable Shelves

Customize your arched bookcase with adjustable shelves to accommodate different book sizes and decorative items. The flexibility ensures that your bookcase can adapt to your home’s changing needs.

Integrated Lighting

Install built-in lighting to illuminate the shelves and showcase your book collection.

Shelf Backing

Add an extra layer of sophistication to your bookcase with wallpaper. This customization will instantly bring texture and depth to the shelves, making it a focal point in any room. The best part of this design idea is that you can coordinate your shelf backing with either an accent wall or another focal point in your home.

Arched Bookcase Ideas and Inspiration

Recessed Bookcases

One way to make a bookcase fit right into your space is to incorporate them into your fireplace accent wall. This is especially ideal if you have a small living space and need additional storage space since these shelves do not take up space in the room they are an ideal solution.

Stand Alone Bookcase 

These bookshelves are not built-in like a lot of fireplace accent wall bookshelves are. This is the perfect design for those who have an abundance of space in the room that they can dedicate to storage. This design also allows for maximum flexibility and allows you to take the shelves with you when it’s time to move which is especially important if you, like me are a serial renter. 

Wood Stained Bookcase

For those looking to add a warm and inviting touch to their home, these stained bookshelves are the perfect choice for your living room design. The wood adds an element of texture and design that brings warmth to this otherwise neutral living room. I absolutely love the wood stain on these bookshelves it really brings out the color in the light wood floors and light furniture.

Bedroom Arched Bookcase

Think that bookcases are just for living rooms? That’s not the case, as this design shows arched bookcases can be used anywhere in the home. I love the idea of having bookshelves in the bedroom because you can truly personalize them with family photos, collectibles, kids art work, or other sentimental knickknacks. Plus they might just encourage kids to read more which is definitely not a bad thing.

Black Arched Bookcase

Okay so maybe this is not truly an arched bookshelf but I think it is close enough to be included in this list. I have had a soft spot for black anything lately. I especially love this shelving black accent wall for a home office, it allows for plenty of storage for all your office supplies and it looks great too.

Small Bookcase

These smaller than usual bookshelves are perfect for kid’s rooms or even playrooms. They are the perfect size to fit all of your kid’s books and maybe even small toys. The sizing also allows your kiddos easy access to grab their own toys or books.

Corner Arched Bookcase

I did a post recently on corner fireplaces and loved that design, but I think I love the idea of a corner bookshelf even more than that. This particular design is the perfect way to add an accent to a space that may not have a wall suitable for a traditional accent wall.

Home Office Bookcase

What better way to add a touch of style and sophistication to your home office than with an arched bookshelf. This design is a perfect place to store all your supplies, reference material, photos, and of course books. I love the subtle coastal design of this small home office.

Ikea Hack

If you follow this blog you know I am a sucker for a good Ikea hack. This design is no different. This DIY’er took a rather boring ole Ikea bookshelf and turned it into a beautiful showstopping piece of furniture. I absolutely love this whole design from the DIY aspect to the dark green color selection. This is definitely a project worth adding to my list of projects for my forever home.

Arched Bookcases with Cabinets

This is another lovely and practical design. I love that the upper shelves can be used to display items you want guests to see and the bottom portion can be used to store items you do not want to be seen like board games, blankets, or craft supplies.

Above Doorway Arch

I saved the most unique design for last. This is an unlikely entry on this blog post on arched bookcases but this is arched and it is a bookshelf, soooooo. What I love about this idea is that you now have a fun place to store books that you love and can’t bear to get rid of. This can be used anywhere in the home not just above a door like this example. I think this would be a great way to store Children’s books in either a bedroom or playroom.

Arched Bookcases: Conclusion

In conclusion, there are multiple ways to design your shelves. Whether you want the focal point of the room to be the bookcases or just need them for practical storage reasons. The ideas shown here will help you make the shelves work in your space. Just find what works for you and go with it! Good luck!

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