Home Hacks

3 Steps to Organising Your Home Library

Some people say that there is nothing like the scent and sensation of book pages between your fingers, and the feeling of holding a world of ideas in your hands. While technology has afforded us the convenience of accessing thousands of books on a single electronic device, there are many folks who still prefer reading from books.

Many of us end up accumulating a sizable number of books over the years. Perhaps you are an avid reader who enjoys building your own book collection, or someone like me, who buys books believing that I would read them slowly but eventually. (Fun fact! The Japanese actually have a word for it—積ん読 [tsundoku], which refers to the act of buying books and not reading them, leaving them to pile up with other unread books.)

Regardless of what type of reader you are, if you are wondering how to organise your personal library at home, look no further. Read on for some tips to get started!

1. Let go of old books

The first step to organising your home library – deciding what to keep, and what to let go. It can be difficult for book lovers to part with books, but with a limited amount of space, sometimes tough decisions have to be made. Freeing up space also makes room for new books in future!

If you have an extensive collection, take the time to sort through your books. Set aside those you do not wish to keep, such as old books or titles you will not read again. Consider giving them away to friends who might want them, or donating them to local charities.

Alternatively, why not organise a book swap event within your community? Meet up with your friends and neighbours at the neighbourhood centre and have fun trading books!

2. Catalogue your collection

Have you ever bought the same book twice? I know I have! Cataloguing your books lets you keep track of what you own so you can avoid this pitfall.

There are several websites and apps available on the Internet to assist you with cataloguing your books electronically. Some apps come with a barcode scanning feature which allows you to easily input information about the books.

For those with a large book collection, this might sound like a daunting task. A great idea would be to make it a family activity! Get all hands on deck, and bond over organising your home library together over the weekends.

3. Choose your shelving system

Congratulations on making it this far! Next, choose a system of organising and re-shelving your books. You can do it in several ways:

  • In alphabetical order by author’s name
  • By subject matter or genre
  • By colour
  • By size

Organising your books by colour can be an aesthetically pleasing option, while organising it by genre might be more practical. Up for a challenge? Level up and use the Dewey Decimal System adopted by libraries worldwide. Pick what works best for you, and stick with it!

Following through with the above steps should help you achieve a less cluttered home and a more organised book collection. Decided to organise your books by colour? Your gorgeous rainbow library will surely become the talking point among guests!

Now that you have created your personal library in the comfort of your own home, go forth and indulge in your favourite page-turners!

Interested in finding out how to spruce up your book shelves, or how to decorate your house with books? Stay tuned to MyNiceHome for more decor tips to come!

If you have any good ideas about home organisation, do share them with us by emailing mynicehome@mailbox.hdb.gov.sg or via our MyNiceHome Facebook page.

By Kay Liao
December 20, 2017


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