Shelves for Display and Decoration
While storage shelves are utilitarian in nature — although frequently dressed or accessorized to soften their “strictly business” demeanor — the other side of the shelving coin adds a purely artistic touch to a room.
A single wall shelf might hold books or other meaningful items, or a grouping of smaller shelves or wall cubes might showcase a collection of pottery or travel souvenirs. Likewise, a shelving unit’s primary purpose might be media storage — to hold your audio components and/or a television and DVD player and to keep CDs and/or DVDs organized — but the unit’s eye-level shelves might hold an attractively arranged array of decorative items. What a great use of space and your furnishings budget — effectively serving two purposes with the single piece!
Where to Buy Shelves
As you’ve likely learned from other shopping experiences, the Internet is almost always the best place to begin an investigation for a purchase you’re considering, and it’s also often the best place to buy the item. The wonderful World Wide Web gives you a much broader range of choices, and the economies of scale businesses enjoy by utilizing the Internet’s capability to reach greater numbers of people can be passed on to buyers in the form of better pricing.
How to Shop for Shelving
Before you visit any website or store in your shelving search, determine and note:
- The dimensions of the space you’re working with;
- The style of décor in the room where your new shelves will reside; and
- A “ballpark” budget for the purchase.
When choosing your shelves, you should also consider the weight of the items you will be storing on them. Simply put, if your items are heavy a floor-standing shelving system will be a better choice than wall-mounted shelving.
With wall-mounted shelving you must also consider whether your walls are sturdy enough to carry the weight of the shelf. Ideally, you’ll be able to secure the shelf in the location of a wall stud, but at a minimum you need to stay clear of electrical sockets and the like when you install a wall-mounted shelf.
That brings to mind another important consideration for choosing shelves, and it’s one that is often overlooked. Do you have the tools and experience to assemble and/or install the shelves or access to help? While there are usually handyman resources available for hire to help with this, a little forethought and advance preparation can definitely make your shelving addition go more smoothly.
For further considerations specific to a particular type of shelving unit, be sure to check out the appropriate ShelveShop Buying Guide for: