Defend the Trend: Are “Shelfies” a Photo No-No?

BRIANA: Move over, duck face — there’s a new craze sweeping Instagram called the “shelfie.” Apparently, tastemakers everywhere are taking pictures of artfully-arranged shelves and posting them to social media with the hashtag. What do you think of the trend? Is it a fun way share your personal style or does showing off your possessions make you seem shelf-ish?

Design: Brian Patrick Flynn | Photo: Rustic White Photography

JESSICA: I’m a hoarder and lacking in shelf space (read: furniture), so looking at people’s neatly organized shelves is very relaxing.

KAYLA: I’m one of those people that rearranges my bookshelves once a month, so seeing peoples “shelfies” gives me ideas for placement. (I had no idea that was a thing, though.)

DAVID HAYNES: I’m with Kayla. I’m all for seeing what other people are doing along these lines and I will happily cherry-pick and plagiarize their ideas. However, I’m more the type in search of the Holy Grail of shelf arrangement, so once I have a shelving strategy and display theme I’m happy with, it’s likely to stay that way to the end of time.

MARIEL CLARK: Here’s a trend I can get behind. I love being inspired by real-life design and bookshelves are such a great reflection of individual personality and style. I probably won’t share my own “shelfie” right now since mine is a study in juice boxes, train sets and baby blocks. But I will eagerly flip through others’ perfectly arranged shelves and dream of one day having just the right bookends that will pull the entire shelf — no, the entire room — together.

FARIMA: I love a well-decorated shelf, and I truly think it takes talent to design one perfectly. Saying that, the closest thing I have to a bookshelf is an electric blue China cabinet that I’ve decorated minimally because I hate dusting!

GRANT: I enjoy looking at what folks put on their shelves. I, myself, shared this photo in February of last year. Shelfies can even give you a bit of insight into someone’s mental stability. Hmmmm.

shelfie trend

KAYLA: I totally see where you’re going with that, G. My books are organized by genre, like at the bookstore, then deeper — fiction murder, fiction romance, nonfiction current events, nonfiction bio, etc. It’s the only way I could ever find what I’m looking for. That’s also how my mind operates…

LILI: Best “shelfie” of all time:

Do you like the shelfie trend, like this example from Covet Garden? Vote now on HGTV's blog!

Covet Garden 3 | Photo: Tracy Shumate

Though I really loathe the term “shelfie,” I do love looking at other people’s books.

DAVID: Agreed. A well-accessorized indie bookstore or (or record store) is my idea of heaven. This, on the other hand — which is evidently a new pet visual with the retail-space designers for Anthropologie — is, in my view, heresy.

Do you like the shelfie trend? Vote now on HGTV!

This is just a minor sample. I’ve seen window displays with rows and rows and shelves and shelves of books turned spine-away. Granted, it’s a bold visual statement and all that, but as a bibliophile…come on! Whose books are we not seeing the titles of? Fitzgerald? Tolstoy? Kerouac? Welty? I actually took this picture with the phrase “trends that cannot be defended” running through my mind.

JESSICA: David, that spine thing has been ~killing~ me lately. Just thinking about it is getting me all fired up. It’s like saying, “Hey, I own books!” [insert applause emoji here]

MEG ALLAN COLE, HGTV HANDMADE: Lili, that one is incredible! I LOVE seeing inside people’s home and getting a glimpse into how they organize and arrange their favorite things. Shelves are where it’s at, so if “shelfies” are a new thing, I’m into it! But spine away is NOT OKAY.

KAYLA: Preach, David!

DAVID: Do you feel it, brothers and sisters!?!

MEG: Speaking of shelves, my husband just about died of envy seeing this.

DAVID: I just fell off my chair.


Do you like the shelfie trend? Vote now on HGTV's blog!

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  1. Eric 1 year ago

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  3. Tony-Splendor 1 year ago

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  4. Brody S 1 year ago

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  5. _marky_mark_ 1 year ago

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