For years I stored my cookbooks on a shelf in my pantry.  In the last several years, I transformed my formal dining room into a “lady’s lounge.” It’s a quiet and inviting space for reading or gathering with friends. I put two large bookshelves from World Market on one of the walls and decided to display not only serving pieces, and cake pedestals, but also my cookbooks.

Cookbooks are much more than reference books, they are works of art. They make perfect coffee table books. Sometimes I like to just prop cookbook on a stand on the counter in the kitchen to inspire me with a photo of beautiful cupcakes. Or, I will stack several on the kitchen counter with a plant on top.

One trick for organizing your books is to sort them by color. I take off the book’s jacket and file the cover away if I decide to donate the book later. The spine of the book brings out the pretty colors.

Speaking of donating, here is an article on five ways to recycle cookbooks you no longer want.

I usually try to donate a book when I bring a new one to the shelf.

Here’s more inspiration from my Pinterest board on the ways you can use books to bring color and interest into a room.

Apartment Therapy

The Home Edit

Stray Dog Designs

I also use chalkboard bins to sort my books by category – Let’s Bake, French cooking, What’s for Dinner. A calligrapher friend, Megan Clegg, lettered the bins for me.

And I love this idea of putting cookbooks in a basket on the counter with a few wooden cutting boards.

The few last tricks, stack books next to a chair or sofa to create a twist on an end-table.

Or pile them on a coffee table, especially if they are all one color scheme.

Driver by Decor

The point is, use your cookbooks like art, share them with guests, and open the pages to reveal the beauty inside.