How to Organize Your Personal Library with Dewey Decimal System

In case you have a collection of books, like 100 or more, it is advised for you to organise them before placing them on the shelves. You might be considering of organizing by topic, size or even colour. However, the best way to organize the books is to place them like libraries do. For this you need to learn the Dewey Decimal System. This system is used to organize the books in several libraries around the world. You can use a card catalogue or computer list to find a particular book quickly.

Things Required:

– Books
– Paper
– Pen
– Labels
– Label printer (optional)
– Clear packing tape
– Internet access


  • 1

    Sort the books

    You need to separate the books in two categories, fiction and non-fiction.

  • 2

    Check the non-fiction books for organizing

    You need to look inside the non-fiction books for checking the copyright information. This copyright page will most probably be located near the front page and it includes information like publishing information, copyright information and cataloguing information. Going further down, you will see numbers which represent Dewey Decimal classification of the book. In case it is written 202.3, then you can use this number along with writing the first or first three letters of author’s last name. If the writer’s last name is Cruise, you can write 202.3 C or 202.3 Cru on the label. This will be of great use in case you have many books on the same topic.

  • 3

    Write the book’s number and paste the label

    You need to write the book’s number on the label and then paste it on the spine of the book. You need to place the label about two inches higher from the bottom of the spine. In case the spine is too thin, you can place the label on the bottom left side on the front. After placing you need to cover the label with packing tape. By this the label won’t peel off.

  • 4

    Be creative for books with no cataloguing information

    You should be creative when dealing with books which have no cataloguing information. In case you have two books of cooking, then you can use same numbers for both but with different authors’ initials. You can also check the Dewey Decimal number of that book from your local library or internet and jolt it down.

  • 5

    Fiction books

    For fiction books, you need to use the author’s last name. You can jolt down the full last name or first few letters for identifying.

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