mix accessories with books. (Just keep the paperbacks in the bedroom or someplace inconspicuous.) If you don't own books, buy some at a yard sale or library sale — they do wonders to warm up a room and are one of the cheapest accessories you can find.
A shelving system like this would serve as a great desk/breakfast bar! I would just hide most of the clutter in cute storage bins, have a lot more plants, and make the desk (laptop) space wider (to suit 2)
The rug in this room really balances out what could otherwise be a top heavy display of books. Well, done-- http://www.mariakillam.com/2012/11/10-easy-ways-to-look-smarter-right-now.html?utm_source=feedburner_medium=email_campaign=Feed%3A+colourmehappyblog+%28Colour+me+Happy%29#