The books in this library were extremely colorful, almost as if they'd been [...] to fit the contemporary feel of the library.

Maybe hand-picked? That's the only word I can think of. But I'm not sure whether it's a suitable choice.

  • 'designed' is a possible and not just with its most obvious meaning. oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/design Do or plan (something) with a specific purpose in mind: Aug 7, 2015 at 16:12
  • I've been trying to work out how something could be other than 'deliberately' chosen. But the word is not redundant here. It means specifically: The books in this library were extremely colorful, almost as if they'd been [deliberately chosen / chosen specifically] to fit the contemporary feel of the library. Now I have to work out why the position changes. And why 'hand-picked' works while 'picked' sounds weak here. Aug 7, 2015 at 23:14
  • carefully chosen / as if someone had them ordered through a catalogue or an interior design magazine
    – Mari-Lou A
    Aug 8, 2015 at 5:30

1 Answer 1


I would use 'hand-selected' over 'hand-picked' in this case, but I think either would work. Perhaps also 'cherry-picked' or 'curated'?

  • Thanks for the answer. Just one question: why "selected" works better than "picked" even though they basically have the same meaning?
    – wyc
    Aug 7, 2015 at 15:33
  • 1
    @Patrick, earn respect and applause by editing your excellent answer to include a definition (e.g. past tense: selected; past participle: selected carefully chosen as being the best or most suitable) and a reference (e.g. dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/british/select ) [please swipe and paste to make your own edit]
    – Hugh
    Aug 7, 2015 at 15:36
  • 2
    Selected implies a careful or thoughtful choice. Picked is more casual, intuitive.
    – Hugh
    Aug 7, 2015 at 15:38
  • Is this a real example? Who picks books on the basis of their color? Yes, I know the noveau riche used to order books by the yard, literally, to populate their shelves. Off-topic, but it had to be said.
    – ab2
    Aug 7, 2015 at 23:34
  • @ab2 you'd be surprised how many color coded bookcases there are see also: google.it/…
    – Mari-Lou A
    Aug 8, 2015 at 6:05

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