It's a wonderful problem for a book lover to have - finding a place to store all one's literature in a manner that is both efficient and beautiful. In this piece I share some ideas for homes large and small that are both functional and stunning.
One can never have too many books. Ever. In fact, a home without books is like a home without art. It lacks warmth and dimension and intellectuality. Books serve a multitude of functions, and when displayed in bookshelves, on coffee tables, even in carefully curated piles they completely transform a space. Like art acquired for collections or from travels, books are another form of creative expression in home decor. Some homes are large enough to house separate office spaces and libraries, many are not. Smaller homes can find multiple uses for rooms, a dining room can be transformed to a working library. Who wouldn't love to dine amongst a hundred books? What a conversation starter that would be! Guest rooms can double up as home offices with book-lined walls. Attic spaces and dry basements can be completely transformed to become unique libraries in their own rights. Add some shelves to a window nook. Remove the doors from a large closet and line it with shelves. Create book nooks in corners, in lofts, in kitchens, bathrooms, and hallways. Some homes have large built-in bookshelves. Others do not. In the past I have created walls of books using inexpensive book cases from Ikea, they can be painted or remained untouched. I love the look of books piled on tables - coffee, end, and dining... Do remember to dust them frequently! When it comes to displaying the books, the possibilities are endless as long as we can step out of the proverbial book box!
Art and books always make a perfect pairing and give a living room a personal, homey feel.
Books displayed on a long table and on a wall add another element of texture to this industrial loft.
A hallway gets a magical transformation with bright paint, decorative carpeting and a wall of books in brightly lacquered shelves.
A small book nook is created in a wall, surrounded by artwork to create a stunning and simply home office.
Books carefully displayed horizontally and vertically, interspersed with art in a wall of black shelving creates a casual sophistication.
A spare room is transformed into an office and library. Again art and books marry in an elegant black wall of books.
The popularity of black bookshelves is not lost on me and perfectly shows how versatile this look can be.
Don't be afraid to let your books become a room's focal point. Here the eyes are drawn to the colorful shelves and the portrait that takes center stage.
Inexpensive bookcases are pushed together to create a look that looks much more elegant than the simple white structures actually are.
Line the walls of hallways, lofts and landing places to maximize the use of space in the home.
The above photo shows just how piles of books can be visually stunning.
If you don't have enough books to fill a wall, create a special corner dedicated entirely to them. Shelves look better completely filled than half vacant if they can't be filled in with pieces of art and other objects.
Multipurpose: a library, a dining room, a home office. Beneath the shelves of books cabinets can contain all sorts of office apparatus. Talk about maximizing space!
An all season porch becomes a dining room lined with books. Can you think of anything better?
A home office becomes a guest room filled with books and a cleverly placed Murphy Bed!
I hope this piece has left you with some inspiration as to how you can decorate with books!