Living With Books


Wall to Wall: Create a contemporary library in your living room with a wall to wall, floor to ceiling collection of books. Avoid a cluttered look by keeping the furnishings in the room to a minimum. The books themselves will add colour and character. If you have many books you will need to adopt some form of basic organisation by author or subject – in order to put your hands on the book you want without too much difficulty.

Over and Above: In rooms with high ceilings there is an opportunity to extend shelving above doors, taking advantage of wall space that would otherwise go to waste. You can also design the bookcase so that it can incorporate different sized books, speakers, artwork and CDs but it is important to keep a sense of order to how everything is arranged. Shelves can be painted the same colour as the wall so as to keep the look simple.

A Quiet Corner: Add interest to an otherwise dead space with a custom-made bookcase. A quiet corner of a room can be transferred into a reading area with the addition of built in shelving. Keep the look organised and streamlined by ensuring the shelving is the one height and width. A low shelf can be extended out to create a bench with interesting niches underneath to stack more books.

Stack Em High: Awkward or forgotten spaces like hallways or underneath stairs cam make an excellent home for your book collection. A tall column of shelving can make good use of the small space between the doorways of two rooms. Books and magazines stacked flat one on top of the other will the display a more sculptural feel. When arranging such a display such as this put heavy and less frequently used books on the bottom shelves and more regularly used items at eye level, within easy reach and be careful not to overstack, leaving some space between each shelf.

Bed Fellows
Those who like to read in bed often find piles of books accumulating haphazardly on the floor. Shelving them underneath the bed is one alternative; another option is recessed shelving cut out of the wall. These shelves form part of the architecture of the room and can display books both horizontally and vertically and can be interspersed with artwork. Painting the shelves a neutral colour really makes the objects on display stand out.

Work Smart: Be clever about how you store your books. If you have a large collection of books, you may want to work out a system for organising or grouping them (such as by author or topic) that makes them easy to find. It’s best to store very large or heavy books flat and on the bottom shelf. Stop your favourite reads from getting shabby or falling apart by covering them in some snazzy wallpaper- samples are easy to come by, not to mention free! Any valuable books are best kept out of direct sunlight to ensure that they don’t get damaged at all.

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