A beautiful home library – Photo Courtesy: Nannette Turner
I’m one of those, whose universe start with books, ends with books and revolves around books. And I think this is quite a common feature with every bibliophile. You love the feel of the pages against your fingers, the smell of an old book, falling asleep in a book’s embrace and feeling proud about your ever-increasing pile of books. And, you’re definitely not ready to move over to e-books yet. So, naturally, the first thing that crosses a book-lover’s mind while looking for a home is, having a dedicated area just for books.
That said, the most common problem that arises is – space. In this age of matchboxes for homes, bibliophiles are facing times of living nightmares. But if devouring over all those books have taught us anything, it’s that – ‘Nothing is impossible’ – including making space for your precious books. Here’s how:
This is the most common and probably the simplest space-making technique known. Nothing works as simplistically as built-in shelves. If you have an empty wall that could be used for something more constructive than just being a vacant wall, turn it into a mini-library. Not only do they save up on space, but also make the area look neat and organized.
Floating desks are known to create an illusion of a bigger room. It also adds a unique and quirky touch to the room. And since the floor space is saved, you get to make a lot more additions that were otherwise seemingly impossible.
Right: Mondrian Floating Desk System – Photo Courtesy: Jeremy Levine
Your bed, dining table and other pieces of furniture usually have a lot of space in the base region. Your bed, in particular, offers a lot of space. Make a separate section for books in that empty region. Of late, there is a lot of quirky furniture that come specially made to ease storage of book! You can either get yours custom-made or check for the availability in nearby furniture stores.
Yes! These are, I think, the most incredibly smart storage spaces. And, they also form an amazing piece of artwork! Imagine, you have a visitor and you’re showing him around the house. Finally you reach the staircase and when he realizes that he is staring at books stacked between the stairs and also between the railings, there are going to be only two expressions – the jaw-dropped look on his face and the smug look on your face.
Closet under the stairs:
When stairs are mentioned, how can the closet under the stairs be too far? What is usually used to store brooms, cleaning supplies and other not-used-frequently things, can also be used to keep books, unharmed and undisturbed from unwanted visitors. This can be also be used as your private room meant strictly for uninterrupted reading. If you’re running out of space for the cleaning supplies et al, then make sections or allot specific spaces in the closet. A little smart and efficient compartmentalization will take you and your books a long way.
Left: Closet under the stairs – Photo by tracylinuxgeek
Corners are far more useful than most of us give it credit for. Often left as the ignored part of the home, corners work marvels for those in need of extra space for their books. Corner shelves and racks don’t stand out like the usually placed shelves, but, they serve their purpose quietly and efficiently, without cramping your home any more than it already is.
You don’t need a mammoth sized mansion that threatens to blow your budget through the roof, to fulfill your bibliophilic fantasies. A good look around your home, a little smart-work and creativity, will suffice just as perfectly.
Shawn O’Hara is the author of this article. He works for Capital Building, a company famous for its artistic and elegant home designing in Melbourne.