Hampstead London NW3Transitional Living Room, London
What Houzz contributors are saying:
Range up and overShelving can be built in so perfectly that it becomes an intrinsic part of the walls themselves. Take it around and over a doorway and it turns into an architectural framing device for what lies beyond. The designers of this space have gradually reduced the space between the shelves from the floor up to accommodate most book sizes. There’s not much wasted space here – every shelf earns its keep with maximum storage.
What if I don’t want to see my doors when they’re open?If you want to hide your doors away when you open up between your rooms, a popular trend is for ‘pocket doors’. These slide away discreetly into a counter frame within a stud wall, only to be seen when you want to alter the dynamic, function or intimacy of the room by closing them. They are top-hung, which means the floor is left free from obstruction, so there’s no perceivable change in the flooring, allowing the rooms to flow freely into one another. The key to the smooth operation of a pocket door is in the preparation and planning, especially if you’re installing it in an existing home, as you’ll need to think about what services and pipes might already be inside the wall cavity. It may be that there are easier ways of achieving this if it’s a more flexible space you’re after.
Where do you stand?So there you have both sides of this papery debate. Now it’s your turn to weigh in…Tell us… Which way do you store your books, and have any of these arguments changed your mind? Let us know in the Comments section.
Include more space for storageNow this is a room design that shows how to squeeze every last drop of potential out of a compact floor plan. The double pocket doors tuck right back into the wall to allow full access to the living room from the hallway beyond without impacting on the floor space. The tuck-away doors also clear the way for bespoke shelving up and over the doorframe.View more shelving ideas
Decorate with booksYour collection of paperbacks and hardbacks – whether modest or grand – is one of the biggest reflections of your personality and can bring instant colour to a room, so ensure that it’s one of the first things you unpack. There are so many creative ways to display books, for example the ingenious fitted shelving in this living room not only provides plenty of storage space but also serves as a frame to the entrance hall beyond. Get creative with invisible shelves, wall-mounted wine or apple crates, and even colour-coded arrangements to create a large vignette.
BooksA key decision with shelving for books is whether to opt for fixed or adjustable shelves. Fixed shelves have the advantage of creating in-built, visual harmony. Adjustable shelves mean that each shelf can be positioned to suit books of differing heights. This might be important where space is limited and every centimetre needs to be maximised. Shelves 60cm wide will work well here and allow a single book to be removed without the rest collapsing. Adjustable shelves wider than 60cm run the risk also of sagging under the weight of heavy booksNext is the matter of the types of books to be stored. Most books fit happily on shelves 23cm deep. And most books, including paperbacks, need a clearance (ie, the distance between each empty shelf, measured vertically) of just 23cm, with a clearance of 30cm accommodating all but oversize books. These need shelves 30-40cm deep and a vertical clearance of 50cm.While you’ll need to fine-tune the dimensions to suit the context and visual appearance of the shelving, good all-round dimensions for fixed shelving would be a depth of 23cm and a clearance of 30cm.10 of the best bookcase ideas on Houzz