I’m a book snob. I would never enter someone else’s home and make a judgment about how big it is, or what kind of artwork they have. But I’d be happy to make a judgment about their books.
It’s not that I’m impressed with signed first editions, the classics of world literature, or leather bindings with gilt lettering. What I value are eclectic, carefully-edited personal collections where each book is a well-loved thing.
If quantity doesn’t figure into my equation, quantity certainly does. The more books the better, because books make the most excellent decorations. My living room bookshelf, which is still only two-thirds full, is the true heart of my home. So it’s inspiring to see all the amazing personal libraries in “Books do Furnish a Room” by Leslie Geddes-Brown. There are some great ideas that I might steal for myself if only I had the space, and the books.
Having bookshelves in the bedroom means you never need to jump out of bed to find something more to your liking, or drop a book inside the covers as you’re falling asleep.
Why not keep books in a low case near the bathtub?
This is something every kitchen should have; a small case for cookbooks and notebooks.
A lot of designers like arranging books in stacks. I see the appeal but don’t really understand how you reach for a book at the bottom of the stack. Don’t the stacks fall over? And don’t they collect dust?
I also don’t understand why anyone would want to keep books behind closed cabinet doors, glass, or chicken wire, unless they’re super valuable and can’t be exposed to dirt and dust. It’s like putting them in a coffin.
The rooms I really love are the book-caves, where all four walls of a room are covered with groaning, full-height bookshelves that could collapse on top of you at any moment. It’s obsessive and suffocating and romantic. You can imagine someone sitting at a desk in one of these room writing a scathing letter to the editor, a love sonnet, or the Great American Novel. You know that people who lives in rooms like these love their books.