Do you love to read? Having bookshelves is one thing, but imagine having a Library? Sounds grand, doesn’t it? Well, it could be within your grasp, and more easily than you might imagine. Book nooks can be intimate but not necessarily private.

Image courtesy of Lib Horton and Co Designers

Image courtesy of Lib Horton and Co Designers

However a peaceful room totally dedicated to the fine art of reading… now THAT’S a dream room for those of us who love to collect books. So have you ever thought about turning a spare room into a library?

Some people use a spare room as… well, a spare room for guests. Others use them for a study, a studio for art, a sewing room or even a dressing room; so why not a library?

Image courtesy of Cartoloji

Image courtesy of Cartoloji

And there are just three simple steps for turning a spare room into a Library

Step One: Choose the Room

Most rooms, except utility rooms, are perfect for turning a spare room into a library. Extra bedrooms or even a dining room make fabulous choices. You may even have a converted patio or enclosed courtyard that would suit this different purpose. Just ensure there are no leaks, rising damp or other potential for water damage as this will surely ruin your dream.

All you really need are;

  • Wall space – shelving can be attached or free-standing
  • Floor space – for big cushions and other comfortable seating
  • Peace and quiet – if possible, choose a room that is away from the main family living areas
Image courtesy of Chloe Warner

Image courtesy of Chloe Warner

Image courtesy of Matarozzi Pelsinger Builders

Image courtesy of Matarozzi Pelsinger Builders

turning a spare room into a library

Step Two: Construction

The beauty of books is that they are their own art. Display with coloured spines to the viewer or open up picture books and display the contents. You really only need to decide if you want built-in or free-standing shelves.

If you can afford to hire a carpenter then purpose-built shelving is the way to go. You can even have shelving over door frames if the ceiling is high enough. This adds to the cosiness too.

Consider the style and tone of your library by choosing natural wood, white or painted wood or even glass. Will there be predominantly books or will you also display object d’art?

Do you want the room to be light, airy and fun or dark, gothic and moody?

Image courtesy of Butler Interiors

Image courtesy of Butler Interiors

Image courtesy pf Paul David Architects

Image courtesy pf Paul David Architects

How will you furnish your new library? There are a few basics I can recommend.

  • A 2-and-a-half-seater or chaise lounge is ideal for stretching out
  • A comfy chair with ottoman or footstool to relax
  • A small table to have a place for your cup of tea… or glass of wine

Consider lighting. You’ll need to see what’s on the shelves and read from your chosen chair

Image courtesy of Lighting Design International

Image courtesy of Lighting Design International

Step Three: Decorate

When turning a spare room into a library, think not only about the books but also art and objects you love to fill your new space. Wall-to-wall books look too dominating so break them up with objects and wall hangings. Consider objects with a literary theme such as framed book covers, antique printers blocks, scrabble, metal letters or even an old typewriter.

Now, your once disused room is a literacy retreat. And you can bet that on the first chilly night you’ll be in there with the first of many good books. But be careful; it could become everyone else’s new favourite room too.

You might also like to read the Beauty of Books… and Reading Nooks or Things of Stone and Wood, and Are Men Taking More Interest in the Bedroom?

Have you transformed a dull room into a Library? What did you do? Are you happy with the result? Would you LIKE to try turning a spare room into a library?

Image courtesy of Krieger and Asssociates Architects

Image courtesy of Krieger and Asssociates Architects

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