Custom bookcases are popular, whether you’re a certified bibliophile or haven’t read a book for pleasure since Ramona the Pest was the hottest story in the schoolyard.
Books are innately calming and provide elegance and intimacy to any room. Every book is unique, and you can arrange them by color, genre, author or however you like. Unfortunately, many bookcases aren’t nearly as unique, which is why so many homeowners are asking for custom bookcases with character that still serve a utilitarian purpose.
A custom bookcase can be a “built-in,” which can seriously up a home’s value, or it can be a stand-alone piece that you can move around the home or take with you should you ever sell.
Arranging a bookcase can make a huge difference. It can look cluttered, or it can look like it belongs in a home design magazine. However, it all starts with the bones (or, in this case, the bookcase).
Custom Bookcases as a Foundation
Choose a high-quality wood, and a stain or paint that will really make your books pop. A light-colored stain or paint in the white spectrum provides a contrasting frame for books. Light colors are clean, bright, and can make a room look larger while also complementing baseboards and crown molding, since they are commonly white.
Alternatively, a dark, rich, wood stain harkens back to those luxurious home libraries of yore.
If you’re creating an actual library in your home, sometimes you need to indulge your inner book geek and go with a mahogany or deep cherry wood stain. These also frame your books and make a room look more intimate and cozy. Add in a custom fireplace mantel and you’ll make your entire book club jealous!
Styling Your Bookcase
Dress up the back of your bookcase with a gorgeous wallpaper/shelf liner or custom paint job. Just because the frame of the custom bookcase is a classic color doesn’t mean you can’t play with the back! Wallpaper is relatively easy to swap out, so go ahead and use that daring pattern or color.
Your bookcase is a layer — the back and frame are on two different planes, and your books and your tchotchkes are the final, top layer. Complementing instead of matching colors (flavors) is best.
Stack your books in various ways, put them side by side, arrange them by size or color-coordinate them. No matter how your books are aligned, try to keep the stacks to no more than seven books. Any more and it looks like they’re being crammed onto any available shelf space.
Let Your Bookcase Breathe
Many people are tempted to fill up a custom bookcase, and that’s a mistake. Space is paramount, plus it lets you show off your bookcase.
To get started on your own custom bookcase design, contact Swirl Woodcraft, and team up with an expert.