Arched Bookcases

My home office is separate from, but still open to, our new living room. It's sort of around the corner.

In past homes, we've liked having one or two bookshelves in our living room for some of the prettier/nicer books. In this apartment, I think we're going to try and make my office like a library and put all the books on a couple of big shelves (maybe with a ladder??). I'm meeting with a contractor sometime this week who will be building some walls in our very open apartment. And I'm hoping he can make the walls in my office floor-to-ceiling bookshelves - that will probably be way out of the budget though.

If we can't get the floor-to-ceiling numbers, I might just get a couple boxes of Billy's with the extender shelves. Wouldn't it be cool to add this arched detail for a more custom look? I think it would be an easy DIY with some 1/4" MDF and a $35 circular saw.

An even easier take away idea is the great paint job - white exterior with black shelves and shelf backs. Looks dramatic, but still clean.


Belly said...

I Love your MDF idea! We have two arched built in bookcases in the LR, done with decorative profiles (molding?) and they were surprisingly inexpensive.

pve design said...

Alright, we must have been cut from the same cord...I have a weakness for scallops....and for books and black. One can never go wrong.
Do it and then show us... FYI -I also love back to back book shelves as dividers to make a wall in open lofty spaces.

Gretchen O. said...

Sounds like so much fun to redo your new digs...hope everyone is settling in nicely and you all are enjoying NYC! --Gretchen O.

Mary @ RoomPolish said...

oh yes Jenny, that sounds fabulous! ARched bookcases would be beautiful. Sounds like you're having a blast getting your apartment all ship shape!

Kelly Galvin Robson said...

It's so great to have you back, Jenny! We've missed you! Can't wait to see what you'll do with your new place. Congratulations on the big move!


Courtney McG said...

I like the white with black interior idea. How about wall or contact paper on the inside to separate the "room" even more?

welcome back! Enjoy NYC.

Sam said...

ooo, i'm drooling over those arches! rooms of books make me giddy. love, love, love.

Cristin @ Simplified Bee said...

My parents have built-in bookcases with an arch. Love them!!!


Splendid Sass said...

Love the entire room. The shelves are gorgeous.
Have nice day.

A House and Home said...

hmmm...interesting idea. Just saved that photo to my inspiration files for my new office/library. Thanks for sharing.

Sierra said...

I lined my painting studio with Red Billy book cases and I love how it instantly transformed the space into a library. Arches would be divine, i can't wait to see what you come up with!

Katherine @ Grass Stains said...

Agreed! Black and white are contemporary and clean ... and dramatic. Love the look!

Katie @ Katie Beth Interiors said...

What a great idea, will love to see if you decide to go through with it!

Valerie said...

Congrats on the new place! I just repainted my whole house and did something like this in the office too, but with dark green instead of black, it looks fantastic! Would love some arches at the top too, but alas, the ceiling is slanted with the roof line. P.S. Welcome back!

Deanna (Silly Goose Farm) said...

We just remodeled our home office and added a wall of built-in bookshelves with a little window seat. So charming. However, we are thinking of adding more built-ins to our living room (once we remodel) because we have so many books (14 years of college and post-grad education between my husband and I makes a lot of book inevitable)!

SteFay said...

I have a weakness for anything book shelf related, so I love this idea! The black is a great background too. Thanks for sharing and if you decided to try it, we want pictures!

Semigloss Chic said...

Jenny, I faced the same challenge with built-ins and ended up using the Billy's with the extenders. Here's a few tips if you go that route:

1) I cut notches out of the bottom of the Billy's so they would fit flush against the wall even with the bottom molding

2) I also used inexpensive crown molding around the top and then along the seams between each and it looked perfectly custom--except for those pesky adjustable shelf holes. I tired wood filler in white, but it wasn't great

3) I used one of the skinny Billy's against an adjoining wall to create a 'wrap' effect to look more built in. It worked, but in the future, I would plan on some kind of extra side panel or molding for the facing side to make it look less modular.

Can't wait to see your results!


Revival said...

Jenny - Did you ever try this? I bookmarked this post for a future "project" and am thinking of tackling it. I'd love one of your step by step "how to" guides.
Happy 2011!


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