How to Create the Perfect Home Library

by Alex ThatcherFebruary 13, 2017

Tips for Designing the Perfect Home Library

Nothing showcases a homeowner’s unique personality like a home library. Much like a home’s bedroom, the library is somewhat of a hidden sanctum, where only those most trusted are granted entry. This room is often sublime and comfortable, rich-textured, and filled with possibilities.

Of course, dreaming about having your own home library and actually building one are two different things. For many, not knowing where to start stalls their dream before it can become a reality. Luckily, we have some tips that will help you get started on the library you’ve always dreamed of.
designing your home library

Choosing the Right Room for Your Library

When it comes to choosing a room for your library, there are some considerations you’ll want to keep in mind. For instance, you want to avoid putting your library in your basement or attic, as these areas can be prone to high humidity levels and this type of environment will eventually warp and damage your beloved tomes.

You’ll also want to avoid using a room that receives an abundance of sunlight because the sun’s rays can damage your books, too. If you have a sun-drenched room that you think would make the perfect library, then you can still use it — just install some heavy drapes to help tone down the natural light.

Getting Your Books in Order

Before you can start building your library, you need to know how many books you have and how you want to display them. For instance, do you have enough books to warrant floor-to-ceiling bookcases? If your collection is smaller, then you might want to use open-shelving for a more modern look.
designing your home library

Choosing the Right Color Scheme

What do you see when you think of a home library? Is it a room filled with darker, richer tones like browns, greens, and burgundy, or is it light, bright, and airy? What you envision is what you should strive for. As long as you’re happy in your space and you’re able to relax, then you have picked the perfect color scheme for your home library.
designing your home library

Securing Your Bookshelves

Books can get quite heavy when they’re stored on a shelf, so you need to ensure that your bookshelves are attached to the walls for optimum security. If you aren’t familiar with securing shelves to wall studs or CMU walls, then you might want to contact a professional to secure them for you, especially if you live in an earthquake-prone part of the country.

Make Sure the Floor Can Support Your Library

If you’re designing a large library, then you need to make sure your flooring is capable of bearing the load. This isn’t as serious a consideration for a first-floor library as it is a second-floor library, so if you’re planning your library to be on the second floor of your home, you should definitely bring in a contractor to make sure the floor can support all your books, the bookshelves, your furniture, and everything else that’s going in your library.
designing your home library

Choosing the Right Lighting

Much like in a museum, choosing the right lighting is crucial in a home library. Ideally, there should be multiple types of lights in a library, from table lamps to accent lighting to overhead lights and more. You may even want to add some specialty lighting to showcase certain pieces of art or a sculpture. Remember, odds are your library will be used for much more than reading. It’s where your family will go for everything, including playing board games and relaxing with a cup of hot cocoa.

There really is no right or wrong way to design and build your home library. The room serves as the perfect representation of who you really are, so put yourself into it and you’ll love it no matter what.


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About The Author
Alex Thatcher
Alex is a home staging guru who moonlights as a writer. She loves everything about interior design and loves working in the industry. Alex is an expert in finding what makes people light up when they walk into a room, and has made a living by creating interiors that are unique, warm and inviting. When she isn't arranging flowers or making sure she's found the right loveseat for prospective buyers, she writes about her passion — home design.

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