Over time, home libraries have changed shape, colour and even function. Today we will dedicate some time to this kind of furniture, to bookcases and shelving. Winter is coming and it is not difficult to imagine evenings in the living room, curled up on our beloved sofa next to the fireplace enjoying one of our favourite writers. On those dark nights, we want nothing more than to dive into the pages of a Márquez romance, a Hemingway adventure or one of Dostoevsky’s detailed descriptions. The best literature passes through our hands, but then where does it go? To our beloved library of course.
Bookcases are getting more and more creative and spacious, even as the dispute between e-books and paper books is more alive today than ever. In our opinion, perhaps e-readers make sense to save a bit of space, but to reduce your entire library to a digital instrument sounds absurd: book collections are made to preserve and, when on display, even to show who we are and what we prefer. The books on our shelves can say a lot about us as people. There are a thousand reasons why we continue to love print publications despite the availability of everything online: the smell of paper, the signs of ageing on the pages, a history of physical objects, books that make us come back to the mindset, place and period in which we were reading them. On the other hand, completely ignoring the technology is stupid. So let's see the e-reader as a useful tool in some situations. For example, if you are an avid reader of the Harry Potter saga, it would be very difficult to fit these books in your suitcase when you travel, and so, in this case, such an invention can come to your aid and help you avoid overloading your luggage.
We are, however, still fans of having large libraries at home, but we also appreciate small and simple solutions. Here for you is an overview of all the new ways that the bookshelf is becoming a piece of furniture that lends itself not only to accommodating only books, but also to housing any of a number of objects. This is the shelf for everything we love to exhibit: the photos of our first family vacation, our karate trophies, small souvenirs from vacation in Barbados, or that object so dear to our grandmother. After all, inside each of us is a collector, especially of emotions and memories.
A long history that has brought us to this example, a project of architect Beatrice Pierallini. Here, levels and shelves alternate endlessly, creating a special shelf that you can fill in with time. This shelf is installed in a beautiful apartment in Florence that contains 6,000 books. The large scale keeps this peice from being a good choice for every home, but it has some interesting ideas: the ladder that allows you to get to the top moves along a rail embedded in the ceiling as if it were a sliding door. Below, a platform offers additional storage space.
Do you want to save space with a unique idea? This wall unit is thin enough to be closed in an instant if you no longer need it folded down. The open mode reveals a set of shelves big enough to accommodate books and plants and has a pleasant surprise: a small desk space that can be useful in a very limited area of the apartment. The chair also folds flat so that it can be stored out of the way when not in use.