Built-in Bookcases

Thursday, December 15, 2011

A few months one of my girlfriends mentioned to me, she's planning on adding built-in bookcases to her living room for more more storage for books, movies pretty much 'life stuff.' I loved her idea and started emailing her inspiration ideas, to come up with the perfect bookcase style for her home. Not too much later it dawned on me, that's what our living room needs! I started gathering ideas for 'our bookcase style.' 

I drew up some plan drafts on paper, then finally on the computer. Here's what I've come up with so far. The lower section of the bookcases would consist of cabinets. Which is the perfect spot to hide clutter: DVDs, DVD player, cable box etc. The top section would be a mix of long shelves and a middle section a spot for our TV. The TV would hang inside the bookcases / on the wall. I want to bookcases to be floor to ceiling, wall to wall. 

My bookcase plans are very rough, nothing is drawn to scale { right now } and no measurements have been taken { yet } But this is the overall idea of how we want them to look. We want the bookcase to be placed where our current TV and Ikea bookcases are now. It makes the most sense and its the perfect spot in our living room for them. I like the bookcases we purchased from Ikea awhile ago, however it just makes more sense to have built-in ones. I found the image below via Pinterest and love the simplicity and style of the bookcase. I want ours to feel clean lined and have faux feet, like in my sketch above and in the picture below. I think the chunky feet style really give the feeling of a more modern clean lined look.

{ via Pinterest }

Another example of how I want the feet to look on the bookcase. 

We decided to DIY our bookcases after seeing how amazing Sara via Russet Street Reno's turned out. Yup, Sara and her husband built the bookcases themselves! Lovely, huh! It really adds to much appeal and style in our 'Woman Cave

Our plan is to do a mix of ready cabinets for the bottom bookcases { like Sara did } and the top make 3 - 4 long bookcases depending on measurements for the upper portion of the bookcases. My sketch below is an example of the individual upper bookcase unit we would build. Each bookcase portion then would be connected to the cabinets. 

After we tweak our plans to achieve exactly the style we want ( with measurements etc.) the next plan is pricing and cabinet shopping for the lower portion of the bookcases. We'll be doing a lot of price comparing to get the best deal. Here's a picture of in stock cabinets from Lowes 36x30

Here's a look at how our living room currently looks. Can you see my vision? Floor to ceiling bookcases with long thick shelves and a perfect spot for our TV to hang.

I'm really looking forward to this project and the amazing transformation of our our living once its completed. I know they'll be many hours of sanding, painting, cutting and screaming { me } But I can feel the end result will be amazing!

Can you picture it? 



  1. Nice project, can't wait to see the transformation.

  2. I can picture the lovely shelves especially floor to ceiling! The shelving will also be a much safer option with a little guy running around and pulling himself up on furniture. I have some basic bookshelves but they may be a hazard. I hadn't thought about built-in bookshelves! I can't wait to see what you come up with.

  3. That is so exciting! I love built-ins and am hoping to have some myself someday. =) Yours are going to be gorgeous! Can't wait to see how they turn out.

  4. It will look great! Can't wait to see. Good luck!

  5. I am looking forward to the transformation.

    ~Mrs. Delightful

  6. I stumbled across your blog and can I just say that you are awesome. I absoultly LOVE everything you have done. I bought a 1950's ranch about two years ago and am steady decorating and doing projects. Your ideas ares such a inspiration!!! Best of luck on the built-ins and thanks for sharing.

  7. I love it! We did a built-in in our living room and it's so fun. We still have to get the shelves up (slackers), but it's so handy to have all the storage. My dad actually built the base and tied in the original baseboard trim. Then, we found some great solid doors at ReStore and added those to the openings.

  8. Kim, I love your built-ins!! Perfect! :)

  9. YES! We love our bookcases. Have loads of fun building them, it is really satisfying when they are all painted and finished. You will be so happy with the finished project!

  10. I can't wait to see the finish product...have fun with it!

  11. Sara, I adore your bookcases they came out perfectly! I so looked forward to every update post! :)

  12. Built in bookcases sounds like such a good idea! It seems like they make the rooms appear bigger! Can't wait for the after pics! : )

  13. Yes, I can totally see your vision! What a great project this will be. I would love love love to have built-in bookcases somewhere -- maybe in our basement once we really start finishing it!


Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts! Best, Katrina

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