On the shelf


Shelves, this week I have been slightly obsessed with shelves. I love my books, although I completely accept most of them I will never be read again. I like to see them on shelves. I like to look at them and remember the stories, remember when or where they were read. One day I hope that maybe some of them might be read by my son. I love the colours of their spines across the shelves.

I hate books in boxes, it bothers me. Over the past few months, I’ve become slightly obsessed with shelves. Since being reunited with boxes of books in storage, I am itching to get them onto shelves and madly pinning images of shelves.

First of all I thought we’d simply built shelves across the alcoves either side of the chimney breast. Then we debated at length, should this be in the front room or the back room. Then I decided that no, that wouldn’t do. I wanted book shelves for a different wall altogether. The chosen wall, although perfectly capable of part holding up a ceiling, isn’t, apparently, capable of supporting shelves. This is demonstrated to me several times, via a sharp tap with a finger joint, it sounds different to the other walls. It looks perfectly wall like to me, not wall enough for shelves on the scale I desire. Next, hours of family life are lost to furniture websites, only to decided most book shelves are ugly (apologies to book shelves, that’s just my opinion).

So to eBay for older bookshelves, secondhand, sorry ‘vintage’ as thing on eBay seems to be described as. Merrily I clicked ‘watch’ on enough bookshelves to re-furnish the local Public Library, none of them really suitable. Then I went back to the wall in question, it isn’t square to the room. Not unusual in a Victorian terrace. I wonder if the bookcase I have in mind (which as yet does not yet seem to exist) will sit neatly along it.

Bookshelves in the alcoves are the way forward, I decide, firmly, back room (probably).

This decision-making process does not bode well for the all the interior decisions to be made over the coming months. Is it just me?


  1. Molly

    I don’t take too long to make decisions, but I’m desperately impatient to get it done once said decision has been made. Can relate to clicking “watch” on loads of stuff on eBay though. I do that too! x

  2. Becky | Spirited Puddle Jumper

    Nope, it’s not just you. I am currently in a similar predicament, with the need to choose and buy some new shelves for our living room, but not having the brain capacity to make a decent decision, or time to buy the bloody things- really want them in place before Christmas decorating commences! I too have loads of books that will never be read again, but I like the option of them being there, and the fact that I think books just ‘make’ a home 🙂

  3. Grenglish

    I can’t decide what to do with our house either, change my mind every day over most things apart from shelves actually. We have book shelves in every room, some built in, some free standing, some piled on the floor but all full of proper books that most probably will never be read again but, like you, I love the colour of their spines. I love the stories they hold within and I would love my son to one day pick one out and read it. Just today I spotted The Magus and was instantly transported back to the beach in Skiathos where I was when I first read it.  

    1. helloitsgemma

      wood, screws, drill. probably. the other person in the house does it here, although I have put up shelves before now. ‘perfect’ wouldn’t be an accurate description but they worked. 

  4. Annie @ Simple Wanderlust

    I LOVE shelving! We are in the process of replacing our floor to ceiling IKEA Billy bookcase wall with homemade chunkier shelving made from reclaimed scaffold boards – totally Als idea too!

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