Jamie’s Bookcase Dilemma: Practicality or Design!?

Working for a design magazine is amazing as I get to look at stylish furniture and homes all day–in addition to blogging, Facebooking, and tweeting! I recently did a blog entry about my favorite modern bookshelves and I started thinking about how I love practicality in bookshelves but I also like ultra stylish, and sometimes funky, design when it comes to bookshelves. Clearly, I love having a place for all my books to fit but I don’t want any old bookshelf that compromises my style and love for good design! Here are some awesome bookshelves that I love–some are practical and some are clearly not! What about you? Do you prefer practicality or design? What do your bookshelves look like? How many do you have? Tell me all about your shelves!

Here’s a preview of my picks on the magazine’s blog. You can go there to see them in detail. You should see some of the prices on some of these beauties!

Here are a few of the other bookshelves that I thought were interesting!

Trilogy Staircase Bookshelf from Smart Furniture, $399: This one is pretty practical and is one of those great spacesavers! It would look so cute in a little loft underneath the stairwell!  I’m in love!

Boogie Woogie Shelving System seen on Hive Modern: My boss owns these and they are awesome! You can stack them and adjoin them and apparently if you put them together it makes for a 3-D effect!

Ptolomeo Rotating Bookcase seen on The Conran Shop, $3795: These remind me of the rotating DVD shelves at my library. I love that this is a rotating shelf and it looks like it can be easily tucked into a corner somewhere.

Odersoding Modular Shelf System seen on Ding 3000: These ones are just funky! It seems like depending on how you set them up is how the geometry of the shelving will be.

**Be on the lookout for my top 5 crazy bookshelves, kids bookshelves and wall mounted bookshelves**

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About Jamie

Jamie is a 30 year old married lady who is in denial that she’s actually that old. When she’s not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, listening to music with oversized headphones and having adventures with her husband and dog.


  1. tediousandbrief says:

    I really like the Trilogy Staircase Bookshelf.

    There was one bookshelf I saw somewhere online that had a space cut out so that a person could sit in the bookshelf, but it looked more like art than anything functional.

    Two of my books cases are 3 level Sauder ones I got from the store and had to construct. They're pratical, but I also have quite a few books.

    One of them I have I got from Bed Bath and Beyond a number of years ago and it folds up, making moving with it easy (especially needed in college).

    Another of mine is currently not in use because I'm not sure where to put it. It was my small tv stand, but is a 3 level book case that you can screw together without the aid of any tools. It used to be in my dad's office and is really cool.

    I have a bunch of other bookcases that I inherited when a relative passed away. They were actually built by my grandfather and have glass doors. Sadly, they almost all have to be refinished since they were slightly damaged in a flood we had.

    I look forward to your posts on the top 5 bookshelves. What do your bookshelves currently look like?

    Tedious & Brief

  2. I LOVE that rotating bookcase.

  3. I am definitely not a modern design kind of girl. I prefer my old, antique looking furniture.. but I have to say that staircase book case looks fascinating!

  4. I love all of the bookcases you selected here, but I'm a DIY kind of girl. My boyfriend and I make all of my bookcases and I paint them with cool nature designs. Another great thing about this is I get control over what materials we use, mostly recycled wood, and I know where everything comes from. Plus they are fairly simple but can always get repainted for a new look, so we can use them anywhere we move. Since I'm moving a lot at this time in my life that's really important to me.

  5. Have a great weekend! Hope you come visit and follow me too 🙂 Shauna from http://www.trying2staycalm.com

  6. Tedious and Brief– I saw two that had the cutouts! They are crazy! I like the sounds of your bookshelves! Mine right now are pretty plain. I'll have to post mine sometime!

    Jillian– Oh, don't you worry. I do love old bookshelves, too! I don't know how the heck I'm going to figure out how to decorate my house. I have too many styles I love. The other magazine I work for deals with the Arts and Crafts movement in America so I get to see all these amazingly built wooden bookshelves!

    Ash-That's awesome! That sounds like something my bf and I will do. We are broke so these are my "if I had a really stylish house and lots of money to spend" bookshelves 🙂

  7. I tend to be a bit more about practicality. I am all about wood bookshelves. But hey, at least the modern ones are pretty.

  8. I'd love to be more about design, but now I'm more about practicality. Right now we have 5 boring wood bookcases scattered throughout the house. They are each overflowing with books so I either need to be on the hunt for another one or I need to stop buying books.

    I love that X bookcase, and the trilogy staircase one would look so wonderful with great photos next to it filling it in. And of course I have to "need" the almost $4,000 one!

  9. I'm all about function personally but I love looking at the design-y ones. They'd make me go a little crazy if I had them in my place, but they're so pretty.

    I love looking at this tumblr page that's nothing but bookshelves. Bliss!