My Favorite Bookcase

26 Jan

There’s something really magical about a bookcase. It’s a very telling glimpse into someone’s personality both by what’s on it and how it’s organized, and it can be a wonderful conversation starter when you discover books you have in common, shared favorite authors, and copies of new titles you’d like to read sitting on someone else’s bookshelf. When given the opportunity, bookcases are one of my most favorite things to look at in a person’s home (tied with the art on their walls).

About five years ago when I was living in San Francisco, I dreamt of the bookcase I’d buy when I finally settled somewhere. It was at the top of my furniture wish list (you can bet I had a list), and I even drew a picture of what I wanted in my sketchbook. This is the sketch:

When I moved to Birmingham and knew I’d be staying awhile, the bookcase I’d drawn was the first piece of furniture I began hunting for. It took months of searching, but I finally found the perfect one in a local antique shop that has since gone out of business (Crestwood Antiques for those who may be curious). Here it is in my old home (left) and my new one (right). It’s a pretty close match, don’t you think?

As I mentioned briefly here, this piece of furniture houses memorable tchotchkes from our travels, most of my favorite books (my Jane Austen and Armistead Maupin collections, some of my favorite art and illustration books, and other life-changing books I’ve read over the years), and my favorite magazines (a complete set of Cottage Living, copies of Domino, a handful of How magazines, and the new and utterly gorgeous Anthology magazine). It makes me uncommonly happy when I look at it.

And for those like me who enjoy browsing a little closer, here’s a shelf-by-shelf look at what makes up my list of favorites. Maybe you’ll find some common titles or ones on your to-read list. If so, let’s chat. I love talking about books.


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