Bookcase Envy


Posted by Rebecca, January 11th, 2011

When we bought our house, included were these columns in between our dining and formal living rooms.

I stole that picture from Mike’s speaker files, since he still hasn’t posted about it and they’re nice daylight pictures. So please ignore the sloppy curtains and the speaker template taped to the column. I once asked him to take some daytime pictures of our bedroom and he took a picture that included his dirty clothes on the floor, so let’s consider this an improvement 😉

Anyway, here are a few more shots of the columns, which were technically part of the upgraded trim package we were given as a result of a crappy real estate market.

I know some of you will cringe at this statement, but we’re not crazy about them. They’re nice, but they’re just not our style. We were considering asking for a credit rather than having them put in, but we did want the extra wall piece between the rooms, so we decided to keep them around. Before we even closed on the house, we were scheming up things to do with the space. Here’s a vintage lil house pic from shortly after the columns were installed, nearly a year ago…

What a crazy difference from the first picture in this post, huh??

My first idea was to do some sort of a stone column, maybe a brick type or dry stack to compensate for the fact that new homes have no exposed brick. So long before we moved in, Mike photoshopped some stone columns into this picture.

He even stuck some wainscoting in there, which we had installed the day after closing 🙂 Nice to see one idea come to life! We thought we could maybe even stick some sconces on those stone columns and make them feel all warm and fuzzy.

Then just Sunday, I sat on our JetBlue flight home from Disney watching HGTV. Isn’t JetBlue lovely?? You can just sit there and watch tv! Anyway, I did fall asleep due to exhaustion and woke up to a reveal of a room on Designed to Sell. I tapped Mike and pointed to my screen (he had headphones on too) and he nodded back in approval. Lucky for you guys, I found an image of what I saw on

It’s small and hard to see, but they built bookcases in the space between the rooms. Genius!! I am currently loving built-in bookcases after seeing Sara’s bookcases over at Russet Street Reno and Young House Love’s bold painted bookcases. Though I’m still thinking of places in our house where I can replicate Sara’s project, I’m thinking some bookcases in between our living and dining rooms could be an inexpensive, happy compromise to both issues… my bookcase envy and my column hatred.

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16 Responses to “Bookcase Envy”

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by, Rebecca. Rebecca said: Always scheming up new ideas 🙂 […]

  2. Cait @ Hernando House says:

    That sounds cool!

    We’re working on making a “build in” in our library, but we need to get more Expedits from Ikea… someday.

  3. Heather says:

    I saw that same episode on HGTV and I absolutely LOVE the bookcases! Definitely go for it. I am with you on the collumns. I think bookcases are definitely more timeless and you can display the books you love and switch them up if you want to. Fun! Keep us posted. 🙂

  4. Can’t wait to see what you craft up! I too LOVED what Young House Love did – so adorable!

  5. OMG BECCA! Wait- hold the phone – do you like being called Becca or am I secretly pissing you off on a daily basis? bahaha! let me know! please! I’ll make up another nickname for my bloggy bff if need be =)

    so anywho – bookcases all the freaking way!! I know its probably not possible… but couldn’t you just have a contractor kick out those columns and install lovely bookcases for you? What would that even cost anyways? haha

    I love the IKEA room dividers that are half bookshelves half divider… have you seen those in the catalog? I’ve dreamed about them for years but its always a question of where the heck would they go!? You have a GIANT house so i’m thinking something amazing is in the works for you <3


    ps: HOORAY FOR WHOLE GRAIN GOLDFISH! I'm on restriction. I can only get them every other grocery trip unless I want to be found in the closet with an empty bag…. =) kidding. sort of

    • Rebecca says:

      Haha Becca is fine, I’m not picky with my name

      I know the columns are definitely just decorative because they were put in after all of the framing and drywall was done. We probably won’t do anything with them for a while (since we still have drywall in our bedroom that isn’t primed!) So we’ll have some time to research/figure it all out. One thing that’s good is that our base wall is much thicker than the HGTV picture, so our bookcases will be much chunkier! Yay!

      ps- I packed a small snack bag of goldfish to bring to work as my afternoon snack so I wouldn’t eat the whole bag. But I ate them before 11am. Then I was starving and came home and ate like 3 handfuls of them. Portion control fail

  6. michaela says:

    I love the bookcase idea! Whatever you chose to do will be amazing!

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  8. Gillie says:

    Just thinking about yr idea of introducing bookshelves next to your columns………..The side showing the books’ spines will look great, but what about the revers sides…..all those uneven pages etc!!! Or will you enclose the shelves so that they are only visible frm the book-side??

  9. Mary says:

    what is the name of the grey color used in the final pictures?

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