Building a {Home} Library

“I can never get a cup of tea large enough
or a book long enough to suit me.”
-C.S. Lewis

We LOOOOOOOOOVE books here at our house.

I mean … love!

When a used book sale is on the calender, we’re all counting down the days with high anticipation!

After hitting two homeschooling book sales in the past few weeks, the bookshelves in our home were overflowing.
A beautiful sight – but also really annoying and messy. I literally had books doubled up row by row on one bookshelf.

Now, we have this little room attached to the girls’ room (which they all share) that has been labelled a “playroom” (I have always disliked this name – and I do not like the idea that a whole room would be devoted to toys?! Insanity! We also don’t like that overloading feel of so many toys …. yuck) and a “nursery” but it really was neither. Just an extra room that we used for the girls. We’ve always talked about having our own library room but the thought of building built-in bookshelves was utterly daunting.

So while staring at the cluttered bookshelves in three different rooms, I decided to bring a majority of the books into this extra room to create a home library.
Dragging up two completely ugly laminate bookshelves from the basement was no easy task, but I was hoping with a little elbow grease, we could add the bookshelves to our upstairs library room.

This is what the bookshelves looked like when I started:

Ugly, drab and boring!
They were an eye sore and I have always disliked them. So, like everything that is not my style, it was time for a spray paint redo!
{I tried priming it but the primer would not stick on the laminate at all….}
After a few coats of white regular spray paint, I began painting over it with regular white paint. It took many coats and it was not perfectly done but it looks a lot better than when we started!
{IĀ  bought a piece of crown molding at the hardware store and Abby added it to the top of the shelves.

He added trim down the middle to connect the two bookshelves together.}

And with these shelves, we have the making of our own home library.
The girls love it and have been re-discovering books they completely forgot about!


Not all the books are in the room yet, but this is far as I was able to get organized.

{This was taken with a wide angle lens so the room appears bigger than it really is but this was the only way to fit the room in my lens.}


{I’d like to put up feature books every now and then…}


I still have four more bookshelves on the main floor but this is what I manage to do so far.
My plan will be to swap out last year’s homeschool books and
put them in the library as I am ready to put out the next school year’s books.


Here is a {free} bookshelf I dragged in from an old barn and painted. It’s solid wood and perfect height for little ones’ book collection.

A darling, pretty piece of fabric was found at a local thrift store – I was thinking it would make a cute cushion cover for the rocking chairs in the Library.

I’m pleased to see extra room on the shelves – which means, more books may be added!

It is nice to have a majority of the girls’ books in one area as it helps me feel a bit more organized for school and less scattered.
We have also arranged them on the shelf according to subject, etc. I know that won’t last long but it was fun seeing how many books were in the science section, the animal and wildlife, history area and so forth.

We have so many wonderful classics that I could never bear to give away or toss away such great books, even if we have already read them.

How do you manage all your books? If you homeschool, do you keep your books or give away when your children are finished reading them?

June 23, 2015 - 2:04 pm

Rachel I have that same princess-piggy piggy bank! I turned mine into a Prayer Pig. I write little prayers of request or gratitude on little pieces of paper, fold them up, close my eyes, feel the prayer (as Anne Shirley might, hehe!) and pop them into the pig. Mine’s full now and this post has reminded me I have to empty her out and start over! šŸ™‚

June 20, 2015 - 5:44 am

admin Heather, wow, that sounds amazing! Thanks for thinking of us! Wish I could pop by and pick it up today!
Maike, thank you!
Melissa, I want to sit in there all day too! Looking forward to a rainy day of reading!

June 19, 2015 - 11:21 pm

Heather Love the little glimpse into your sweet room for the girls. Wish you lived closer because I have a century-old white painted cradle that needs TLC. It was my grandma’s and I no longer have room for it. Perhaps you have a space for it? If you’re ever in the Oakville/Burlington area, leave a comment on my blog and it’s yours šŸ™‚

June 19, 2015 - 2:44 pm

Maike Wow, your house looks so very pretty, whimsy, and full of love. I adore your simpel handmade famr life so much. If you ever need a helping hand there, I would be there right away. It’s the life I have always dreamed of and I love reading your blog. <3

June 19, 2015 - 9:09 am

melissa it looks so dreamy!! i could sit in here and read ALL DAY LONG!

June 19, 2015 - 8:20 am

Brenda (Gigi’s Mom) Gillian, that looks so AMAZING!! What a great job … you are very resourceful and creative!! Way to go, ….. xoxo

June 19, 2015 - 5:46 am

Gillian Thanks, ladies!
Yes, a vintage section of fabrics would be *AMAZING*!

Jen, the chandelier was here in the house when we bought the home … however, I have found many at garage sales or online on kijiji – sometimes they need cleaning up and painting, but it’s not a hard project.

June 18, 2015 - 5:58 pm

Erin Lynn I love their beautiful room! Great job on the bookshelves, and I think that creating an environment that is conducive to reading and learning is key to homeschooling. Such a fun post, love to see how you decorate your “nest.”

June 18, 2015 - 10:21 am

Our Home Of Many Blessings I have a really hard time giving books away.I will always share them and give one to a friend when they would like one but just our old books that we school with or have had for years I just can’t bring myself to get rid of have a huge love for books as well and have 7 children,so our books have really stacked up through the years.I love your house!!So sweet and lovely!!!We have a similar set up of books galore and redone shelves including a little place for tea!;) I am always looking out for shelves that need a little touch up!…I think that fabric is beautiful!We have this sweet little fabric shop that’s a few hours down from us that is just simply wonderful!A sweet older couple have owned and ran it together for almost 40 years…..they try modern but have that wonderful old fashioned vintage line of fabric that I am madly in love with.I always stock up with yards of it when we pass through!

June 18, 2015 - 9:30 am

Jen Heemskerk what a great book display! Your home looks so lovely and dreamy! I love the pink with the wainscotting and the most perfect chandelier! Where do you find them all?