Sunday Salon 61: Double Stacked Shelves

Posted 15 April, 2012 by Trish in Crafty, Reading Nook / 58 Comments

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Good morning lovely people!!  Remember how I told you a few days ago (or months)  that I was working on redoing my bookshelves? Well, I’m pretty close to being done but my “read” shelf was really starting to stress me out. I had to remove a stack of books before shooting the below picture just so you could see the chaotic mess. (don’t mind the blurry shots…).  I already filled one bin of books and sent many to the library for donations and have another stack that I need to mail out to a few of you (I’m sorry…)

I simply can’t get rid of any more of these books. Not even the loathed Brothers Karamazov. But last week Lisa came to my rescue when she pointed to a Good Housekeeping article about cleaning/organizing your home library.  The last slide in the article is all about maximizing shelf space by making two rows of books on the shelf and raising the back row of books so they’re still visible.

Duh! Why hadn’t I thought about this before?!

So I asked Scott how he thought I could accomplish this. I decided that the size of a tissue box would do the trick and he said he could make me some shelves pretty easily.


Basically he cut a five inch wide plank and raised it with little stands. Again, sorry for the blurry picture below. And because of the structure of my shelves (the front framing), the mini-shelf is a bit smaller than the width of the main shelf, but Les Miserables and Our Mutual Friend helped bridge the gap.

10 bucks for four shelves AND Scott got to use his power tools. Win Win.

So now I have a raised row in the back and a lower row in the front. Seriously–how simple and genius is this? It’s terrible to stack books like I had been (bad for the spines…though you can tell from the books below that I’m a reformed spine cracker) and now all the books are visible without me having to rearrange.

Gorgeous, huh?

Now, with my shelves it really only works with the paperbacks, so the hardcover books will continue to have their own shelves, but this definitely buys some more space and is much better looking than the chaotic stacks in the first picture.

One step closer, y’all. At the rate I’m going, I might even be able to have these shelves organized by next Sunday (rolls eyes and laughs head off…).

Do you have any fun shelf organizing tips? 

What’s going on with you this weekend?

58 Responses to “Sunday Salon 61: Double Stacked Shelves”

  1. Great idea. Although I’d probably stick some smaller paperbacks under that mini shelf. When there’s a space I will fill it.

  2. Kay

    Good job and, as you said, a simple solution. And if you truly can’t get rid of any more of these, it a win-win. Tidy and compact.

  3. *Thank you guys for all the comments! It definitely helped for the space issues–though I don’t know for how long! ;) And Linda–I’ve thought about sticking something under the mini-shelf as well. Ha!!

    And if you’re wondering, I did gain special permission from hub for the picture and caption. He’s a great sport, though.

  4. Go, Scott! I would have never thought of this! Your bookshelves look great. I’ve been rearranging my bookshelves too and I can’t get rid of any more books. It’s time to actually read what I bought. Ha! Maybe this summer. How many cases do you have left to organize?

    • Vasilly – I have three more individual shelves to organize (not big shelves). So almost there! Plus need to organize my “classics” section a bit–maybe by double stacking.

  5. Great idea! Just a shame this wouldn’t work for me as my books are already doublestacked all the way to the top. I’ll have to get rid of some and then get my husband to work his magic :-)

  6. That photo and caption of your husband is a riot.

    I LOVE the idea for the shelves! There’s going to be a LOT of rearranging and stuff going on once the boyfriend moves in this summer, so I may borrow this idea for our books. :)

  7. Is it weird that that picture of Scott really makes me want to drive through Dallas on the way to Alabama? (Hi Scott!)

    That is just a brilliant idea. The little miss must not have access to that room, if the books just stay on the shelves. My books are on the floor daily, I don’t even try to make them pretty any more.

  8. *Thanks guys!! I have to admit that I was a bit amused while creating the picture of Scott ala Ryan Gosling. Ha!!

    Lisa–Come on by!

    Michelle–maybe you saw the pin I made from Good Housekeeping?

    And feel free to use the idea! Wasn’t mine originally. Thank you Good Housekeeping! ;)

  9. Neat shelving idea. We bought 5 new book shelves in the past year, but still have stacks of books on the floor. Must read faster or read my own instead of the libraries.

  10. Brilliant!

    And I can’t believe you still have The Brothers K in your house. Mine got booted so fast it’s probably still wondering what happened.

  11. That picture of Scott made me laugh out loud. Hey girl… And the idea is genius! They are looking great. A little at a time, and before you know it, they will be completely organized!

  12. Another idea you can consider stolen…I mean, borrowed. Showed Hubby and he was almost as excited as me. Thanks for sharing.

  13. Thank you for your comments!! I can’t help but just sit an admire the new shelves. I hope that you can make this work for you as well–I think even using tissue boxes would make the difference. The original article noted aluminum foil boxes but that didn’t seem to give enough rise.

    And yes, I think I’ll keep Scott around. ;)

  14. Genius! Like many of us bookaholics, I’m always searching for ways to maximize shelf space . . . though I’m happy to say that someday, when I change residences, my boyfriend has a ton of Borders’ former bookcases that are EMPTY. Empty! I freak out every time I see them, just fantasizing about schlepping all my novels over there. I think he’s going to come home one day only to find my entire book collection in the living room. . . (And he keeps gently reminding me, “Your books can move in when you do.”)

  15. That’s a fantastic solution. I don’t have many paperbacks but if I did, I’d want something like this! (If I did it with my hardback collection I think the shelves would bow from the weight)

    • Jeane – My hardcovers are too tall to do this so I’m only able to do for about three of my shelves, but it does help!

  16. Wow. That is AWESOME. What a great idea.

    I used to hate cracked spines. I went out of my way to keep them clean as a baby’s bottom. However, now, I like the character that a cracked spine brings to an old paperback. It drives my wife nuts but I don’t care anymore. Give me a well worn paperback over a new one.

    • Pax – I’m the opposite–if only because the cracked spines don’t bode well for re-reads or lending. ;) I try not to crack them anymore but I also won’t shun a well-loved book.

  17. Les

    Brilliant!! And so nice that you let your hubby lend a helping hand. Love the captioned photo. :)

    BTW, Boy’s Life (Robert McCammon) is one of my favorite oldies. Have you read Swan Song? It’s similar to The Stand (Stephen King).

    I organized a bookcase this weekend thanks to having part of our dining room repainted. (Had a plumbing “issue” last summer and finally got the drywall repaired and thus, the walls and ceiling repainted). Anyhow, I had to move one of my huge bookcases and after we moved it back, I decided to go through all the books we had shelved on it. It’s full of biographies, history books and all of my cookbooks. We got rid of TWO (2) books. Two. We’re pathetic.

    • Les – I haven’t read Swan Song nor The Stand! (trying to organize a readalong of The Stand this summer). Loved Boy’s Life, though!

      And I’m with you. It’s near impossible to give up books, huh?

  18. I am SO doing this. My husband doesn’t do power tools so I’ll need to use old aluminum wrap boxes, but I’m sure it’ll work. Thanks for the great idea, now I won’t have to get rid of books for a while longer! :-)

  19. Fantastic idea! Love the picture and caption of Scott. Too funny :) enjoy your “new” shelves and don’t buy anything to fill in the gaps.

  20. *Thank you all for your comments! I’m glad you also like the idea–it was a major *headdesk* moment where I wondered why I hadn’t thought of that before. So simple yet…

    And Scott says thank you for the compliments on the photo. Ok, he doesn’t really but I imagine he would if I asked him…

  21. wow, what a brilliant idea, I should ask my husband to do this, only hes not so accomplished at woodwork than your husband :)

  22. Amazing idea! Some of my shelves are a bit too low to do the raised platforms but I can manage a few. Now I shall have less hidden books. ;)