All the Pretty Bookcases

tip-turned-bookshelf Anthropologie

My favorite piece of furniture in my bedroom growing up was my three-shelf bookcase. As an adult, the bookcase is still supreme in my apartment…and the total count is five. Unfortunately, the bags of books on the floor signify that number six needs to join the family.

Finding a bookcase is not nearly as easy as one would think, especially when one wants the bookcase to look good. If I see one more basic brown wooden boxy bookcase or a ladder bookcase made infamous from back-in-the-day Pottery Barn…well, I won’t do anything rash, but I will frustratingly close the Internet browser.

In my childhood bedroom, I sponge painted my three-shelf bookcase with purple and yellow paint. In my first apartment after college, I sanded and painted two tall bookcases sea foam green. In my latest apartment, I was almost to the point of getting a simple white bookcase and covering it with removable wallpaper. Luckily, a friend who was moving donated her enormous white washed plank bookcase to my book storage cause.

fashionable bookcase

I’ve always thought that the bookcase should have just as much character as the books within them. (And I admit that I also arrange my books by size and color…don’t judge.)

So I have compiled some bookcases and bookshelves to provide some inspiration for your next display case. I admit, the one below I actually have been coveting for years. I even asked my brother (who is a contractor) to build one for me. I believe the response was something along the lines of, “That’s way too much work for books.” The horror!

decorative bookcase

So..what say you to a Bookworm bookshelf? It’s available in three different lengths and is both flexible in shape with high resistance, allowing a load of around 20lbs. for each support. Take that, Goldfinch.

Short: 7 bookends: 126″ w | 7.5″ h | 7.8″ d
Medium: 11 bookends: 204″ w | 7.5″ h | 7.8″ d
Long: 17 bookends: 322″ w | 7.5″ h | 7.8″ d

bookworm bookshelf

And even though we all love our books on open display, don’t overlook the bookcase with drawers. Case in point! This red beauty features 15 removable bins and is crafted of iron with a distressed red painted finish. It measures 54.5″ wide x 15.5″ deep x 60″ high and you can attach magnets to it! I had you at magnets didn’t I?


Inspired by storage equipments used by musicians on tour (already hooked you, I know), this Industrial Loft Furniture Collection represent rustic, vintage style with a twist of modern appeal. Each bookshelf is crafted from FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified recycled teak wood, polished aluminum frame and rivet details with an avant-garde style raw finish and contrasting wood panels for a rustic look and natural feel. An ideal bookend would be a bottle of scotch to complete the rock star vibe. Maybe lean a guitar up against it for when you try to impress a potential special someone.

hipster bookcase

This bookcase would totally solve my “I have too many magazines” problem. Well, at least partially.

bookcase magazine rackSo this number may be a wee bit too Dr. Seuss for some people. However for other people…it’s the cat’s pajamas.


If it’s still too out there for your taste, this blue bookshelf from Target is a nice compromise.

blue-bookshelfFor those in small spaces, look no further than the Sapien Bookcase!

By holding texts horizontally in a vertical stack, the tall Sapien can accommodate up to 70 small and large books in a very compact footprint. (The shorter bookcase will hold up to 50 books.) The removable shelves are a mere 2mm thick but each one can hold approximately five books, or an impressive 5.5 lbs. The tall Sapien has 14 shelves, the short has 10. When fully loaded, the bookcase virtually disappears behind the books. All-metal construction and a heavy, weighted base ensure the design’s strength and stability.

Plus they look really damn cool.

sapien bookcase

Want more (because you know I didn’t stop here)? Check out our Bookcase Pinterest Board! Do you have a bookcase crush? Post it to our Facebook page or tag us in your own pin on Pinterest.

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Rachel Yeomans
Editor at Lit with a Twist
I'm a writer, reader and dreamer. I'm proud to be the editor and creator of Lit with a Twist. My co-editors, Ella and Fitzgerald, can't be trusted. Probably because they're cats.
  • Wendy

    I loved this post. All the pretty book cases! Makes my hardware-store “on the wall” boards look plain. :)

    • Lit with a Twist

      Thank you so much for the lovely comment, @indigoskye:disqus! And trust me, I feel the same way about my home bookcase collection. The next one needs some pizazz!