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Blog: Organizing Small Spaces
Storing Books in Small Spaces

Skyline Bookcase - Wood Bookcase, Tower Bookcase

Skyline Bookcase, Levenger
If you love books, like I do, and  live in a small space (like I do) , one of the big challenges you'll face is how to find room for storing all your books. The skyline bookcase from Levenger is one great option. In one square foot of floor space (6' tall) this bookcase can store up to 100 books on its nine shelves and it's slim footprint allows you to place it almost anywhere.
spine wood bookcaseThe spine bookcase from West Elm is another skinny possibility, with a base no wider than a large book.  Almost 6 ' high it boasts 10 shelves, however you do need to store your books horizontally.
Slim bookshelves are not the only place to store books. Look for furnishings that can serve a dual function such as a headboard with built-in bookcase  or a platform bed with shelves underneath.  Consider a coffee table with space for storing oversized books or an end table with shelves. With the use of bookends, books can also be stored on top of kitchen cupboards or an armoire or a windowsill.

Of course before you start piling those books up, be sure that they are books you love, plan to read or refer to again, and/or would want to have available to loan to a friend. All the others should get passed on for someone else to read. A personal library should be personal -- just the books that you love, need, and read.

My best book storage solution in my small space is my library tote bag -- it allows me to bring in as many new books as I like without having to worry about long term storage and if I need them again, I know just where to find them in their online catalogue. 
Happy Canada Day to all my Canadian readers!  Take the day off and celebrate with a great read.


posted on: 7/1/2008 8:00:00 AM by Joan Kosmachuk
category: Clutter

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Organizing Small Spaces

by Joan Kosmachuk

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About Joan:

Joan Kosmachuk is a professional organizer and personal life coach. Born in Toronto, Canada, Joan moved to Boston in 2005 and lives in a less than 800 square foot apartment in an old brownstone with her husband, Jerry, and their papillon dog, Duke. In addition to organizing, Joan loves to read, write, garden, travel and spend quality time with her family and friends. Check out her website for additional articles and tips on making room in your home, head and heart for the things you value most.

Joan's Website:


TV Shows I enjoy

  • Small Space, Big Style on HGTV
    This show makes me dream of living in an even smaller apartment just to see how creative I could be.
  • Mission Organization, HGTV
    We all know it doesn't happen in a half-hour, but this show does do a great job of showing just what can happen when a professional organizer works with a willing client. Magic!!
    Sadly you can only catch repeats of this one, but Helen was my first on-camera organizing coach and as I told her when I met her at the POC in Toronto last year, she was an inspiration!!

Books and Authors I recommend

  • Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh
    timeless inspiration
  • Freedom of Simplicity by Richard J. Foster
    one of the best books I've read on finding harmony in our complex world
  • Getting Things Done by David Allen
    Finally a time/task management system for those of us without "regularly scheduled" lives
  • Cry, the Beloved Country by Alan Paton
    a beautiful novel on every level
  • Leaven of Malice by Robertson Davies
    because it makes me laugh everytime I read it (and he was a fellow Canadian)
  • 84 Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff
    if you love books and you love reading other people's correspondence, you'll love this book
  • Lewis, Tolkien and MacDonald
    three fantasy writers who make life magical for me
  • John Piper, Oswald Chambers, Richard Foster
    for spiritual exhortation


  • Home Goods OpenHouse
    Such personable interior designers with affordable ideas!
  • Small Space Style
    wonderful ideas for decorating small spaces
  • organizing LA
    nothing like seeing the world of organization through the eyes of Hollywood -- John does a great job of keeping us East-coasters up-to-date on the West Coasters.

Poets who speak to me

  • Jane Kenyon
  • Anne Lindbergh
  • Jeanne Murray Walker

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