Next, please welcome Beth @ Beautiful-libraries.com, a site of beautiful libraries, indeed. Beth shares her personal inspiration behind the site, and a love of libraries that, as she so rightly points out, connects us the world over.
Here’s the story… of a lovely library site…
by Beth @ Beautiful-libraries.com
I have always loved libraries – as a kid, my favorite place was my elementary school library filled with books and beanbag chairs; my parents, university academics both, always had a large collection of books. One of my earliest recollections is waiting for the Bookmobile to park and climbing aboard to choose among the children’s offerings.
As an adult, I assumed I would always be surrounded by books and dreamed of the cozy home library I would someday have. The first thing I did when my new husband and I bought our first house in 1998 was to design and build a wall of four-foot-high shelves in an upstairs room to create an office/library. Those shelves filled up fairly quickly.
The following year, I ran across an article that left a deep impression on me: In the July 1999 issue of This Old House Magazine were photos of a truly magnificent home library addition to an older house in Hatfield, Massachusetts. Since I was reading a public library copy, I returned the magazine, but over the years my thoughts returned often to the magnificence of that home library. About five years ago, I searched online for that back issue, which became the start of a binder I kept of beautiful home library photos, which I added to as I found other impressive library portrayals in Architectural Digest and other magazines, as well as online photos.
Two years ago, my husband, two children and I, well-settled into our third and (we hope) permanent house, and running out of space for free-standing bookcases to hold the 5,000-or-so books I had managed to amass, decided that we might like to build our own library addition.
I immediately began looking through my binder and looking online for inspiring photos of well-designed home libraries, and found, to my surprise, that although several sites had lists of ten or so library photos, no one had yet compiled an extensive collection online.
Thus began Beautiful-libraries.com, a site dedicated to inspirational photos and information about libraries of all kinds: private, public, academic, commercial and many other types – including Libraries in Art and Libraries in Film, naturally!
I have now added over 600 photos and still continue to add more, whenever I have a moment (and we’ve finished our own library addition too, BTW). I try to accompany each photo with information about that library, and personal observations and commentary about its design. And I have received photos of libraries from visitors around the globe, from Europe to Africa to Asia. The love of beautiful libraries is universal.
Many thanks to Jennifer, for her permanent link to my site as well as for giving me this chance to do a guest blog here at Reel-librarians.com. I hope you find a moment to visit and enjoy Beautiful-libraries.com.