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Red Panelling and Bookshelves

It all started with Roald Dahl’s Danny the Champion of the World.

This is the book I can first remember reading as a child that truly drew me in and captivated my imagination, and from that point on I’ve always loved books. They’ve become something of a passion of mine (some say an obsession, I still say passion). Today, my bedside table holds a tower of books ready and waiting, that occasionally I thin out, but I like to have options. I have tried the twenty-first-century equivalent, which makes sense in theory, just one small tablet-size object to pack and take on holiday, not four large hardbacks.  But you know what, for me, it’s not just the content of the book, it’s the whole deal – the cover, the feel of the pages, how they look lined up on a bookshelf…

 

The Turleigh Bookend

 

And so, it’s the art of storing, displaying and housing these wonderful objects that has kept me enthralled for nearly 20 years (if we’re being honest, it’s actually longer than that, the first piece of furniture I ever made at about the age of 12 was a table constructed of old pallets that held my Beano annuals but who’s counting?).

Customers have continuously commissioned me to design, make and install bookcases in various guises – long low ones, tall thin ones, ones that run up and over doors, bookshelves that fit into impossibly small spaces or span an entire wall of a library. The lengths I have gone to handcraft storage solutions for books is a testament to my customers’ enduring love of books. I was once even commissioned to design and make a reading chair, which was devised solely around the ergonomic position required to lounge comfortably and read. The armrests were positioned so the book could be held with support at the right height and angle, making head position and eye level comfortable; it was a beautiful chair, and sadly I don’t have one myself. Maybe one day…

Biblio Chair by Charlie Caffyn

 

But I have kept a few of my own pieces that have been designed solely with books in mind. Books stowed on a high up-and-over bookcase in my sitting room are easily accessed using my Iford Library Chair which ingeniously transforms from a chair to a set of steps (plus it’s an extra chair for that unexpected, extra guest who turns up for dinner!). My most recent addition to the collection, the Turleigh Bookends also now sit on that bookcase holding up my geeky books about furniture and at the foot of my new bookcase sits one of my Farleigh magazine holders housing the papers, magazines and the odd ancient Beano usually strewn around the house – form and function harmoniously combined.

Come to think of it, there are a couple of more book-orientated items around the house that I have made – maybe it is an obsession after all. Either way, it’s one I plan to continue…

 

View my range of literature-inspired furniture or to talk about a commission please get in touch.

 

Built-in cupboards and bookcases

Oak & Glass Display Cabinet

 

 

 

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