by Southern Living Magazine
Maureen and C.A. Miller's Lake Charles, Louisiana home, two walls of bookcases
literally make the foyer the family library.
When I designed the foyer, the concept was to create a multipurpose space," notes Maureen, and ASID Interior Designer, and President of Miller Manor Homes. "Many houses today just aren't large enough to have separate libraries. Bookcases add architectural interest to any room, but because books are so important to me, this is an ideal welcome to our home.
"The genesis was our extensive collection of oversize art and design books," she recalls. "The 15-inch-deep bookshelves determined the thickness of the foyer wall and allowed us to have raised-panel cased entrances to the living and dining rooms as well as deep cabinets without wasting space."
Maureen used 3/4-inch birch plywood to make shelves that would hold the heavy books without buckling. For added support she faced the shelves with ogee-edged, 1 x 2 molding strips.
To help prevent the shelves from sagging, Maureen made the adjustable shelves no longer than 36 inches. "Although the shelves over the cased openings are 52 inches long, they are built as cabinet bottoms with extra supports," the designer adds. "And I place lighter, smaller books on those spans."
Maureen designed 32-inch-tall cabinets below the shelves for concealed storage. "We used touch latches instead of exposed knobs, and we added molding strips so the cabinets appear to be custom paneling," she explains.