I own quite a few books. Not many hundreds but perhaps a single hundred or so. This may not be many compared with others out there but since moving in with my boyfriend their numbers have presented a real storage issue.

We live in an almost 200 year old terrace cottage that used to be part of an old farm; what is now our kitchen used to be the milking shed. To that end the house is small, there are only 3 rooms with the potential for putting up shelves and 2 of those, the bedrooms, have no spare wall space to accommodate fixed or freestanding shelves.

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There is no built in storage in the house either; it just wasn’t designed for modern living.

So to that end, fed up with falling over piles of books placed by the bed or underneath windows, my boyfriend embarked on the most difficult DIY project he’s ever done. He built me a set of shelves in the alcoves either side of the chimney breast!shelves-collage-2

This was no small feat considering the 200 year old walls are uneven, the chimney breast a higgledy piggledy arrangement of bricks and the floor ever so slightly slanted.

But he did such a great job that is in such great keeping with the age of the cottage that I wanted to share photos of how the job progressed from beginning to end with all of you!

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Shelves