Last week we had a lively discussion on how best to display books in one's library, books by the yard, display of figurines on bookshelves, etc. I think we came to the conclusion (or at least I did) that we agree to disagree.
Despite the fact that many libraries tend to be serious rooms, there's no reason why one can't add a little humor to them. To me, well-loved and well-worn libraries are already full of life, but what's the harm in having a little fun in them too?
The image above is of a library designed by Colefax & Fowler. Some of the bookcases in the room are real, functional bookcases with chicken wire mesh doors. But look closely at the section above- it's actually a trompe l'oeil painted panel that hides a jib door. The painting of the faux books and mementos is covered in chicken wire to make it look like the real bookcases. What clever subterfuge! Here is a blurry detail shot below.
Another clever trick is to be found in the library at Chatsworth. Instead of using trompe l'oeil painting to hide a door, the late Duke of Devonshire chose to inset faux books into a door. These "books" have all types of witty titles: "Consenting Adults" by Able N. Willing; "The Endless Road" by Wanda Farr; and "Venus Observed" by Sawyer.
Or, you can just paper a wall in books like Nina Campbell did using Brunschwig & Fils "Bibliotheque" paper. One of my all-time favorite prints, this paper would look great in a small room or hallway leading to the library or on blank walls in the library.