How do I Choose the Best Bookshelf Table?

B. Miller

A bookshelf table can be a good way to maximize available space in a smaller home or apartment, and can be both attractive and convenient to use. The most popular types of bookshelf tables are designed for family or living rooms, and are typically designed to function as side tables on either side of a couch or chair, or as a coffee table in the middle of the room. A bookshelf table may be used in any room, however, and is popular in kitchens for storing cookbooks, in hallways or entryways for holding mail and magazines, or even in bedrooms. Considering the decor of your home, and the way you want to use the table, are the best ways to choose this type of furniture.

Woman holding a book
Woman holding a book

There are many different designs of bookshelf tables available. Some may look just like a coffee table or end table, but with racks added underneath the tabletop. Others will have a more modern appearance, and may feature different cubes within the table for storing books or magazines. Angled magazine racks are frequently part of a bookshelf table, as well. Materials used to create these tables typically include wood, metal, or even heavy plastic; these may be available in brighter colors for kids' rooms. People with modern or traditional homes will likely be able to find a bookshelf table that will match their decor.

Because a bookshelf table is intended to serve double duty as both a place to store items and as a functional table, they are often designed to be fairly low. When they are placed next to a couch or used as a coffee table, they are more easy to reach than a bookshelf of normal height might be, but they still make great places to place a lamp, display family photos, or even sit and relax at a coffee table. A bookshelf table designed for use in a bedroom or hall might be slightly higher; people often place these by the front door and use them as an area for putting keys and mail when walking in the door. This type of furniture used in the kitchen can be a good place for storing cookbooks along with smaller kitchen appliances.

Both stores and online outlets offer bookshelf tables for sale, and range in price depending on the materials and craftsmanship used to create them. For homes or apartments in which space is at a premium, they can be extremely versatile pieces of furniture. They may also be safer for kids' rooms because they have a lower profile; kids may find it easier to access the items on the shelves, and are less likely to pull this type of bookshelf down on top of themselves, which can be very dangerous. If it is possible that the furniture could fall, however, it is important to bolt it to the wall to prevent accidents.

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