Hidden Bookcase Door

by Diana @ The Devine Home on Monday, January 14, 2013 · 1 comment

Nancy Drew Hidden Staircase 233x300 Hidden Bookcase DoorI discovered my love of reading when I was just a girl. From The Velvet Room by Zipha Snyder to the Nancy Drew series, I was always escaping into a book.

One aspect that enchanted me about many of the books I read was the element of “hidden” rooms. The chance to perhaps discover something wonderful and magical like Robin did in the Velvet Room just captured my imagination.

I’ve always thought if I ever had a chance to build my own house I would put a hidden passage or room into the design. Wouldn’t that be so fun?!

Sadly, that is not a realistic option when you are remodeling an existing home like we are. You pretty much have to work within the space you have to keep costs reasonable.

This past fall we remodeled my husband’s second-floor office.Bens office before door 300x225 Hidden Bookcase Door In the photo below you see the “before-before” photo. This is what the space looked like when we first bought the house before we did anything. {I have drawn a door where we put one when we created his new closet last year.}

You see the little wood “door” to the right? That was the crawl space entrance into a HUGE unused attic space behind these walls.

It made NO sense to us why the previous owners who had designed and built the house left this space without easy access. {We put a full-size door in the hallway outside my husband’s office so now we can walk right in! It’s perfect for Christmas storage!}

bens office before 3 300x225 Hidden Bookcase Door

The house was built in the early 90s and his office had your typical double bi-fold closet doors, seen in this photo.

There was a very small bathroom on the other side of that closet. Last year we combined the two spaces, so now my husband has a nice large bathroom that connects to his office.

Bens office before door 300x225 Hidden Bookcase Door

Once we got rid of the old closet, we created a new one by tapping the unused attic space behind the door that I have drawn into this photo. {The attic space runs in an L-shaped area behind both of these walls.}

So, back to our remodel.  I was talking to my carpenter about the wainscoting my hubby wanted on the walls and we got to talking about a few other things that eventually led us to a discussion about creating a hidden door bookcase for the office.

Bens office bookshelf closed 300x300 Hidden Bookcase DoorMy husband has a lot of books and we didn’t have any wall space in his office to put a bookcase with all the other pieces of furniture and pictures he already had in the space. By replacing the existing closet door with a bookcase – BINGO – our problem was solved!

My carpenter LOVED the idea {he had always wanted to do one of these} and so did my husband.  I know it’s not exactly a hidden passage but it is a hidden room – even if it’s just a closet!

Here’s the bookcase in his office. My husband loves the traditional colonial look, so we did a beautiful custom wainscoting along the lower part of the wall and painted it a vibrant green. Wallpaper went above.Bens office bookshelf 300x300 Hidden Bookcase Door

My husband has mostly stained oak or maple furniture so painting the wainscoting made a nice contrast and has a Colonial Williamsburg look that he wanted.

We love how functional this option was for his office. Storage for books, display for knick knacks and a hidden room!

Give careful consideration to the location of a hidden bookcase door.Choose a location that does not receive heavy use because stuff may go falling off the shelves if you’re not careful.

Bens closet open 300x300 Hidden Bookcase DoorMy hubby’s closet door is a good choice for hidden bookcase door. He takes care going in and out.  I would not put one of these in a kid’s area.

Open Sesame ~ Voila! Our “hidden” room.So much fun!!



pixel Hidden Bookcase Door

{ 1 comment }

1 HollyM Wednesday, January 16, 2013 at 7:57 pm

I loved The Velvet Room, and still have my copy. And Nancy Drew, of course! The hidden door/bookcase is very charming.

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