book case seat

 Book case seat quote.

After much prevarication on my part, and discussion with Sheila we decided on a quote to be displayed on the back wall of the spiral book case seat.

I had seen a quote on a wall when I went to Twickenham to watch the rugby. The original was attributed to Stephen Fry: ' Books are no more threatened by Kindle than stairs by elevators.' Sheila did not approve the use of the word 'elevators', she considered it to be far too American and most unlike Mr. Fry.

After much searching I found a quotation in Latin attributed to Thomas Kempis, who among other things was bishop of Cologne, He was born in approx. 1380 and died in 1471, the first written record of his life was when he went to school in 1392 at about 12 years old.

Not wanting to bore anyone with the Latin,  roughly translated the quote reads' Never have I found peace, except in a corner with a book.'

I hand painted the quote on to MDF, then had it framed in Ash by one of our neighbours. Unfortunately it is very difficult to get a decent picture due to the glass balustrade in front of the book case







 Construction of book case

I developed the book case seat from a design I had seen some time ago. The original was virtually free standing and both edges were curved.

For our space, which is a small mezzanine formed by boxing over the stair well, the cabinet had to follow the line of the internal gable on the outside, but have a curved form on the inside.

I have experimented with steam bending skirting boards for the cottage, but the thought of bending timber then dowel or biscuit jointing bent boards did not appeal.

A search of the internet led to the discovery of bendy ply., standard 2.4x1.2 metre sheets 12mm thick designed for use around columns to cloak girders etc. and used to make curved forms in commercial properties.

I ordered 2 sheets from SV timber in Alfreton, then had to work out how to form the curved inner edge of the book case.

 I constructed the seat in several box sections following the shape of the gable, then fixed 2 layers of bendy ply to the inner edges of the boxes to give the curved form. It is quite a difficult material to cut, I found the raw edges tended to feather when using a saw, so I then marked them with a knife on the top surface to reduce the feathering.

Once the basic shape was finished, the whole construction was sanded, filled and painted and the lighting installed.

All the front edges were covered with hardwood. The top and bottom rails were covered in Oak and the divisions between the books were covered in different hardwoods. Acacia, Ash, Beech, Bubinga, Cherry, Chestnut, Elm, Iroko, Maple, Sapele, Walnut and Zebrano.

My idea is that I can use the hardwoods as a colour palette to give my customers an idea of the range of hardwoods available for inclusion in their commissions.