Creating a Dining Room Library Combination with Bookcases

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If you’re lucky enough to have a formal dining room in your house, you already know what a lovely area it can be for hosting visitors and spending time with family. However, many people may not use their formal dining room as often as they’d like, especially if they tend to entertain guests in a more casual setting. But what if you could make this underused area a valuable and welcoming space that the whole family could use and enjoy? That’s where the idea of a dining room library combo comes in. Combining your dining room with a home library allows you to create a multi-functional space that serves as a place to dine, relax, work, and read. Today, we’ll explore how to create a dining room and library combined, focusing on adding bookcases to make a beautiful library dining room.

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

dining table with upholstered dining chairs, art on the wall, bookcase to the right. perfect for a dining room library combination
Shop the dining room: Art, Chairs, Rug, Chandelier, Curtains (similar), Dried Hydrangeas (similar), Dining Table is antique, and decorative items are mostly thrifted.

Shop dining room ideas:

A great way to make your dining room more functional is to transform it into a library and dining room combined. In addition to being a second study, it makes an excellent place for board games, puzzles, and even a cozy reading nook. With bookcases, comfortable seating, and playful decor, you can transform your underutilized dining room into a multi-functional space for the whole family.

dining table with chandelier, bookcase to the right, and art behind the table making a perfect dining room library combo

Here are some tips to help you get started:

Add Bookcases to your Dining Room

The focal point of any library is a bookcase, so start by including a few in your dining room. Make sure that the bookshelves you select, whether built-in or freestanding, fit the design of the dining room furniture. While shorter bookshelves might be effective in a smaller room, floor-to-ceiling bookcases can make a big statement in a larger room.

STYLE TIP: Add books, games, puzzles, and entertaining items to your bookcase. This can include glasses to turn it into a mini bar area as well!

Incorporate a Dining Table

Even though it might seem simple, your dining room library combo must include a dining table. Choose a table that suits the area comfortably; consider getting a round table if the room is small. Remember to have seating for your visitors, such as chairs or a bench.

bookcase filled with books, vases, entertaining items

Comfortable Seating

A library dining area must have comfortable seating. If you have the space, consider including a comfortable chair or chaise couch where you can relax while reading. Add a sofa or a few chairs around a coffee table if you want a cozy place to play board games or solve puzzles. If you don’t have the space, consider adding upholstered dining chairs.

Incorporate Playful Decor and Colour

A library dining room can be a mix of wood and neutrals like mine. Alternatively, inject colour into the space with your book covers, wall art, or even the chairs around the table. A bold rug can also add some character to the room. I plan to add wallpaper to my dining room walls – once I find the perfect one! This will elevate the space but add a cozy factor as well.

Want to learn more about the paint colours in my home? Find more here.

art on the wall by a table

Lighting is Key

Every room needs lighting, and a dining room and library combination is no different. Consider adding dimmer switches or a statement chandelier over the table for dinner parties. Also, consider installing reading lamps or library sconces in the dining room to draw attention to your bookcases.

My favourite place to indulge in a bit of designer lighting is in the dining room! This is a space that guests will see when they visit, and you can enjoy day-to-day too! Unlike a kitchen or living room, dining rooms have limited visual interest, so this is the perfect place to pick quality statement lighting since it will be the star of the space.

Shop Library Dining Room Lighting

Mix and Match Furniture

Mix and match your furniture to create a warm and eclectic atmosphere. Add one or two armchairs near your bookcase or an antique table to the dining room space. Add depth to the area by combining various textures and aesthetics.

combining a dining room with bookcases to create a library.

By transforming your underutilized formal dining room into a library dining room combo with bookcases, you can create a multi-functional space for your whole family. A library dining room is an excellent way to maximize the space in your home, whether you want to use it as a cozy reading nook, a fantastic area for puzzles and board games, or an additional study. So why not give it a shot and see what you can do to make your dining area a place you’ll enjoy spending time in?

Bookcase with books, vases  and decor


Can I put a bookcase in my dining room?

Yes, you can absolutely put a bookcase in your dining room! In fact, incorporating a bookcase into your dining room design is a great way to add functionality and style to the space.

Are built-in bookcases still in style?

Built-in bookcases are still in style (and likely won’t go out of style), especially in homes with a traditional or classic design aesthetic. They are a great way to add storage and character to a room while being practical.

How do I make my dining room stand out?

To make your dining room stand out, consider adding a statement piece of furniture like a unique chandelier, a bold area rug, or an eye-catching piece of artwork. You can also play with colour, pattern, and texture to create a unique and inviting space.

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