Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Bookstore Design

As a follower of NPR Books on Facebook, I see a lot of articles about new books, neat poems, and all sorts of focused articles. But today they posted a link to The 20 Most Beautiful Books in the World, a fantastic display of over-the-top crazy-awesome bookstores like you've never seen before. And if you have seen them before, consider me jealous.  Check it out, because some of these bookstores are simply works of art.

From the article:
With Amazon slowly taking over the publishing world and bookstores closing left and right, things can sometimes seem a little grim for the brick and mortar booksellers of the world. After all, why would anyone leave the comfort of their couch to buy a book when with just a click of a button, they could have it delivered to their door? Well, here’s why: bookstores so beautiful they’re worth getting out of the house (or the country) to visit whether you need a new hardcover or not. We can’t overestimate the importance of bookstores — they’re community centers, places to browse and discover, and monuments to literature all at once — so we’ve put together a list of the most beautiful bookstores in the world, from Belgium to Japan to Slovakia.
 They make a fantastic point: bookstores are gathering places for the community.  Many have couches, nice lounge chairs, some even have coffee shops in them.  I think one of the biggest mistake that Friar Tuck, the bookstore where I used to work, ever made was not creating a reading area.  Sure, there were a couple of small tables and a fancy chair (that honestly wasn't very comfortable), but the tables and chairs were metal and did not facilitate any sort of community.  Also, they were at the front of the store, which got very cold in the winter because of the door opening and closing.  They were right up next to the little coffee dispensers, and were too close together for people to easily browse the magazines while others were sitting at the tables reading newspapers.

It's been a big dream for me for a long time to own a bookstore someday.  I've imagined how it would look: some crazy-shaped bookcases, built-in bookcases in the walls along with the rolling ladders (like they had in some of the Borders bookstores before they closed, but with more of an historical look to them), great areas for displays of niche books, and definitely a great space for reading.  Or even a few spaces placed throughout.  I want it to look cozy, a little old, but still very welcoming and current.  I want to carry books that the masses would like, as well as the books that collectors crave.  See?  I have a vision.

But my vision doesn't quite compare to some of the bookstores around the world.  That's okay though, because as long as there are readers, there will be bookstores selling books.  And if I can be a part of that, it will make me so happy.

4 comments:

  1. I like the blog makeover, Megan!

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  2. Thank you! My "little sister" did it, she's a very talented graphic designer :)

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  3. Sometimes I think the most essential element of a great bookstore is a cat sitting somewhere in the stacks... :)

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    1. I absolutely agree! Cats make bookstores feel like home :)

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