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Refreshing home outside of Paris makes ingenious use of bookshelves

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More than just for books

We’ve seen our share of enviable built-in bookshelf situations, but this home outside of Paris has turned us absolutely green-eyed with its ingenious, multi-purpose use of book storage.

Designed by Italian architect Andrea Mosca, the aptly titled three-story Bookshelf House was built for a family of five and features beechwood bookshelves that do more than display books: They also double as a stair bannister, room partitions, and all-around delightful design elements.

On the first floor, the large, main bookshelf comprises a series of columns whose tops are stepped, echoing the staircase against which it is placed. In fact, it acts as the bannister, its design extending to additional storage units on the mezzanine floor above. Directly in front of it is a mirror that reflects the units, making the room appear larger. Next to that is a series of offset open-backed shelves that separate the living room from the dining area. The white, minimalist interior further highlights the refreshing transformation of bookshelf to architectural structure.