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Organize Your Workspace with the Perfect Home Office Bookcase

Where’s that binder full of materials for your next big project? Did you leave it on the couch in the living room, or is it buried underneath a stack of papers? It’s not always easy to maintain a neat workspace, and it can be even harder when you’re working from home. We understand. That’s why we’ve put together this helpful guide for choosing the ideal home office bookcase to meet your unique needs.

It’s important to remember that there are a variety of home office bookcases available. Some shelves will suit your purposes better than others, whether you need storage for a collection of paperback and hardcover books, binders, training manuals or even home office supplies and equipment. Consider the space you have available, what the bookshelf will be used for, and the overall look of the room.

One of the perks of working from home is having the freedom to create a space that’s designed for you. Before you buy, take a moment to think about what features you need from your home office bookcase. Below are a few key points to help you make an informed decision:

Safety First


We’ve all heard about the importance of workplace safety, but it’s not something everyone thinks about regarding their home office. In fact, safety is even more of a priority when working from home. You’re not just responsible for your own wellbeing, but also for children, pets, and anyone else who shares the residence.

The statistics for tip over accidents in the home are staggering – in the United States alone, someone is injured every 17 minutes by a furniture, television or appliance tip over. The majority of those are children between 1 and 3.5 years old, who account for around 67% of tip over related fatalities since the year 2000.

Furniture manufacturers are not required by law to meet any guidelines for tip stability, but many will do so voluntarily. Any home office bookcase that has been tested for safety will likely make note of the fact in its product features and description. Two common sets of industry test standards to look for are ANSI/SOHO for residential furniture and ANSI/BIFMA for commercial-grade furniture.

Whether you’re a parent or not, a good rule of thumb is that any piece of furniture 30 inches high or taller should be anchored to a wall. If there are kids in the home, keep items that catch their interest out of sight or on lower shelves.

Tall or Short, Tiers or Cubes

Madison Avenue Bookcase, Desk with Hutch, Lateral File 

Are you someone with a robust personal library? Maybe you’re limited by space and only looking to organize a small collection of books or reference materials. Home office bookcases come in a seemingly endless array of shapes and sizes to cover virtually any need. Of course, you’ll want to measure the area where you plan on using the bookshelf to see how much space is available.

A standard 5 Shelf Bookcase usually measures anywhere from five to six feet high and around 30 inches wide. These bookshelves offer vast amounts of storage and display capacity without taking up too much floor space thanks to their vertical design. The typical 2 Shelf Bookcase will be roughly the same width and depth, but at less than half the height. Some low bookcases even match the height of coordinating home office desks to create an extended work surface when placed side by side.

If a basic tiered shelf isn’t your style, you may consider a Cube Bookcase (sometimes called a Cube Organizer). As the name suggests, these shelves feature evenly spaced cubbies that are great for showcasing books and decorations. The most common configuration includes six separate areas for storage and display, but larger models have as many as 16 and can also serve as a room divider to give your workspace a little more privacy.

Decide on Features

Ironworks Restoreg Gray: L Desk, Bookcase, Lateral File and Chair

The materials you want to store will determine what features your home office bookcase needs. If you have a lot of large decorations or bulky binders and photo albums, you’ll want to make sure the shelves can support them all. Many bookcases have adjustable shelves that can accommodate items of various sizes while others are fixed for maximum stability. Just make sure to check the weight capacity of the shelves if you plan on storing heavier materials.

A Bookcase with Doors is ideal for the items you want kept in order but out of sight. Most of these models feature cabinet doors that conceal the two bottom shelves while the top three remain open. Other options available include asymmetrical bookcase designs with small doors on select compartments and closed storage cabinets with internal shelving.

Etagere Bookcases are designed with open sides, making them perfect for display purposes while providing ample room for books and materials. Etageres usually reflect a rustic or industrial style with open metal framework and sometimes include doors for a combination of open and closed storage.

Not Just for Organizing

Refinery Bookcase 

Don’t forget to put the home in home office. Your workspace should reflect your personality and style as much as it should the job you’re being paid to do. Bookshelves are a great way to display decorations that add a unique charm to any room. It could be a picture of your family, a piece of artwork, or your favorite souvenir from a trip overseas.

These days, you can find a quality home office bookcase to match just about any decor style. The five types of furniture below represent some of the most popular choices:
• Farmhouse features more traditional designs and often has a slightly distressed finish to give it a weathered appearance.
• Industrial design has a distinct “reclaimed” look that’s often achieved by combining materials like metal and wood.
• Contemporary styling is defined by its clean lines, sleek silhouettes, and simple yet functional designs.
• Mid-century modern has timeless appeal with its geometric shapes, bold patterns, and occasionally bright colors.
• Transitional furnishings draw influence from traditional and contemporary design to work well in virtually any space.

Some styles complement each other better than others, so think about your existing furniture when choosing a home office bookcase.