Bookshelf Chair: Easy 1-Day Build

Bookshelf Chair – The Perfect Chair for a Bibliophile

Bibliophile… a lover of books! If that describes you, this has to be the perfect bookshelf chair (well, almost, since there’s nowhere to sit your coffee cup)! Indulge yourself by reading for an entire day, sitting on a pile of books! Well, sort of. All you need is a slave (or willing family member) to bring you food and drink as demanded 🙂

A DIY-er built this particular bookshelf chair or biblio-chaise for his wife. We think she’s a happy girl after getting this gift!

Though it looks big and wide in the photos, this furniture item fits through a standard door opening. It’s about the same size as a regular single-seat sofa. But since this chair is also a bookshelf, it’s got to be a real winner as great space-saving furniture. Perfect for those running out of shelf space!

DIY Bookshelf Chair

Click on any image to start the lightbox display. Use your Esc key to close the lightbox. You can also view the images as a slideshow if you prefer 😎

What we love even more about this DIY project is that it’s easy to build. Read more below to see how DIY-er Darko made his bookshelf chair!

Seat sizing:

We’ve had numerous requests for plans for this chair, but it is very dependent on personal taste and timber size availability. This can be adjusted to body size, but in this instance, the seating area’s dimensions are Length 28″ 3/8 x Width 25″ 7/8 x Deep 15″ 5/8.

Building Your Bookshelf Chair


  • 2 pcs 4×8′ sheets of 3/4″ Plywood
  • 6 pcs 8′ of 2×1″ Pine Strips
  • 4 pcs 8′ of 2×2″ Pine
  • 2 boxes 1-1/4″ Kreg Pocket Screws
  • Wood Glue


  • Measuring Tape
  • Measuring Triangle
  • Hammer
  • Marker
  • Wood Clamps (of various lengths)
  • Miter Saw
  • Cordless Drill
  • Compressor and Nail Gun
  • Kreg Jig


Bookshelf Chair

I started by creating a base cut out of a 4×8 sheet of plywood and built sides using a 2 x 2-inch pine. The sides are 29″ tall.

In between 2 x 2s, I used 2 x 1-inch pieces of pine.

To secure 2 x 2 and 2 x 1 pieces to the plywood platform, I used Gorilla glue and Kreg pocket screws.

Bookshelf ChairThen I used more 2 x 1-inch pine to create support for a first-story piece of plywood and secured it with pocket screws and wood glue.

Bookshelf Chair
Bookshelf Chair

Closeups of completed first-level sides.

Bookshelf Chair

I did not take any pictures of adding a horizontal seating area piece, but it is the same size square piece of plywood as the base piece, and it was glued down only.

Bookshelf Chair

Bookshelf ChairNext, I started with upper bookshelf slots with 2 x 2 in pines. To secure them, I used the same method of Kreg pocket screws and wood glue. The seating area is 28.5″ long and 26″ wide.

Bookshelf Chair

Closeup of bookshelf slats and how pocket screws were used to interlock each piece of 2×2 pine to each other.

Bookshelf Chair
Bookshelf Chair
Bookshelf Chair

Top and side view of completed sides.

Bookshelf Chair

View of the back as it was built using 2×2.

Bookshelf Chair
Bookshelf Chair
Bookshelf Chair
Bookshelf Chair

Next, I cut out the plywood to fill in the support for the top three sides of the bookshelf chair. As you see, I used clamps to secure it better to the seating area while wood glue dried.

Bookshelf Chair
Bookshelf Chair
Bookshelf Chair

Finally, we have pics of the completed unpainted bookshelf chair.

Bookshelf Chair

I had my wife choose the wild color of her choice for the color.

Bookshelf Chair

Finally, the cushions were custom-made by my mother-in-law to tie it all up. Bring on the books and the reading enjoyment!

Thanks to Dkavazovic for this great project!

Design Variations of Bookshelf Chairs

Bookshelf chairs are a dream come true for book lovers everywhere. They combine comfort with functionality, offering a cozy spot to read while keeping your favorite books within arm’s reach. These unique pieces of furniture come in various designs to match any room’s decor. Let’s explore some design variations of bookshelf chairs that can add style and utility to your space.

Classic Wooden Bookshelf Chair

This timeless design features a sturdy wooden structure that incorporates shelves around its base and sides. It’s perfect for traditional or rustic-themed rooms. The natural wood grain adds warmth and character, making each chair a one-of-a-kind piece.

Modern Minimalist Bookshelf Chair

A modern minimalist bookshelf chair is ideal for those who love clean lines and sleek designs. These chairs often have geometric shapes and are made from metal or polished wood. They fit seamlessly into contemporary spaces, offering a stylish spot to store books and magazines.

Corner Bookshelf Chair

Maximizing space is crucial in small apartments or rooms. A corner bookshelf chair is designed to fit snugly into corners, turning an often underused area into a cozy reading nook. This design usually features wrap-around shelving, providing ample storage for books.

Children’s Bookshelf Chair

Encourage young readers with a bookshelf chair designed just for them. These chairs are smaller and come in bright colors and fun shapes. Some designs include themes from children’s literature, making them an exciting addition to any child’s bedroom or playroom.

Luxury Leather Bookshelf Chair

For a touch of elegance, opt for a luxury leather bookshelf chair. These chairs combine the rich leather texture with built-in shelves for a sophisticated look. They’re perfect for creating a distinguished reading area in home offices or living rooms.

Convertible Bookshelf Chair

Innovative and versatile convertible bookshelf chairs can transform from a chair into a step ladder or even a small table. This design is great for spaces requiring flexible furniture solutions, offering a place to sit and additional functionality when needed.

Each design variation caters to different tastes and needs, making the bookshelf chair versatile. Whether you’re looking for a statement piece for your living room or a functional addition to a small space, a bookshelf chair design is perfect for you.

Bookshelf Chair as a Learning Tool for Kids

Bookshelf chairs are not just stylish furniture pieces but also fantastic learning tools for kids. By merging the love for reading with a functional seating solution, bookshelf chairs can transform reading from a chore into a delightful adventure. Let’s explore how these innovative chairs can support children’s educational journeys and foster a lifelong love for books.

Encouraging Reading Habits

Having a bookshelf chair in a child’s space does wonders for making reading an attractive activity. When books are displayed within arm’s reach, children are more inclined to grab one and start reading. This easy access removes barriers to reading, turning it into a spontaneous and enjoyable activity. 

Over time, this encourages children to integrate reading into their daily lives, helping them develop a habit that enhances their literacy and imagination. By making books a constant and inviting presence, children learn to see reading not as a task but as a pleasurable part of their everyday routine. This shift in perception can have lasting benefits on their educational journey and personal growth.

Creating a Personalized Reading Nook

A unique, cozy corner dedicated to reading can be magical for a child. With a bookshelf chair as its main feature, this nook becomes a haven for young readers. It allows them to surround themselves with their favorite stories, creating a personal retreat tailored to their interests. This unique space encourages children to read more, offering them a sense of ownership and privacy. 

As they fill their nook with books they love, they’re likelier to engage with reading, seeing it as an enjoyable and fulfilling pastime. Moreover, this personalized area supports their emotional and intellectual development, providing a quiet spot for reflection, learning, and escaping into the worlds within their books.

Organizational Skills

Introducing a bookshelf chair into a child’s environment is a practical lesson in organization. It provides a specific place for books, encouraging children to return them after reading. This habit of keeping their reading area neat and organized extends beyond just books. It lays the foundation for developing a broader responsibility for their personal space and belongings. 

Over time, children learn the value of order and tidiness, essential for academic success and everyday life. By starting these lessons early, children are equipped with organizational habits that will benefit them in numerous ways, from managing their schoolwork to maintaining their living spaces as they grow.

Interactive Learning

A bookshelf chair is more than a storage solution; it’s a gateway to interactive learning. Giving children the autonomy to select their own books engages them in an active learning process. This freedom encourages them to explore a variety of subjects, literary genres, and cultural narratives, broadening their understanding of the world. 

Choosing what to read empowers children, boosting their confidence and nurturing their curiosity. They develop critical thinking and decision-making skills as they navigate their options. This interactive approach to learning makes reading more appealing and supports a more holistic educational experience, encouraging children to become proactive learners.

Combining Comfort with Education

The role of comfort in the learning process cannot be overstated. A bookshelf chair is designed to offer just that, ensuring that children can sit comfortably for extended periods as they explore the pages of their favorite books. This comfort is critical to maintaining their focus and interest in reading, transforming it from a potential chore to a pleasurable activity. 

A well-designed reading environment supports better posture, reduces distractions, and enhances the ability to concentrate on reading material. When children feel comfortable, they’re more likely to immerse themselves in stories and educational content, leading to improved comprehension and retention of information. 

Ultimately, by combining comfort with education, a bookshelf chair helps create a more effective and enjoyable learning experience, encouraging children to spend more time reading and learning.

A Tool for All Learning Styles

Bookshelf chairs offer a unique advantage by accommodating different learning styles, making them a versatile tool in a child’s educational toolkit. For visual learners, the visual display of books invites curiosity and stimulates interest, enabling them to connect with the material visually. 

Kinesthetic learners, who benefit from movement and touch, can interact physically with books and chairs, enhancing their learning experience. This adaptability ensures that children find a supportive tool in the bookshelf chair regardless of their preferred learning style. It provides a tactile, engaging environment for kinesthetic learners while offering visual learners a stimulating optical array of reading options. 

This inclusivity makes the bookshelf chair essential in creating a nurturing and effective learning environment that respects and supports the diverse ways children explore and understand the world.

The Ergonomics of Bookshelf Chairs

The furniture design plays a pivotal role in how comfortably and efficiently we can perform tasks, especially regarding reading and learning. With their innovative combination of storage and seating, bookshelf chairs are a brilliant example of ergonomic design tailored to the needs of avid readers, including children. 

The ergonomics of bookshelf chairs are not just about comfort; they’re about creating an optimal environment for reading and learning. Let’s delve into how these chairs are designed with ergonomics in mind.

Optimal Seating for Reading

A key feature of bookshelf chairs is their focus on providing a comfortable seating position that supports prolonged reading periods. These chairs are often designed with a slight recline and adequate back support, which helps reduce strain on the back and neck. 

The seat height and the backrest angle are calculated to encourage good posture, minimizing discomfort during long reading sessions. This thoughtful design ensures that readers can stay engaged with their books without being distracted by discomfort.

Accessibility and Ease of Use

The ergonomic benefits of bookshelf chairs extend beyond just the sitting position. These chairs are designed to keep books within easy reach, preventing the need for awkward stretching or straining to grab a book. This accessibility is crucial for maintaining a comfortable reading environment. 

The shelves are often positioned around the chair’s perimeter, making it easy for readers to select and replace books without leaving their seats. This thoughtful placement supports a seamless reading experience, encouraging readers to explore more titles without physical strain.

Adaptable Design for Various Users

Bookshelf chairs are crafted with a range of users in mind, from children to adults. This adaptability is seen in the various sizes and configurations available, catering to different body types and preferences. 

Some chairs offer adjustable elements, such as movable shelves or cushions, allowing users to customize their reading environment. This flexibility ensures that the chair can provide ergonomic benefits tailored to the individual, making reading enjoyable for everyone.

The ergonomics of bookshelf chairs are central to their appeal. By combining comfortable seating with accessible storage, these chairs create an ideal reading environment that encourages longer reading sessions, supports proper posture, and adapts to the needs of various users. The ergonomic design of bookshelf chairs not only enhances the reading experience but also contributes to the overall well-being of its users.

FAQ on Bookshelf Chairs

What is a bookshelf chair?

A bookshelf chair is a piece of furniture that combines the functionality of a bookshelf with the comfort of a chair. It’s designed to provide a cozy spot for reading while keeping your favorite books conveniently within reach.

Who would benefit from a bookshelf chair?

Anyone who loves reading and has a collection of books will find a bookshelf chair beneficial. It’s especially great for people with limited space who need multifunctional furniture that saves space without sacrificing comfort or style.

Can bookshelf chairs fit in small spaces?

Yes, bookshelf chairs are designed with space-saving in mind. Many models fit well in small spaces, offering a comfortable reading nook and ample book storage.

Are bookshelf chairs customizable?

While the level of customization can vary, many DIY bookshelf chair projects allow for personal touches in size, color, and design. Some manufacturers also offer options for customization.

How do bookshelf chairs promote organizational skills in children?

Bookshelf chairs encourage children to organize their books after reading, teaching them to take care of their belongings and tidy their space.

Can a bookshelf chair be used as an educational tool?

Absolutely. Bookshelf chairs can make reading more accessible and enjoyable for children, promoting independent learning and exploring different subjects through books.

What materials are used to make bookshelf chairs?

Common materials include wood, metal, and sometimes plastic for children’s versions. The choice of material often depends on the design, durability, and aesthetic appeal.

How do I maintain and clean my bookshelf chair?

Maintenance usually involves regular dusting and wiping down with a suitable cleaner for the material. Cushions or fabric elements may have specific cleaning instructions based on their material.

Where can I buy a bookshelf chair?

Bookshelf chairs can be purchased from furniture stores or online retailers, or you can make one yourself if you want a DIY project.

Are bookshelf chairs comfortable for long reading sessions?

Yes, many bookshelf chairs are designed with comfort in mind, featuring ergonomic considerations to support long periods of reading without discomfort.


Bookshelf chairs offer a unique and practical solution for book lovers seeking comfort and functionality. They not only enhance the reading experience by providing a cozy spot to enjoy your favorite books but also help to save space, promote organizational skills, and cater to various learning styles. With designs ranging from classic to modern, there’s a bookshelf chair out there to suit any decor and personal preference.

Looking for more comfy seats? Read our garden rocking chair project next!



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