We had a spare room in our house we used for years as a play room \ storage room. It had cork floorboards, yellow walls, open orange brick fire place and dark stained shelves from the 1960s which were literally falling off the walls. On the up side it had high ceilings, original Edwardian windows with stained glass at the top and presented a blank page for renovation.
We wanted to create a library. With more shelves than we needed so we would never run out of space. I also wanted a ladder.
But, and this was a big but for us - how expensive is joinery? It must be the most cost per metre (apart from gold plating!) of any home refurbishment activity. So for many years the room lay dormant and loved only by messy children (and we of course used it for work, not the nicest environment).
Below are some of the types of libraries which inspired us.
Although we thought about dark wood in the end we went with white and with a very simple charcoal grey carpet and white joinery and walls theme, and had as many shelves installed as would possibly fit, which ultimately gave us three wall's worth. Even the joiner thought it was too much but when we filled it with books he changed his mind!
And once we bit the bullet and had the library done, this is what it looks like (not easy to photograph actually).
There are two more rows of shelves above the shelves in this photo, one below and cupboards beneath.