Friday, April 10, 2009

Furniture Focus: Barrister Bookcases

Hale 300 series barrister bookcases

I first learned about barrister bookcases from The New York First Company, which sells the 300 Series from Hale. Why is it called a barrister bookcase? Wikipedia has a nice explanation.
A barrister requires the use of many law books and may frequently move to new chambers. A specialised form of portable bookcase has thus developed to meet their needs. A barrister's bookcase consists of several separate shelf units that may be stacked together to form a cabinet. An additional plinth and hood complete the piece. When moving chambers, each shelf is carried separately without needing to remove its contents and becomes a carrying-case full of books.
But you may not care whether your barrister bookcase can actually be carried with the books in place; you may just like the look, and the glass protecting the contents.

Hale 300 series barrister bookcase

Hale makes two lines of barrister bookcases for the home. Here's a close-up of that 300 series, with what Hale calls the "Quaint English" design.

Hale 800 series barrister bookcase

And here's the 800 series - a more contemporary look.

Ethan Allen barrister bookcase

Ethan Allen has a nice-looking option - but it appears to be a one-piece version, not a true barrister bookcase.

steel lawyers bookcase

For a totally different look, you could get a steel version. This lawyers bookcase comes from Sonrisa. [via Apartment Therapy]

And, of course, barrister bookcases don't have to be used only for books.

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