Contemporary Oak Bookshelves 


(Click any photo for a close-up view)


These sleek contemporary bookcases were constructed so they form an "island" in the center of a large room in the client's townhome.  Serving as a room divider, the shelves face the section of the room allocated for home office use and the back side of the shelves serves as a component platform for a sophisticated home theater.  Related projects for home office cabinetry and home theater cabinetry were built at the same time (see project links at the bottom of this page).  In order to visually tie all the cabinet projects in this room together, a large bundle of custom-made veneered plywood was ordered.  A full flitch of rift-sawn red oak veneer, which has an extremely straight grain pattern, was laid up on the plywood, ensuring a very high degree of grain similarity and color consistency across all projects.  The results achieved through this process are evident in the project photos shown above.

The bookcases are divided into 3 major partitions, with each of those being divided into two minor partitions.  The vertical dividers between each of those sections become progressively narrower, which provides a subtle yet distinctive division of the overall space.  The bookshelves extend up to a height of 8', with the remaining space below the ceiling allocated as a decorative display space with built-in accent lighting.  Half of the shelves in each bookcase section are adjustable and the other half are fixed to provide structural integrity for the entire island.

Another highly unique nature of this bookshelf installation is the amount of concealed wiring which is contained within the cabinetry (the wiring is associated with the home theater equipment on the back-side of the bookcases).  Each of the 4 major vertical partitions, which run from floor to ceiling, are actually hollow-core structures in which wiring can be routed.  The outer two partitions route electrical power while the inner two are reserved for data/signal cabling (separating these wiring types reduces the chances for signal interference).  Removable strips on the back panels of the bookcases allow the wiring in these chases to be accessed when necessary.

Approximate Dimensions

123" wide, 120" tall, and 13" deep.

Related Items

The bookshelves described on this page were part of a large multi-project engagement with the client.  To see the other projects that were constructed in the same design style and using the special-ordered oak plywood, check out the Contemporary Oak Home Office and the Contemporary Oak Home Theater.    For other bookshelf installations, please visit the Bookshelves & Built-Ins page.  To see other contemporary styled projects, please visit the Contemporary page.


Cabinet pricing is dependent on a wide variety of factors that can drastically alter the final cost.  Cabinet quantities/sizes, material selection, construction methods, accessories, and finishes all impact the pricing.  The oak bookshelves shown on this page cost approximately $4,400 for construction and installation labor and $2,500 for the specially manufactured riftsawn red oak veneer plywood used in this project.

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