What Is a Foldable Bookcase?

Cindy Quarters
Cindy Quarters
Woman standing behind a stack of books
Woman standing behind a stack of books

A bookcase is a handy place to store books, CDs, tapes, knick-knacks and all manner of other items. Although extremely useful, a bookcase can be awkward to transport. When purchased, some bookcases require assembly, making them easier to get home from the store but very difficult to take along if the owner needs to move. A foldable bookcase is one that can be folded flat, making it easy to transport and much more manageable than conventional furniture.

Using a foldable bookcase is very convenient for people who must move often, especially for students living in apartments or dormitories while at college. Folding furniture can usually be handled by one person — a bonus for people who move a lot. A foldable bookcase takes only a few moments to take down or to set in place.

A foldable bookcase has three main sections. The first of these is the back, which is most often a simple but sturdy frame. There is a rectangle made of four pieces of wood or other material that corresponds to the overall height and width of the bookcase. The back has sturdy support pieces running across it at each place where the shelves go. A foldable bookcase is almost always open in between the supports, to keep it light.

The sides are made in the same manner as the back. They are as wide as the shelves are deep, and the same height as the back. The shelves are usually 8 to 12 inches wide. The shelves are fastened to the supports on the back by hinges that allow them to be lifted up against the back when the bookcase is folded. The sides are connected to the back piece by hinges that allow them to fold across the front of the shelves, and they have stoppers on them to hold the shelves in place when the unit is in use.

People who sell objects at yard sales, flea markets and other sales sites can benefit from using a foldable bookcase for displaying smaller items. Glassware, candles, books, records and toys are all easiest to display on shelves. Both setting up and taking down a display are much easier, since foldable shelves lend themselves to being transported from place to place and will fit in almost any car.

Foldable shelves are most often made of wood and can be purchased in almost any finish desired, including cherry, mahogany, pine, chestnut and oak. Unfinished shelves are available that can be painted or stained as desired, making them a good choice to fit into any décor. Other materials, such as glass and wrought iron, are also sometimes used to make foldable shelves, adding to the versatility of this handy furniture item.

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    • Woman standing behind a stack of books
      Woman standing behind a stack of books