Barrister bookcase

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Project by YouthfullMind posted 06-10-2021 09:51 PM 658 views 0 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My mom has been wanting a barrister bookcase for several years, but was always hesitant to buy one because of the price. I built this one to give to her as a Christmas gift last year. The style of the bookcase matches her broyhill attic heirloom furniture. When her and my dad got married, they had a dining room set with a china cabinet. She gave the set to us a few years back and my wife refinished most of the pieces. The top of the china cabinet didn’t fit into our room and has been sitting in our storage since. I was able to repurpose the glass from my mom’s original china cabinet for the doors of the bookcase she has always wanted. I think the patterned glass was perfect for a bookcase.

Carcase: White oak joinery: loose tenons with the Morley mortiser Glass: repurposed from an old china cabinet doors: rail and stile white oak door slides: shop made (careful measuring, but very simple to make; pin on the side of each door with a router cut dado on the side of the carcase) Finish: General finishes arm r seal

11 comments so far

View sras's profile


6175 posts in 4249 days

#1 posted 06-10-2021 11:55 PM

Nice! Reusing the glass makes this a special project.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View DevinT's profile


1181 posts in 87 days

#2 posted 06-11-2021 12:02 AM

What a thoughtful gift!

-- Devin, SF, CA

View swirt's profile


6277 posts in 4092 days

#3 posted 06-11-2021 02:38 AM

Fantastic work. I like the look and he glass just makes so much more personal.

-- Galootish log blog,

View Madmark2's profile


2844 posts in 1708 days

#4 posted 06-11-2021 03:13 AM

Very nice!

-- The hump with the stump and the pump!

View BB1's profile


2214 posts in 1968 days

#5 posted 06-11-2021 03:33 AM

Great gift. I agree that the glass looks perfect for the project.

View Calmudgeon's profile


505 posts in 2548 days

#6 posted 06-11-2021 03:39 AM

Love the repurposed glass. I’ve been contemplating building some stacking barrister cases for some time.

-- "As are the things we make, so are we ourselves." - Lin Yutang

View BurlyBob's profile


9009 posts in 3386 days

#7 posted 06-11-2021 05:02 AM

Absolutely fantastic. The glass really make it unique!

View robgul's profile


27 posts in 153 days

#8 posted 06-11-2021 06:26 AM

Brilliant – the major manufacturer of this style of bookcase is Globe Wernicke – Googling “globe wernicke bookcase” brings up some stunning pictures ( and tasty prices)

I’ve always wanted some but not wanted to spend the money – and they’re probably beyond my woodworking ability.

-- Rob at Stratford-upon-Avon, England

View Peteybadboy's profile


3504 posts in 3070 days

#9 posted 06-11-2021 11:00 AM

Nice job and great gift!

-- Petey

View woodbutcherbynight's profile (online now)


9614 posts in 3529 days

#10 posted 06-11-2021 09:14 PM

Beautiful work

-- Live to tell the stories, they sound better that way.

View recycle1943's profile


5487 posts in 2742 days

#11 posted 06-11-2021 09:32 PM

we have an original Barriaster Book Case ( 4 tier ) but it’s not nearly as attractive as your build. Really like the door glass

-- Dick, Malvern Ohio - my biggest fear is that when I die, my wife sells my toys for what I told her I paid for them

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