There are two things always present in our 200-year old home: Books and Dust. We can’t do much about the dust (a tiled roof, thin window panes, busy road outside and hardwood floors make it a mammoth task to clean), except to, well, dust occasionally. The books, though, are another story altogether. This home currently hosts four generations-worth of books. We have hundreds of books tucked away in cupboards, trunks and stacked on top of cabinets. Seven cupboards filled with antique and vintage books in Portuguese, German, French and English line the kitchen corridor. Three cupboards in the entrance host fiction, books on Goa and music. Other cupboards hold medical textbooks going back to the late 1800s until the 1990s. And all of this is just what my in-laws have. My own modest collection is still lying at my mother’s house (sorry, mum) and I dare not bring it here yet because we’ve run out of shelf space.
Despite the daunting dust situation, I’ve taken to displaying a few books here and there. The trio above is in our formal living room. Three different styles of art, completely at home. In the dining room, a quartet of hard-bound books on ballet sit on an antique laundry basket, now re-caned and re-purposed as a cabinet of sorts. The books are accompanied by a brass leaf and a wooden elephant rattle.