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$10 Book Tower

So, I’m kind of a book fiend. Nothing beats a sunny afternoon on a porch swing with a good book. I love my Nook when it comes to reading “fluff”. You know, the stuff you read maybe once or twice and then have to take to the resale shop. But when it comes to my tried-and-true favorites like Harry Potter that I read and reread until the pages fall out, I need it in hardback. And these pretty hardbacks shouldn’t be hidden, they need something to make them center stage!

It just so happens that this little wall jut-out from my kitchen pantry is the perfect width for hardback books. Plus, it was just sitting there, calling my name to do something with it. I came up with the idea for this floating book tower after seeing this image on Pinterest:

 

Beautiful, right? But get this. It’s “price upon request” which in rich people speak, means “you’re outta your damn mind”! Um, one 2×4 is two bucks at Lowe’s. Even if you get super fancy wood, there’s no way the materials cost anywhere over $10. So you’re asking me to pay you in my lifeblood to chop up a stick of wood and hang it on my wall. No thanks! Besides, it looks a little skinny to me. Why not upgrade to a 2×6? One 8 foot board is just over $3, and you can get two shelves to a board. Here’s how!
Supplies:
• 2 – 2x6x8′ stud-grade pine boards (2 shelves per board, so this makes 4 shelves)
• Drill
• Countersink bit (optional)
• 32 – 2.5″ screws, 9 – 3 or 4″ screws (again, supplies are for 4 shelves.)
• Paint or stain, sandpaper

Step 1: Build your boxes.
I don’t have a photo of this, but I cut my boards to 10″ lengths, and you need 4 per shelf. Make a box by screwing the boards together. I recommend countersinking your screws or at least pre-drilling the holes, because the stud grade pine has a tendency to split. Which was my problem. You can also get fancy and cut the edges on 45 degree angles, like the Pinterest photo above. I tried to do this, but got impatient and my angles were all screwed up. So I had to cut them off at regular old 90 degree angles, but it still looks pretty good! I’d also recommend painting or staining these now. I waited, and it was a pain in the tuckus to paint them and not get any on the wall. I’m just so impatient sometimes!

Step 2: Mount your shelves:

Studs are usually located roughly 16 or 24″ apart. As my shelves are only 10″ wide, that was going to be an issue. I decided to mount them flush to my side wall, since there was a stud there. I used three 3″ screws in the side, drilling straight through my shelf into the wall stud. Those suckers aren’t going anywhere! If you plan to mount them on a center wall, I would suggest pre-drilling holes and “toenailing” them into the studs, or using a Kreg Jig if you have one. You’re going to need to hold up roughly 20 pounds of weight between the books and the shelf itself, so studs are key. If you don’t want to mess around with drilling, you can get L brackets and use those to attach the shelves to the studs, no problem!

Step 3: Load up with books!

I filled ‘er up with all my hardbacks, and it worked out perfectly. If you’re not as big of a book hoarder, these would look great with any other type of decor. Those floating display boxes can cost a fortune at the store, and these are only $2.50 a piece! This entire setup only cost $10.

The 10″ width worked out perfectly, as I was able to alternate stacking my books both horizontally and vertically to make the display more visually appealing.

I painted these with the same glossy black paint as my hutch, and I’m actually surprised at how well the gloss paint hides imperfections. I always thought it showed them more, but I was wrong. This project is so easy to customize with your own dimensions. You can make them in different sizes, and intersperse them on a large wall. Or do something like mine, with them equally sized and space to make a fun book display. It’s awesome that I get to store and show off my books in a cheap, space-saving way!





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13 comments

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  1. Kaye

    I love it!! BTW, I have a book for Charlie…got to start her off right!

  2. Thank you! I can’t wait to see it :) Thanks so much for the stack you already sent, at least my dad told me it was from you. P.S. do you have a Pinterest profile? I need to follow you if you do, and invite you if you don’t!

  3. Suzy

    Those are really great but any bookcase that has Harry Potter and Robin Hobb is obviously gonna ROCK!!

    1. I actually got to meet Robin Hobb once, and it was pretty much the best night of my life. She had a book reading for the Soldier’s Son trilogy at Barnes and Noble, then suggested we all trek across the street to the restaurant to finish our discussion. Not only did she answer ALL our questions (and was an incredible conversationalist) she PAID for dinner! For all of us! I was blown away by her generosity and genuine love for her fans. Plus, we got to ask her if the Fool was a man or a woman, and she said she wrote “him” as both. Sometimes she needed him to be a woman, and others a man. I loved finding that out!

  4. Suzy

    Wow, that’s awesome. I’ve been to several of her book readings but nothing that cool has ever happened. The new book comes out in February!!! Just looking at your favorite books I wonder if you’ve ever read any Patricia Briggs. She may even have surpassed Robin Hobb as my current favorite author. That might just be because Robin’s books are coming out a little less often than they used to though. Well and because I didn’t really love the Soldier Son trilogy as well as the others.

  5. Melissa

    That is absolutely genius. I love it!! Think I’m going to have to find somewhere to incorporate it in to my home. Thanks!

    If you get a chance sometime, you’ll have to stop by my blog.

    By the way I am pinning this project.

    Melissa

    1. Thanks Melissa! I popped by, you’ve got tons of great downloads for preschoolers!

  6. the cape on the corner

    what a super unique idea! love it! now where can i make that work….

  7. Nicole @ Scrap Me Baby

    I have the perfect spot for this! I love books too, altho mine are almost all “fluff” LOL, sometimes you just need the escape!

  8. Angie S

    This looks fantastic and totally doable for anyone! Thanks for sharing this!

  9. Kathy

    Absolutely awesome!!! Now I need to just find a little nook to put it, or should I say several little nooks!

  10. Remodelaholic

    I love this such a clever use of space, and I just love how it looks. I would love to feature this, if you are interested please let me know. I will get you all the details!

  11. Shanice

    I love this! I would love it if you joined and contribute your awesome posts at my link party at City of Creative Dreams, starts on Fridays :D Hope to see you there at City of Creative Dreams Link Party.

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