How To: Make a Hanging Book Display

Megan's February Jumpstart Project 2009

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Title: Hanging Book Display
Name: Megan
Time: 1-4 hours, depending on how handy you are with a sewing machine and tools
Cost: $5-10 for fabric, $13 for hardware/dowels. More if you don't have basic tools and sewing supplies

A great solution to help pre-readers to choose their own books.. Click above for pics, below for the how-to and be sure to give Megan a THUMBS UP if you find this project helpful....

Tools:
-A 47-inch by 40-inch piece of fabric (I used Amy Butler’s “daisy bouquet” ) -Two double curtain rod brackets. I bought mine for about $5 each at Lowes, but here are some I found online -Two, 4-foot long wooden dowels or curtain rods that fit into the brackets. Drill and drill bits -Level -Stud finder -Pencil -General sewing supplies, like a sewing machine, thread and scissors -Optional: paint, paintbrush and sandpaper (options 1 and 2) and wooden balls or other end caps for the dowels (option 3).

Steps:
We’re bonkers for books at our house, but allowing our 3-year-old daughter to choose her own every night before bedtime can be a lesson in patience. She’s a dilly dallier as it is, but what makes it harder is that her bookcase, like most bookcases, only displays the spines of the books. Since she can’t read the book titles, she pulls every book off the shelf until she recognizes the cover art of the one she wants. I made this hanging book display to help solve that problem. It’s modeled after school-grade book display cases that show the fronts of books, and hopefully will make choosing a bedtime book easier (and faster!). Instructions: -Fold the fabric lengthwise, with right sides facing, so you are working with a double thickness rectangle that is 47 inches by 20 inches. -Using a 1/2-inch seam, sew the fabric together around one of the short sides, the long side and about half-way down the other short side. -Turn the fabric right side out through the opening, poking out the corners with a turning tool (a pencil will do—just don’t poke all the way through). -Sew the opening shut by folding the raw edges toward each other, then top stitching down that short end of the rectangle. -Now you’ll need to sew casings for the dowels on the two long ends of the rectangle. You can either do this by measuring the circumference of the dowels and folding that amount of fabric, plus a bit, over or actually laying down the dowel, wrapping the fabric over it, and pinning it along the side of the dowel until you’ve created a tube that holds it. -Remove the dowels (if you chose the latter route) and sew the casings. -It’s time to hang the hardware on the wall. Locate two studs four feet apart on the wall where you want to hang the book holder. (Note: my studs were four feet apart. It’s not a bad idea to find your studs before you start the project and make a book hanger that aligns with your studs. Or just use those little plastic things they sell to hold screws in the wall). -Test out the locations with the dowels. You don’t want the curtain rod brackets to be so far apart that the dowels don’t reach, but you don’t want them so close that the fabric gets bunchy. Mark the stud locations lightly with a pencil. Using a level, mark the points where you want the brackets. Pre-drill holes for the screws. Screw the brackets onto the wall. Hang the fabric on the dowels, then insert the dowels into the brackets. The brackets should come with tiny screws that tighten onto the dowels, holding them in place. Load with books. If you screwed the hardware into studs your book holder should be able to handle a good amount of weight, but don’t go too crazy. Option 1: Before getting started, you could paint the ends of your dowels a color that matches the décor of the room or the fabric. Option 2: If you don’t like the color of the brackets, you could paint that, too, with a paint that adheres to metal. Sand the metal first so the paint has something to grab onto. Option 3: In addition to or in place of the tiny screws that hold the dowels in place, you could cap off the ends of the dowels with a cute wooden ball or some clever object. I plan to do this but haven’t found the right thing yet. Option 4: The brackets don’t jut out very far at all, but if you’re worried about someone bonking their head, sew slipcovers for them with a little padding inside. Option 5: If you have enough wall space, make four or five of these and install them above one another. It could be cute to make a rainbow-like display—red patterned fabric for the top one, orange for the next, then yellow, blue, green, and purple.

Sources:
See Links Above
Give Megan a THUMBS UP if you find this project helpful....

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