My son needed new shelves for his room (we ran out of room on the last shelves). I figured it’d be the perfect time to make DIY rainbow bookends as a gift! These are pretty easy to build- they’re quick and simple and look so cute on a shelf! Plus they’re functional as they keep books from falling over. Let’s get into the tutorial-
how to diy rainbow bookends
Let’s start with the video tutorial so you get an overview on what I did. Then, I’ll dive in with more details below:
If the video doesn’t work here, you can watch it on YouTube here. I’d be over the moon happy if you subscribed to my YouTube channel! Videos are actually released on YouTube first (usually the night before they’re published on the blog). Thank you!
- 12″ round circle also available at Michaels or Target (makes 2 sets of bookends)
- 1×4 board
- Paint- Ultra pure white, 1. Beloved Pink, 2. Shy Smile, 3. Ballet Rose, 4. Lamplit, 5. Corn Stalk, 6. Frittata, 7. Sparkling Brook, 8. Green Aqua, 9. Mirador, 10. Tinted Ice, 11. Early September, and 12. Blue Chalk
- Paint Brush
- 1-1/4″ long nails for the nail gun
How much did this project cost you? For this project I spent $9 on the round piece of wood. I had all the paint on hand and I used wood from my scrap pile. So these cost me $9. Not bad for two sets of bookends!
step 1- cut materials
Start by cutting the wood to the correct sizes. Below is a cut list-
Cut List (for 2 pair of bookends)
- 4 – 1×4. Cut to 6 5/8″ long (sides)
- 4 – 1×4. Cut to 5 7/8″ long (base)
- 4 – 12 Round Circle. Cut into 4 equal pieces- 5 3/4″ long (arch)
To cut the arch, we first marked the center then used a ruler to draw out the cut lines.
Then we used a table saw to cut the wood on the pencil marks.
To cut the base, we used a miter saw and did straight cuts on the 1×6 board.
Since all the pieces of wood were a little rough, I sanded them until they became smooth.
step 2- assemble the cut wood
Next, attach the long base piece to the side piece to create the base of the bookend. To do this, pre drill holes and then use two screws on the bottom.
Once the base is put together, use a brad nailer to attach on the arch. Mark with a pencil the center of the base so it’s easy to tell where the nails will go.
We used 6 nails per bookend- three on the side and three on the base.
step 3- bookend prep
And now, it’s time to prep the bookends for paint. First, use wood filler and fill any of the nail or screw holes. Let dry and then sand smooth.
Next give the whole thing a coat of white paint. Mine ended up taking 3 coats of paint.
Between the 1st and 2nd coat of paint, I added caulk along all the seams for a clean look.
Use a pencil to draw on arches. To do this, I just eye balled the outside arch to make the inside arches. I choose to do three arches per bookend.
Last, I used artist paint brushes to paint on the arches. I choose to do monochrome rainbows to coordinate with the bookcase. This project is fun because any color can be used to personalize it to the space or person using it.
I’m so excited to show you how the DIY rainbow bookends turned out!
I think they look so fun and are perfect for a kids room!
classic kids books
The books I used for this shelf are mostly from the Barnes and Noble Leather-bound collection. There’s also the Rifle Paper Co Penguin Class books, Puffin Clothbound Classics, and a few vintage books my sister found thrifting. I also purchased some of the Wordsworth Collector’s Edition they are really beautiful too.
If you want to collect classic kids book, I thought I’d write out a list of the titles I suggest.
Barnes and Noble Books-
This is my favorite place to get books. They are hardbound, have a built in ribbon book mark, gold leafing on the pages, and beautiful illustrations.
- Aesop’s Fables
- Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
- Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland
- A Little Princess
- Aladdin and the Arabian Nights
- Anne of Green Gables
- Black Beauty
- Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
- Greek Myths
- Grimm’s Fairy Tales
- Jane Eyre
- Journey to the Center of the Earth
- Peter Pan
- Peter Rabbit
- Pride and Prejudice
- Sense and Sensibility
- The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
- The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
- The Blue Fairy Book
- The Call of the Wild
- The Little Mermaid
- The Secret Garden
- The Story of King Arthur
- The Wind in the Willows
- The Wizard of Oz
- Robin Hood
- Treasure Island
- Twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea
- Where the Sidewalk Ends
- Winnie the Pooh
Puffin Clothbound Classics-
- Around the World in Eighty Days
- Charlotte’s Web
- Little Women
- Oliver Twist
- Tarka the Otter
Rifle Paper Co.-
Wordsworth Collector’s Edition-
- Great Expectations
- Hound of the Baskervilles
- Jungle Book
- The Great Gatsby
- The Little Prince
- The Railway Children
- Wuthering Heights
Any questions on this project? Let me know in the comments.
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