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What I've Learned: (book) Display

March 6, 2012

Ever since I was a wee one I’ve Loved books. I Love the smell of books. The feel of books. What’s inside them, covering them  and what they’re made from. As an adult I find myself perusing book shelves at local bookstores now to see how the book is made; whether they have end sheets, if they’re sewn, and if they have real head bands or not. As times have changed, and as Etsy and handmade have become more of a staple in everyday lives I see the books on the shelves at big name book stores to be changing too. Once, where I could only find Moleskines, I now found coptic stitched exposed binding journals along with leather bound journals filled with handmade paper. They’re trying to compete. But they won’t win. You wanna know why? Because we know better how to display our work – how to put it out there and make it look good because it is better than good. It’s truly handmade, by a single person in their own home or studio and not in some factory in Thailand.

Alas- I digress. This is supposed to be about display. We all know the everyday way to display books. On a shelf. Spine facing outward. Yes, that’s how we display our titled books, our fiction and non-fiction, our biographies and how-to’s. But how do we display our journals? Our art books? Our sketchbooks? Our wedding guest books and baby books? The spine does not do the talking for these books; it does not give it justice alone. No, the covers of these books stand out, as well as the spines, and tops and bottoms and everything in between. Which is exactly why book-makers yearn and strive for a display that a) displays their work and does it justice and b) begs the audience/buyer/journaller/artist to pick it up and flip through its blank pages that are begging to be filled!

I’ve worked on my display long and hard over the past three years. I began with a suitcase and a book shelf. That moved into clear plastic containers that REALLY quickly morphed into wooden serving trays. Soon that turned into handmade shelves made from a real downed tree and scrap wood from my parents’ garage. And now, I’m eyeing pallets for all their worth. But pallets seem to be VERY heavy and bulky, so we’ll see where this next swing takes us. But for now, I wanted to share with you some of my awesome Pinterest book shelf pallet finds!

Clockwise from top left:

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