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Reuse and Redecorate! 7 Bookends You Don’t Have to Buy

Reuse and Redecorate! 7 Bookends You Don’t Have to Buy

Reorganizing and redecorating your bookshelves doesn’t have to mean a trip to the store. You needn’t buy expensive bookends to hold your tomes together on the shelf. Instead, rummage around the house for items that are weighty and attractive. You’re bound to come up with something more unusual than those brass numbers you see in catalogs and department stores. And you’ll help save the planet in the process. Here are some ideas!

1. Small jars filled with beads, shells, marbles, or colored sand.
2. Decorative beer steins.
3. Ceramic pitchers or crockery.
4. Duck decoys.
5. Piggy banks filled with change.
6. Small baskets filled with gourds. (Shellac the gourds to preserve them.)
7. Dolls or teddy bears. (Try ones that are tall enough to slide into the bookshelf in a sitting position, with their heads barely touching the bottom of the shelf above).

Adapted from Vinegar, Duct Tape, Milk Jugs & More, by Earl Proulx (Rodale Books, 1999).

For more on reducing and reusing things, read Sustainable Dave’s blog To Buy or Not to Buy: Is There Really a Question? or learn all about Freecycling things you no longer need, or finding free items instead of buying new.

Read more: Home, Reduce, Recycle & Reuse, , , , ,

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Annie B. Bond

Annie is a renowned expert in non-toxic and green living. She was named one of the top 20 environmental leaders by Body and Soul Magazine and "the foremost expert on green living." - Body & Soul Magazine, 2009. Learn Annie's latest eco-friendly news on, a website dedicated to healthy and green living.

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Vinegar, Duct Tape, Milk Jugs & More

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1:54PM PDT on May 10, 2013

Good ideas,thanks for sharing

11:06AM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

Thanks for the ideas.

7:48AM PDT on Sep 7, 2011

Thank you

9:10PM PDT on Mar 28, 2011

Good one!

10:57PM PDT on Oct 28, 2010

great ideas for bookends. thank you. i'll use them for dvd's, cd's and books too.

3:19AM PDT on Oct 28, 2010


11:06AM PDT on Sep 28, 2010

I like the idea of putting the doll or teddy bear as a bookend for your tomes. Thanks

3:53AM PDT on Aug 28, 2010

good one.

9:52AM PDT on Mar 28, 2010

Haha, I agree with Cheryl. My bookshelves are so crowded, they don't need anything to hem them in:)

1:37PM PST on Feb 28, 2010

You have space on your bookshelves that isn't filled with books? Interesting.....

We have board games stacked on top of the bookcase although they could be used as an attractive space filler.

I've also used wooden fruit crates that I've stacked as quite reasonable bookshelves. It helps keep things organized by topic and the crates are always a good conversation starter.

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