Monday, February 15, 2010

I Love Books!

My mom and I went thrifting yesterday . It's one of our favorite things to do and it had been quite a few weeks since we had last gone. I've promised myself that I'm not going to buy any more pictures, wall hangings, dishes, any type of nick-knack at all until I have a huge yard sale and get rid of about a million and one things that are already in my garage. So mostly I go to just look and hang out with my mom.

We have a Goodwill that we call the bookstore. Believe it or not, the only thing they sell is books. Tons of books, shelves and shelves of books! It's what I picture heaven to look like only with a food court and a Starbucks and Keanu Reeves behind the counter making my latte!

But I digress. This bookstore has tons of paperbacks for 60 cents and hardbacks for 80 cents. Can you believe it? I visit this store a lot. I usually go every weekend and sometimes I stop by on my way home from work. Hence, I have a ton of books. I have boxes and boxes sitting in the garage that I'm planning to include in my yard sale. The ones that don't sell I will contribute back to Goodwill. Maybe I should donate them to Salvation Army instead, o I don't end up buying them back again.

Some of the prettier books or books I really like I keep and I have them in stacks in my closet until I can get a built in bookcase like this in my living room.

I think a built in bookcase would look perfect on the wall shown in the photo below. This is the wall in my living room that I want the bookcase on.

To the right of the picture is my dining room/kitchen. The door to the left leads to the bedrooms. So it's not a great place to put a television as people are passing in front of it all the time. 

The fireplace isn't real, it's a faux one with one of those little machines that turns red paper against a light and it's supposed to look like fire but it doesn't, plus there's the irritating click, click, click of the little wheel turning! But it was here when I bought the house and until I can have my dream bookcase as shown above I enjoy my little fake fireplace and love to decorate my mantel. The ones in the photo are my Valentines Day Decorations.

My mom bought me these 5 angels at Goodwill almost a year ago and I change the ribbons around their neck to match the different seasons. For Christmas they wore gold ribbons:

For Valentines Day I dressed them up in red ribbons lined with fur. . . Naughty Angels!

I'm thinking I'd love to find some plaid pink, yellow, blue and green for Easter, but it will just have to be whatever there is at the dollar store.

But this post isn't about Angels or seasonal decor, it's about books and what to do with all the books I collect. I found this website that gave me a good idea of what to do with those books until I get my dream bookcase built.

Book Art!  Or as Los Angeles Artist Mike Stilkey calls them Book Sculpture. The artist takes books and uses them create art. Here you see him painting on a stack of books. Click on any of the photos to enlarge.

Here's a whole wall of Book Sculptures. Aren't these amazing? Apparently he gets these books from the trash so he's basically recycling so no harm done. What a great way to reuse books, don't you think and prevent them from being tossed into the trash.

And he has several more photos at this website Books as Art plus you can visit the artists website at

So do you keep your books or do you pass them on as soon as you've read them? Do you re-read books? I have to admit, I don't...but I love to keep the ones I've enjoyed.


  1. You always have the BEST posts, sweetie! How do you find this stuff??

    What an incredible way to re-use old books! That guy is amazing...and I love what he's done.

    I also love your little angels! What a great idea to keep them out and decorate for the holidays. They're adorable.

    I either pass my books on to friends or donate them to the library....but I haven't read a book in FOREVER. I've got about 30 books just waiting for me to find my book-mojo...

  2. Alicia, I dream of having a built in book case like the one you have pictured. I would like a whole room with nothing but books.

    I love books and I love to keep them. My husband doesn't understand my love of books and hates that I keep them. I do my best to weed out books so they don't just sit in a pile. I usually try to sell at yard sale first, then used bookstore and if they don't buy them then I donate them to the goodwill store.

    Oh, and I would love for Keanu Reeves to be behind the counter and wait on me. I actually wrote him a fan letter when he first started out. Of course, I never sent it but I think he's just dreamy.

    I Love your blog a lot and I appreciate all the comments you leave me too.

  3. Oh, Alicia, you and I have alot in commong! I too have tons of books that I bought at thrift stores...that's the ONLY place I buy books from. At last count I had about 800 books and thought that when I retired I'd read them all! Ha! Well, I'm now retired and will never be able to read all those books in my lifetime. So, I bought 3 bookcases from Wal-Mart and keep my most favorite books there (they're not built-in but they look pretty good together). The rest I sorted by "will read" and "will never read". The will-read I keep in clear containers and pick books to read from there; after reading, I pass them on. The "will never read" I did several things: I posted them on and ~ I trade the books for those that I do want. If they don't get swapped, then I donate them back to my library or Salvation Army/Goodwill. Check out those two sites!

  4. Those book sculptures are absolutely amazing! I want one (when I eventually upgrade amd have more room).

    I like to trade books or pass them on to others. I do have some that never leave my book shelf because I know I'll want to keep them in my collection forever. I don't mean to be a book snob, but some are nice to hold on to :)

  5. The book art is wonderful! I bet I have enough books...but I'm not a talented artist.

    I'm a member of my local Friends of the Library so I donate books to our library's April and October used-book sales. I also buy books at those sales so bring almost as many home. Hmmm.

  6. Kathryn - No YOU have the best posts, cause all the stuff you find in your posts is inside your pretty little head! But thank you, I accept your compliment with humble grace!

    I just surf the net I'm lucky to find cool stuff.

  7. ~JarieLyn~ I knew you were a girl after my own heart! Who wouldn't want Keanu Reeves right?

    I know, my family doesn't understand my love of books either or why I want to hang on to them.

  8. Rita E - Thanks for the links to Bookmooch and paperbackswap. I will definitely check them out. I also belong to freecycle where you recycle your stuff for free so it doesn't end up in the landfill. I didn't think to use it for books,but I will now. Thanks and I'm glad we have so much in common.

  9. Charlotte - You should really go visit the artists website, he has lots of other sculptures using books that require less room. Maybe you can do one of those?

  10. Stine in Ontario - I think our library does the same thing here, I'll have to check into that. Thanks for the idea :-)

  11. I have the same sickness, I have over 150 books in my "suitcase" tower in the hallway. I rarely re-read a book unless it's one of my dearest and favorites.

    lately I've been taking them to work and leaving in the break room. With our cutbacks and income decrease at work, it's one way I can give back to my friends and co-workers.

    I love the book art, it's amazing what can be done with ordinary objects that create extraordinary results.

  12. This is a great post. I love thrifting and I love books. We had 3 built in bookcases added to our house. One one each side of the fireplace in the family room and one at the end of our 2nd floor hall where I kept all the children's books when the kids were little. As for thrifting...I can't post about it too much anymore as my husband started reading my blog - and then he would know all the things I am sneaking into the house. ;)

  13. Yegods that art is amazing! Your cherubs are darned cute too :)


Please leave a comment.I would love to know your thoughts!