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How to build a bookshelf out of a vinyl rain gutter – DIY

How to make a Rain Gutter Bookshelf

My girls have a bunk bed in their room and our oldest has the top bunk. She loves to read! Recently we took off over 127 books off her bed. These are not the beginner books, but large chapter books, science books, dictionaries, and instructional how to manuals which she loves to read. Anything and everything she will read but mainly items that shows her how to do things or fun facts about things.

This past Christmas we bought her the basic version of the Kindle so she got read books without having the mess all over her bed. Literally she would sleep on her books, she loves them so much.  She loves to read both of them now. Each night she may read for 2-3 hours before we finally tell her to turn it off  and go to bed. I really feel bad telling her to stop reading, but she will read all night long if we let her. So with all of these books on her bed, even after the consolidation effects of the Kindle tablet.

Make Vinyl Rain Gutter Book shelf cheap

So we headed to the local hardware store and looked around for things that I could put together for a bookshelf. The space I had in mind was the ledge above her rails of the top bunk along the back wall and headboard. I wanted to build a wood shelf but figured it would take too much time and cost more than I wanted to spend. So walking down the outdoor isle near the wood I saw rain gutters. The vinyl rain gutter was the perfect fit for the gap between the wall and the bunk bed, and it had the lip the books needed to stay up and not fall out. So I grabbed the end caps and hangers and a 90 degree elbow. This entire project only cost about $24.

rain gutter book shelf


Here are the items you need.

  • Vinyl Rain gutter – color of your choice
  • Hangers – at least 2 for each length, on the long section you may want three hangers
  • 90 degree elbow if you want to extend it down another wall
  • End caps for either end
  • Wood screws to attach the hanger to the wall studs
  • A hand held saw, like a sawzall or even an inexpensive hand saw
  • Tape measure
  • crayon

Rain Gutter Book Shelf kids room

First determine the length and position of where you want the gutters. We only used one 10 foot length of vinyl gutter and cut the section where we wanted it to extend 90 degrees down the other wall.

Fun thing about this DIY project is it doesn’t need to be exact or even cut pretty. Because the end caps will cover the exposed ends.

how to build a rain gutter book shelf

Carefully cut along the mark. Make sure to wear protective eyewear and cut in a safe place and on safe surfaces.

how to make a rain gutter book shelf

On the end of each upper edge you will need to remove about 1 inch of the lip the curls over. This is so it can be slid over the 90 degree elbow. See below.

If you are only making a straight book shelf then skip that part.

building a kid book shelf out of rain gutters

Next slide the hanger brackets onto the sections. These can slide up and down the gutter and can be positioned exactly on the wood stud on the wall. No need to worry about placement and positioning, simply slide it to where it needs to be. How easy!how to hang a rain gutter book shelf

Next snap on the end caps. The black gasket ring is for the rain but since this is inside, and unless you have a jungle in your kids room you wont need to worry about that! Just make sure you get it snapped on so you don’t see it and looks better!

install a rain gutter book shelf

Now you can enlist the kids to help you hold the rain gutter to the wall – close to where you want it. The fun part about this is you just need to screw in one screw per hanger bracket, so you can leave one end of the gutter hanging down a few inches without worrying about the proper position. Just screw in the screw into the stud, and move down to the next hanger.

Next add books, stuffed animals and other fun items the kids will enjoy!

Vinyl Rain Gutter bookshelf

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Filed Under: A Thrifty Dad, DIY, Look What I Made, Thrifty Craft Ideas, Thrifty Crafts for Kids, Thrifty ways to save

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Thanks to Living life and loving every second  for this money saving tip on how to make your own lace head band.  Cute, trendy, useful and budget friendly… love it!

You will need:

  • Lace (mine was not stretch
  • Jersey Knit
  • Sewing Machine
  • Scissors
  • Elastic

First cut your jersey fabric into a strip about 6 inches wide then fold in half hot dog style and measure around your head then subtract an inch and cut. Sew along the raw edges from end to end and when your finished pull the tube right side out and slide that seam to the middle so it is not visible and flat on one side. Pin and sew the lace on. Final step you will now measure what you have around your head again and figure out the length of elastic you need cut it and tuck it into the opening on both ends and sew shut. VOILA YOUR DONE!

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Thanks to Purposely Frugal  for passing along this recipe for how to make baked potatoes in the crock pot (instead of the oven).  We have a rule in our family that we never leave the house with the oven on… so I love this idea.  Plus on a hot summer day the last thing you want is your oven on all day.  Not an issue in winter ( heck most days I want to snuggle up to my oven just to stay warm…lol.)

baked potatoes in the crock pot

  1. Scrub and pat dry your potatoes
  2. Poke a few holes in them with a  fork.
  3. Rub in oil (I used olive oil) and salt.
  4. Wrap in aluminium foil and put in your crock pot. I cooked 6 potatoes on low for 7 hours, but you may need to vary the cooking time, based on the size and number of potatoes and your crock pot.
  5. Enjoy with your favorite toppings!
No need to add water to the bottom but to keep the bottom ones from burning rotate them OR add some crumbled foil on the bottom before you add the potatoes.

Crock Pot Tip: A crock pot uses about 8 cents of electricity in 7 hours, whereas an oven uses between 16-24 cents per hour of use. I know the savings is small, but crock pots also keep your house cooler in the summer! Information from Michael Bluejay, a.k.a Mr. Electricity.

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Thanks to Free Printable Party Invitations for passing along this adorable FREE  printable pool party invite template.

Do you have a fun Summer Pool Party  planned but need a Thrifty invite?  Check out these adorable FREE  printable pool party invites! Love how cute these are, and the price it even better:)

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Thanks to  Tales of Domestica for this money saving  idea for using  old crayons to make new crayons.  I have never tried this before but have always wanted too… I know my kids would love it!

First step to make new crayons,  you will need to take the paper off your old broken crayons.  Then sort your crayons into like colors.  The kids like it, plus it is great for them to learn to sort and group items together.

Next add like colors into a tin can, or an old pot.  If you use a tin can put it into another pot with water around it to make a double boiler of sorts. Over low heat melt your crayons.

 Once your crayons are melted pour them into the  silicone ice cube trays. Allow to cool then pop from the molds.  Then let your little ones color and have fun with their new crayons.  Who knew it was so simple to make your own crayons.

More activities, projects and fun things to do with your kids.

Dirt and Worms ~ Fun summer recipe for kids
 Make your own Crayons ~ Activities to do with kids
Be a Back Yard Detective ~ Activities to do with kids
Wiggle Worm Game ~ Games to do with kids
Make your own Bean Bag Toss ~ Games to do with Kids
Watch a Local Race ~ Frugal Family Activities to do
Corn Starch Gak Science Project to do with kids
Color Collage with ads from the paper
DIY Chime Set ~ Music Fun For Kids
Recipe for Homemade Slime
 Under the Sea Art Project for kids
Balloon Barrettes DIY Kids Fashion
Lady Bugs made out of an egg carton
Exploding Soap ~ Microwave Science For Kids
Horse made out of a pop bottle
Thanksgiving Crafts for Kids ~ Paper Turkeys
Easy Kid Games ~ Turn Easter Eggs Into Reading Games for Kids
 Math Games For Kids
Learn to tell time ~ Time Games for kids
 Frozen Popcorn
Frozen Snowball Pops  
FROZEN Rice Krispy Treats
 Blue Jello Cake Recipe
Magical Moving Milk Science Experiment 
How to make Flubber
Lava Lamp Bottle
Cupcakes In A Cone
How to make Ice Cream In a Bag


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Are you looking for a great Cinco De Mayo Recipe…. here is one to try. Thanks to Hot Eats Cool Reads for this  saving money recipe for Easy and Cheap Homemade Salsa. I too am a huge salsa fan.  My favorite is  restaurant style salsa so this recipe has me all excited :)
I love salsa. The stuff from the stores just doesn’t cut it though. We eat alot of Mexican food at our house and buying fresh tomatoes to make a batch of salsa sometimes isn’t affordable. That’s where this recipe comes in. It is so CHEAP! It uses canned tomatoes instead of fresh and it’s even cheaper that the jarred stuff at the supermarket. Not to mention it tastes pretty darn good and you can use so many different ingredients to switch up the flavor! It was also great added in with the Vegetarian Taco Dip recipe. Enjoy!!
What you need:
2- 14.5 oz diced tomatoes (regular or Mexican style)
1 small can diced green chiles
1/4 bunch cilantro
2 cloves garlic
2 whole green onions
1/2 tbsp sugar
salt and pepper
additional add-ins:
anaheim pepper
bell pepper
Mince all ingredients in a food processor except tomatoes. Add tomatoes, pulse a couple more times, or until it reaches the consistency you prefer. Refrigerate before serving!

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