How to build a bookshelf out of a vinyl rain gutter – DIY
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.
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.
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
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.
Carefully cut along the mark. Make sure to wear protective eyewear and cut in a safe place and on safe surfaces.
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.
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!
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!
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!