One of the most irritating things about reading is actually holding the book. After a couple hours, I have to just keep switching positions and it gets pretty tiresome. Or sometimes, like with cookbooks, it’s just nice to have something to keep the book open so sticky fingers don’t get all over it! Plus, when I’m in the bath, I want something to hold my book so I don’t get it all soapy until I’m ready to turn the page! So, I designed a book holder! A sure fire way to pump up the relaxation value of a bath is to add a bath caddy and book holder, you know, so you can read your favorite book or magazine while soaking in bubbles.
Now, if you don’t have a bath caddy, you could spend close to a hundred bucks on one, or make your own for less than $5. I figure I’d rather do the latter! I made this plan for a book holder and bath caddy, but if it’s just the book holder you’re after, feel free to only build that part! Just check out our easy DIY tutorials here and here. Then make this book holder!
What you need:
- 2 Cedar Lattice strips 1 1/2″ x 4′ ($0.25 ea. lumber yard)= $ 0.50
- 1 #10, 3/4” binding post = $1.18
- 2 washers = $0.10
- Waterproof Wood Glue (I estimated that I used about 25 cents worth)
- Galvanized or stainless steel staples (I estimated that I used about 25 cents worth)
Grand Total = $2.28
1. Cut Lattice
For a book sized holder cut two strips 7”, and six strips 10” in length. For a magazine sized holder cut two 8” strips and six 12” strips. Then cut two of the longer strips in half length wise so they are just under 3/4 of an inch wide. Sand edges and ends so the strips are smooth.
2. Create Bracing Legs.
Take two of the 3/4 inch strips and mark the center of each strip, 1 inch from the top edge. Drill a 13/64” hole (or diameter that will fit your binding post). This wood will split out easily so it is a good idea to start with a smaller diameter drill bit and work your way up, say 1/8, 5/32, then 13/64. After the hole has been drilled, cut the slats so that the holes are 1/2” from the top of the slat.
Sand the corners to create a rounded end. Put the binding post through both slats with two #10 washers in the middle (the washers allow the wood to rotate more smoothly without binding).
3. Assemble Holder
Create a tray by gluing and clamping together one long slat with one of the slats that was ripped in half.
While the tray is drying, assemble the back portion of the book holder using glue and staples or clamps.
Attach the tray to the back using glue and/or staples.
4. Size and Attach Bracing
Place the book rack into position on your bath caddy, holding the legs about 3/8 of an inch below the top edge. Adjust the legs so that they hold the book holder in place at the angle that you will enjoy while in use. Make sure that the back leg will rotate freely when the front leg is attached.
Mark the bottom of the caddy slats on both legs, ad the top of the slats on the back leg. Remove the binding post and cut the legs just a hair above the line marking the bottom of the caddy. Attach a piece of wood to the back leg at the line that you drew marking the top of the tray. Sand and reattach the binding post, making sure to place the two washers between the legs. Use Locktight or drop of clear nail polish on the screw of the binding post to prevent it from coming undone with use. Now glue and clamp the front leg to the caddy.
5. Final Sanding
Once the book rack is assembled and the glue is dry, do a final sanding just to round off the edges of the slats and clean up any glue or clamp marks. You know, just make sure that it is nice and smooth everywhere because of that whole NO SLIVERS IN THE BATHTUB rule. That’s it, place on your tub caddy (or on your counter if you’re not into baths) and it’s ready to use.
Now go take a relaxing bath and don’t get any library books wet!