Creative way to keep track of library books

Summertime is when our family reconnects with our local library. Oh how I wish we were faithful about visiting this magical place all year round! But at least during the summer we are regulars.

This year, I wanted to get smarter about keeping track of all our library books to avoid the dreaded 20-minute hunt for that one missing book that needed returned, like, three days ago.

So I put together this super easy library book holder to corral everything. It probably took me two hours of total work time to complete this project.


Materials needed:

  • Unfinished crate (The one I used is from Crates and Pallet and is available at Home Depot.)
  • Wood stain and finish
  • Thin sheet metal
  • Piece of plexiglass (for the bottom of the crate)
  • Four small screws
  • Letter punch set*

Step 1: Apply a coat of Varathane® stain in Traditional Cherry to the unfinished crate.


Step 2: Cut out a rectangular piece from the sheet metal using tin snips. (I picked up my pair at Home Depot.) This will serve as your “Library” label.


Step 3: Take a hammer and punch the word “Library” into the sheet metal label using the letter punch set.


Step 4: Attach the label to the center of the crate with four small screws. I recommend pre-drilling the holes first to keep the wood from splitting.


Step 5: Apply a coat of Rust-Oleum® Satin Clear Enamel to seal the piece.

Satin-Rust-oleum-enamelStep 6: Add a piece of plexiglass to the bottom of the crate, to keep books from falling through the crack in the bottom. (I stole a piece from an old picture frame in our basement and cut it to fit.)


Step 7: Hang up the holder and enjoy your new, highly organized library book storage system. 🙂

Library book holder


Do you have any tips for how to keep track of library books?

Special thanks to Rust-Oleum for providing some of the supplies needed to complete this project. 

*Affliate link


8 thoughts on “Creative way to keep track of library books

    • My crate already had the spots in the back for screws to slip in. We also made sure to use anchors with our screws, considering the weight of the books.

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