Friday, January 30, 2015

Toy Organizer Repurposed Into Fabric Sling Book Rack

 
This is a post about a fabric sling book rack.  However, instead of posting pictures of the thing and leaving it at that, I am feeling chatty today and have decided you really need to hear the backstory and all of the minute details I would feel compelled to share with you if you happened to be so unfortunate as to enter my home and ask about my newest sewing creation.
 
Consider yourself warned.
 
(Here's your cue to pan down to the end, but you didn't hear that from me. *wink*)
 
Let the rambling commence!
 
There was a problem in my son's room.  Instead of a bookcase, he had a crate.  A bookcrate, if you will.
 
 
I know what you are thinking!  Smart woman. Classy.
 
Oh, he had a shelf in his room on which we could have kept books but I'm no dummy the fourth time around.  That floor shelf was much too conducive to strewing.  Crating is -- you must admit! -- easier on the tired parent than managing the repetitious book liberation of two small children. 
 
Still.  We ain't in college anymore Toto.
 
I've been making an effort to turn his room into a more personal space and though the bookcrate's days were numbered, I couldn't find a solution that didn't involved climb-able wall shelves.  Then I saw this puppy:
 
Smartphone at Toys R Us for the win!
Mobile.  Attractive. Why didn't I think of this?  I could definitely get behind the idea of using a standing bookrack, however, I could not get behind the $39.99 price tag.  I started taking stock of ways I could hack one for less when it occurred to me that our old toy sorter had a similar dowel-rod construction:
 
Pic taken the month my son turned one and a good example of why I wouldn't be putting any of those Pinterest spice-rack-turned-book-racks  (what handy ladders!) on our walls. Also why my husband forbid me to use my Ribba picture ledges from Ikea.
 
Truth be told, these organizers cost entirely too much to be buying new and transforming into a book rack.  I got mine years ago for $20 at Aldi and it's been out of use since my latest playroom reorganization so I had no qualms with repurposing it.
 
FYI, the bins are great and we use them elsewhere, but there's something terrifying about all dozen of them grouped together on the racks according to the original design.  Do you know how long it takes a zealous bin dumper to empty that thing?  Not nearly as long as it takes me to direct the picking up of everything (four million objects at least) that it used to contain!  Anywho-ha, where was I?
 
The toy organizer was out of use until this week.
 
When it got a new lease on life.
 
Da. da. da!

Custom fabric sling bookrack, at your service!
 
I know.  The world is now a more beautiful place.
 
 
Currently there are board books in the top, Golden Book sized books in the middle, and everything else in the bottom.
 
 
The plane fabric is by Ann Kelle (Ready, Set, Go Organic - "Planes in Sky"), something I picked up a couple of years ago.  I think I once bought a pack of identical bandaids from Target.
 
The yellow is a Riley Blake print (Medium Dots in Yellow).
 
 
I think the blue fabric was a 1.25 yard piece and I didn't have enough to line with it.  Hence the yellow.
 
 The top two "racks" hang from the top two sets of rods and the bottom one hangs from the third set and wraps around the bottom two rods.
 
 
And no, I have no idea how it was made ;).  You're on your own with this one!  It wasn't hard, per se, it just took some trial and error to work with the amount of fabric I had on hand and to get the slings to be at the right height.
 
 
Oh, and maybe I should have mentioned before, I cut down the rack to about twenty inches wide and the fabric is removable if you disassemble one side.
 
It's been in the room for a couple of days and thus far the baby loses interest after throwing out only three or four books.
 
Win!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 
In other news, that stool finally got a slipcover.
 
 
It's denim now.
 
 
The underside:
 
 
Two pieces of elastic keep it on.
 
Same fabric as the bed cover and pizza party bag and there was barely enough!  Can you believe these sad scraps represent the last little bit of it?
 
 
My stash is clean out of denim!
 
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 
In other, other news, do you remember those pink curtains?  I thought I should update that the way I made the tabs didn't really work.
 
They started out looking like this:
 
 
But before too long, they preferred to do this:
 
 
The loops were too loose and to fix them, I put in another row of stitching below the rod.
 
 
 
Much better.
 
 
Phew.  End post.  Thanks for reading and have a great day!

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