Add Style to Your Shelves with DIY Letter Bookends

Decorate your bookshelf with chic concrete letters that start with a basic cardboard template.

Cardboard letters become the perfect mold for these easy concrete bookends.

Add instant style to a drab bookcase with monogrammed bookends. This concrete craft adds personal style to your home in just a weekend. All you need is a cardboard letter form, concrete mix, a dowel, and a few other household supplies. 

Before you begin, choose a set of letters that mean something to you. Initials are an obvious choice, but also consider acronyms or a classic A and Z. Whatever you choose, the end result is sure to be fresh and fabulous, plus keep books and journals in place. 

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What You Need

  • Cardboard letter form
  • Utility knife
  • Vegetable oil
  • Paintbrush
  • Concrete mix
  • Dowel
  • Wire cutters

Step 1: Prep Letter

With a utility knife, cut away the backside of your cardboard letter. Remove the interior cardboard, and trim away any stray edges. Once the cardboard is clean, paint the interior of the letter with vegetable oil. This helps the concrete pop out of the form once it's dry. 

Step 2: Add Concrete

Mix concrete according to package directions. Pour into the cardboard letter form, then tap the letter against a hard surface (like a table) to remove any air bubbles.

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Step 3: Add Dowel

While the concrete's still wet, cut a dowel down to three inches. Stick it into the letter, near the bottom. This will help the letter stand on its own. Let the concrete dry for a few hours. 

Step 4: Finishing Touches

Once the concrete has set, peel away the cardboard letter. Let the concrete cure overnight, then trim down the dowel as needed. If desired, sand away rough edges pf the concrete letter with sandpaper. 

How to Arrange and Decorate a Bookshelf

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