Your Hardware Store Has Just What You Need For An Easy And Modern DIY Bookend

Whether you want to display your favorite literature on something other than a bookshelf or your collection isn't quite big enough to stop your books from falling over in your bookcase, bookends are always a good idea. Luckily, making them on your own is as easy as can be — all you need to do is spray paint some cobblestones from your local hardware store. 

Bookworms are fairly accustomed to finding clever ways to keep their stashes upright, so cobblestones placed on either side of the collection might not sound too out-there. However, what makes this hack stand apart is just how easy it is to achieve something that looks so luxe. Truly, the toughest part of the process is sourcing the cobblestones and selecting your preferred shade of paint.

In case you haven't already figured it out, this is also a decidedly budget-friendly hack. Of course, the price of the cobblestones will vary from retailer to retailer but expect to keep your budget in the ballpark between $1.39 and $4.10. As for the spray paint, that'll set you back around $6 on Walmart's website — though you could also always use whatever you have lying around from past projects. Chic, cheap, and easy bookends ... here we come.

Select your stones, spray, and you're done

To source your cobblestones, head to your local hardware store. Even if they don't have any in stock, they may be able to direct you to a place that will. Alternatively, there are a few options online so don't hesitate to scan the web for nearby cobblestone sources.

Once you've purchased your stones, start off by washing them to remove any bits of dust and debris. For this, experts recommend that you use either a pressure washer or, if you're up for a bigger task, a brush. Either way, just be sure to leave the stones to dry before moving onto the next step. 

When the stones are dry, pop them onto some newspaper and spray them to your liking. Again, leave them to dry. If you're using the Rust-Oleum metallic paint from Walmart, that should take around 20 minutes, though we'd recommend holding off for a little longer just to be on the safe side — after all, no one wants paint sticking to their book collections. Once everything is dry, you can start playing around with the stacks of books around your home. That could mean popping them on either side of your favorite cookbooks on your kitchen countertops, using them to keep a selection of your best-loved novels upright above the fireplace, or as functional decor in your actual bookshelf. The possibilities are endless. 

Customize the cobblestones according to your preference

If solid color isn't your vibe, you could also add some interesting details to your cobblestones using faux painting techniques. Grab a makeup sponge (under $4 on Amazon for a pack of 32), dab it into some acrylic metallic paint (under $5 on Amazon), and stipple it across the otherwise bare stone. You can also get a similar effect by using an old rag instead of a sponge. Already got a can of spray paint? Spray it onto some bubble wrap or a balled-up plastic bag and dab it onto the cobblestone. 

For those with an artistic flair, you could even paint rectangular cobblestones to look like books, à la YouTuber How To Oregon. Simply paint the stones a solid color, then use different-colored markers to write on the title of the books and draw on publisher logos.

Not a fan of the painted cobblestones or simply prefer more natural elements? You could also forgo paint altogether. Once you've washed the stone as suggested above, simply allow it to dry, then pop it into place. That way it's simple, even more affordable, and just as chic.