You know how just seeing a favorite book on the shelf conjures up images? For me, Here Comes the Sun! calls forth Blue Hill’s inner bay, the portrait of a Duchess wearing sapphires, and shooting the reversing falls in a rickety outboard.
My book doesn’t look anything like these images, of course. Whether hardback or paperback, the spine is rather uninteresting; it’s my imagination that’s vibrant. Now, along comes a project designed to add a little excitement to our shelves.
A Japanese artist, Monde, produced miniature dioramas to fit among the books on a shelf, and suddenly, the possibilities seem endless.
Some call them “book nooks;” others, “book nook shelf inserts” or “bookshelf dioramas.” Whatever you call them, their construction may take a bit to figure out, but on this small scale, why not give one a try?
Many of us have magazine holders sitting about; that’s a start. Slice open the corners, lay the sides flat, and start creating. Fold them back together from time to time to check the effect, and keep going until you’re satisfied.
As soon as I saw these, I started planning my own, and as with any crafts project, you can go as crazy as you like. Some people use 3-D printers to create their interiors, but construction can be as simple as wraparound photography and a few props.
Scenes with natural depth–a winding pathway, library shelves–are effective, as are densely furnished spaces. What about a dock leading to a moored sailboat and hills in the distance? a hilltop view of Blue Hill Bay? the Samp sisters’ waffle house kitchen?
Scale seems to really be your choice. Dollhouse and model train accessories could be helpful, but maybe you’ll do as well with some balsa wood, an Exacto blade, and some glue.
Beyond the craft aspect–which is very appealing after writing, writing, writing all winter–I love the idea for its ability to excite interest. How much more exciting would the shelf of Emilie’s be in the Blue Hill Public Library, if there were a book nook insert slipped in beside them?
Are you tempted to make a book nook insert of your own? How do you imagine it?
Let’s give everyone a little time, and then we’ll call for photo shares.
Happy designing, everyone!