Tilted Bookcase Tiny Coffee Shop

There’s a new tiny house kit style out that’s in the shape of a book; you build the street scene inside the book with it open, and then you close it and put the book on your shelf so the scene’s viewable only when you peer into the spine.

Clearly, this is not one of those! I’ve been a little chicken to try one, so I thought this would be a compromise kit: kind of like a bookcase item, kind of like a regular tiny house with details inside and out.

Deceivingly Simple Construction

Turns out it’s also a compromise in the fun department. There weren’t a lot of small details to fuss over (close to zero upholstery to make, which is my favorite), and instead were way too many large slabs of wood that needed covering with paper. That’s boring work, plus I managed to screw it up, twice.

My mistakes add to the silliness though, like how “luck” is misspelled in several places. And, books with big Christian crosses on the covers apparently are major reading at American coffee shops. Oh yeah, be sure to order a straw to drink your coffee with. Who does the content quality control with these things?

Moving Parts

After I got the main book covers constructed, though, this kit became more rewarding to build.

What’s cool is that the book on the left tilts as if it were really in a bookcase. Bummer that the designers didn’t make the “house” part of the book at an angle, too. Also bummer that I cut the faux leather of that book’s cover wrong and had to piece it together basically everywhere.

Still, the tilt works! I glued the bottom edge of the book to the base just enough so it won’t slide around in transit (always a factor for me).

Peering Inside

I was most excited about creating little scenes inside each book so you could see the lives of the people inside when you peer in the windows. Those turned out to be oddly unsatisfying.

They looked so plain when I made them, and, then, you can see so little when it’s all put together and you look inside.

The illusions work, though! Those newspapers were especially fun to cut out and arrange on the rack.

I forgot to take a photo of this room before I closed up the book, so this is all you see of the chandelier, sofa, and odd little table with some kind of jelly roll and flowers on it. I should have made a table lamp; the overhead lighting is too bright for such a small room.

When will someone pay me to design these things?

Kitties and Flowers

The little kitties scattered throughout are adorable.

The flowers nearly made me give up with their fragile petals and too-large stamens, but now that they’re in place, they look nice!

Tiny Alley

The alley is by the book that tilts, and there are several scenes in there that can’t be seen with the book tilted in. I guess that’s part of the charm?

I disassembled it all a little to take photos. I so think it would look more interesting with a little paved pathway winding through; I wish I’d thought of that before I glued the plants and signs to the base!

Cool Details

I like the street lamp, plus the green filament I finally figured out how to spread along the tile on the ground realistically. I have a lot of that left over so I might go back and spread it more liberally.

I also used it to cover up the seams that show on the faux leather book cover. Rats that I put down so much before I learned to place it as if it were growing in the cracks.

The pages parts of the books (what’s called the “text block”) have these ornate covers. Is this a thing for old hardback books? (I couldn’t find anything like it when I searched online.) It makes for an interesting effect, though, especially when lit.

Mystery Fate

My photography never shows how small these things are.

Here it’s by my 11-inch iPad and Tracy’s work gloves, and it’s smaller than both.

What to do with it, though? Because of my mistakes with the paper application on the books, I hate to give it to anyone; it’s sloppy. But I don’t want to throw it away, either. My friend in Edmonton, Jess, took a tiny house when we saw her last summer, so maybe I’ll hit her up again. Problem is she is so careful with her crafting (her knitting is more artwork than craft) that she’s going to see my mistakes right off.

Maybe I’ll give this to her in the dark!

2 thoughts to “Tilted Bookcase Tiny Coffee Shop”

  1. I came so close to buying a similar style kit in Edmonton when I was there last. It wasn’t a book per se, just in a narrow book-like case that you could put on a bookcase with books. The one I really liked was a small traditional Japanese alley with shops on either side but they didn’t have it in stock. The only thing I didn’t like was the lack of fine detail that you’ve accustomed me too over the last couple years! There are people on YouTube that make their own tiny houses from scratch and they’re crazy ingenious. I bet you’re amongst them before long 😁

    1. I’ll have to text you with a photo of the one I think you’re thinking of – I’ve been waiting for it to be in stock and just received it. You flatter me!