DIY (and totally cute) punctuation bookends

It’s not exactly a secret that I love reading. I’m always working through a novel (or two), and typically have three to four more lined up to dive into next. Reading has always been an escape and a joy for me—which might explain why the bulk of the boxes I recently moved with were stuffed to the seams with books!

Lots of books means lots of bookshelves, and the wish to fill them creatively. This week’s DIY will help you do just that: a pair of hand-painted bookends, complete with some quirky punctuation as a nod to your love of the written word. I chose a question mark and an exclamation point for mine, but any character would look awesome.


  • Two 3 1/2-inch by 1 3/4-inch by 7-inch wooden blocks
  • Paint in two bright colors
  • Foam paintbrush
  • 1/2-inch bristle paintbrush
  • Two paint-safe dishes
  • Piece of paper
  • Ballpoint pen
  • Measuring tape
  • Craft scissors

Craft away:

Cover your work station with scratch paper. Pour a small amount of the base color paint into a paint-safe dish. Apply a thin, even layer of the paint to both wooden blocks with the foam paintbrush. Leave the bottoms of the blocks unpainted. Let dry completely, and if needed, add a second coat of paint.

Trace the widest side of one of the blocks twice onto the piece of paper. Draw a question mark in the middle of one of the shapes, and an exclamation point in the other (or whatever characters you want!). The characters should be about 6 1/2-inches tall. Cut out the characters to make stencils.

Re-cover your work station with the scratch paper. Pour a small amount of the second color of paint into another paint-safe dish. Layer the stencils over the wood blocks one at a time, and use the bristle paintbrush to paint on the characters. Remove the stencils, and dry completely.

Use your crafty new accessories to to prop up (and dress up) your book collection!

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