Print book lovers have a hard time letting go of their hardcovers for many reasons, but one oft-cited point is that books are just too beautiful ― and shelves full of your favorite reads can’t be beat as decor. But, then again, why stop there?
Pippa Branham, a DIYer and reader from Liverpool who recently moved with her husband and young daughter into their first permanent home, escalated books-as-decor to another level by painting the staircase to resemble the spines of her and her husband’s favorite books.
Branham told BuzzFeed that she was inspired by a photo she saw on Pinterest, but that there were no instructions; instead, she had to use her own crafter’s ingenuity to make the project work. To keep the paint from being too slippery to safely walk on, she settled on “mixing a small amount of children’s play sand in with the paint,” and she sealed the stairs with a clear varnish spray to prevent wear and tear.
Safe to say that most of us don’t have the steady hands or the patience to attempt Branham’s project, which she told BuzzFeed took 35 hours to complete. But we can enjoy the photos she shared of her finished project, which looks like a TBR pile we’d like to have on our bedside tables: J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights, George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones, and more fantastical favorites. In an email to HuffPost, she wrote that there were “so many” books she would have added to the list, if the staircase had more steps. A couple top candidates: “Clive Barker’s Weaveworld and Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series.”
Branham told HuffPost that she and her husband, Jonathan, had both read all the books, but he had a few specific requests for inclusion: C.S. Lewis’ Space Trilogy, George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones, and Stephen King’s Dark Tower book Wolves of the Calla.
Branham told HuffPost she picked certain books “based on the fact that I frequently wish I had never read them so I could experience reading them for the first time!”
Even the specific spines selected, she says, have sentimental value. ““The particular spines were chosen based on the spines which matched the book I had read at the time I read them, rather than just the book covers which are available now,” she said to BuzzFeed. In some cases, that meant tracking down out-of-print covers of books she’s taken out from the library or borrowed.
Talk about the nostalgic power of a print book. There’s really nothing like it ― except, maybe, a colorful staircase that pays tribute to all your faves.