Saturday, August 3, 2013

Industrial Spring Book Rack

While visiting an auto scrap yard last weekend, I stumbled upon (quite literally) a large coil spring. The spring was from the front suspension of a full-size truck. While walking around, I began seeing many more. Could I have found the treasure trove of industrial elements to repurpose? I think so! Flywheels and other neat cogs and gears were also littered around the yard, waiting to be reclaimed. So many ideas came to mind...welded sculptures, wall art, table leg ideas, etc.

After handing over $5.00, I left with my cool industrial element full of character and rusty patina. I enjoy using such items simply as decorative elements much in the manner of Restoration Hardware. I'm often impressed with the creative minds behind their room staging. Many, "why didn't I think of that" thoughts cross my mind in awe when I flip through their sourcebooks. Nonetheless, I'm often impressed when I come up with some clever ideas of my own (who isn't?)

Industrial Spring Book Rack
Junkyard Auto Suspension Spring Repurposed

In its simplest form, this big spring could be displayed on its own as a decorative focal feature. After a day of that, I decided to stand it upright and place it carefully over a cleaned out yankee candle jar with a lit tealight within.

Used as a candle display?

That look was O.K., but I ultimately decided to give it more of a an industrial book rack.

Simple Style

Free books wrapped in brown craft paper and lightly roughed-up with sandpaper unify the look.

One end of the spring tapers and winds smaller as a decorative scroll-like element.

I often see unique items used as industrial and/or rustic bookends, 

Old Pulley Bookends
Courtesy of Home Decorators Collection


Vise Bookends (available at Amazon
Courtesy of Home Decorators Collection

so why not expand on that idea of propping up books but in a more unique manner?

Although not able to stack or hold a volume of books, my big industrial spring creates a clever tabletop feature similar to the use of a vintage wooden vice for displaying books (below).  

Wooden vise from local antique shop
repurposed as a book holder.

Other ideas for the spring?  Well, I could see it spiraled around 
the exterior of my wine bottle pendant light! (click the link to see how I made the light below)
While you are visiting the main website, be sure to "FB Like" Frugal Interior Design!  

Can you envision it?  I think that would look neat.  

I guess I need to take another trip to the junkyard soon!


  1. Thanks one again your "Auto Spring" book holder is amazing all your ideas make a nice statement..I would have never thougt something like an old spring could become a decorative + functional piece of decor. Frugal you've done it once again..;)

  2. I stumbled upon your wonderful blog; absolutely love, love, love it! My husband finds me neat old things like this and I'd rather get "rusty junk" than roses any day (he knows my heart). Anywho; got you on my side-bar; I hope everybody sees your talent with my help! Awesome ideas!

    1. Thank you for the kind words! I was equally impressed with your blog and design direction and am now a follower! Have fun with all of your Autumn projects!

  3. what a great idea for the book storage! i'm surprised they fit, the slots didn't look that big.

    1. This spring was a bit unique in the fact that it had wider slots at one end and narrow slots at the other. I saw various style springs at the yard. Most had the wider slots which would easily accommodate average thickness books. I chose this spring because it was so different, was larger than others I saw, and because it had the best rusty patina!

      Thanks for visiting!


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