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Book lover demonstrates smart use for empty shoe boxes to elevate any limited space: 'This is so genius'

This reuse lets you keep your favorite reads on display without the furniture footprint.

This reuse lets you keep your favorite reads on display without the furniture footprint.

Photo Credit: TikTok

Most of us have been there: We need more space for our ever-expanding book collection but don't have the budget or square footage for another bookshelf.

Thankfully, one TikToker came up with an ingenious book storage solution using an item we probably all have on hand: a shoebox.

The scoop

In her viral video, reading influencer beloved books (@booksbeloved) demonstrates how to transform a simple shoebox into a sturdy minibookshelf in seconds.

@booksbeloved DIY Bookshelf for limited space of low budgets 🤍 made from a shoebox! reduce, reuse, recycle ! #diybookshelf #diyhomedecor #bookshelf #booksbooksbooks #booktok #blackgirlbooktok #ikeafinds #lifehackstiktok ♬ original sound - missy vicky 💞 - ★.𝐕𝐢𝐜𝐤𝐲🥂

She starts by flipping back the shoebox lid as far as it will go. Then, she turns the box on its side and fills the bottom with books.

For even more storage, beloved books cleverly stacks additional books on top of the shoebox, pausing every few seconds to test the stability. The outward-facing books camouflage the shoebox. 

"DIY Bookshelf for limited space [or] low budgets," the caption reads. "Made from a shoebox! Reduce, reuse, recycle !"

How it's helping

This hack is a space-saver. If you're an apartment dweller or just tight on room, repurposing a shoebox as a bookshelf lets you keep your favorite reads on display without the furniture footprint. It's also basically free, assuming you have an unused shoebox.

Even better, it gives a second life to a shoebox that might otherwise get tossed in the trash. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that over 23% of household waste is made up of boxes and paper products. While cardboard is recyclable, reusing a box you already have is even more eco-friendly.

Each time you extend the lifespan of an item, even something as simple as a shoebox, you help reduce the waste clogging up landfills and generating planet-warming methane. It may seem small, but if we all adopted clever reuse hacks such as this one, we could make a real dent in the 292.4 million tons of waste the United States produces annually.

You can also recycle and repurpose unwanted clothing and shoes, including by sending them to organizations such as For Days or GotSneakers. You may even get cash back or store credit out of the deal.

What people are saying

TikTokers are loving this innovative bookshelf alternative.

"Best example of repurposing with a flair! Well done!!!!" one commenter raved.

"This is so genius omg," another agreed.

"We love a green queen," a third declared.

It just goes to show that creativity and sustainability often go hand in hand.

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