Start a Little Free Library

If you want to start a Little Free Library book exchange, you’re in the right place. We’re excited to have you join the network—now more than 150,000 Little Free Libraries strong! Watch the 30-second video to see how Little Free Libraries work and learn how you can start a little library, too.

We also recommend using the Little Free Library mobile app or web map to find a Little Free Library near you. Stop by and chat with the volunteer steward of that library and ask for their advice as you get started.

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Get Started

1. Identify a Location & Steward

First decide where you can legally and safely install the library. The location should also have a lot of foot traffic and be highly visible to anyone nearby. Then identify at least one person to be the steward (steward = caretaker). This person promotes the library and makes sure it is clean and inviting.

2. Get a Library

You can build your own Little Free Library following any design you like; find someone locally to build one for you; or purchase a library through Little Free Library’s online store. Libraries purchased through our online store are automatically registered and come with a charter sign included.

3. Register Your Library

Register by purchasing an official charter sign. If you buy a Little Free Library from our online store, it will automatically come registered with a charter sign included. If you build your own book-sharing box, register it by purchasing a charter sign. After you register, you gain access to a network of benefits just for stewards, such as the option to set up your steward account and list your library on the Little Free Library mobile app and web map.

4. Set Up Your Steward Account

After you purchase your Little Free Library or charter sign, you will receive an email with a link to set up your steward account. Once you have set up your steward account, you have the option to add your library’s location to the world map and manage all of its details in real time. Your library will not appear on the map unless you add it. To map your library, log in to your steward account through the Little Free Library app or steward web portal, fill in your library’s information, and set its Map Status to Mapped.

5. Build Community Support

Get your community involved! Tell your friends, family, and neighbors in person. Use social media to engage your community. Hold a Grand Opening Ceremony and invite your neighbors to kick off the library in style with a ribbon cutting, snacks, and books freely exchanged! Contact the local paper, radio, and TV stations. Send out a press release. The more people who know about your library and support it, the better.

How to…

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