“We think it is important that everyone has access to books and not everyone in our community has easy access to books,” say Olivia and Sophia Thornburg. For their Girl Scout Silver Award, they wanted to do something that would not only increase book access, but bring their community together. So they decided to build a Little Free Library book-sharing box…. but the design they chose wasn’t exactly ordinary.

Olivia and Sophia chose to build a TARDIS Little Free Library tall enough to stand in! Their library is #107622 in La Grande, Oregon. Find it on the Little Free Library world map! We asked them to share more about their library-building experience in this steward spotlight blog post.

How did you pick the TARDIS design? Can you share the blueprints and your building tips?

The blueprints for the TARDIS design came from the website Woodworking for Mere Mortals. The author claimed that it took no special tools but this was not correct. No one in our family has any woodworking skills so this was a challenge and learning experience for us all. We are huge Dr. Who fans and Sophia thought it would be great fun to have a full-sized TARDIS in our front yard.

There is also an online group called TARDIS builders that was full of information. You will need specialized tools such as a nail gun, table saw, and miter saw. We enjoyed learning to use all of these tools. We also were able to earn our woodworking badge as part of the project!

What has surprised you the most about being Little Free Library stewards?

No big surprises, but we love seeing all of the new people who are driving and walking by. It is also great to go out and see new books in there; it’s so much fun! Olivia has been surprised to find that people have figured out our system for organizing books even though the shelves are not labeled. Childrens books are on the bottom; young adult books are in the middle; adult books are above that; and non-fiction books are on top.

Do you have any tips you’d like to share with others interested in building a Little Free Library?

The trickiest part was getting the roof waterproofed and leak-free. We used a product called Liquid Rubber to seal it. There was a TARDIS library in Detroit that gave us the idea originally. We emailed them for ideas on how to make the roof and they had used metal. That was out of our abilities so we took a while to find the perfect solution.

Do you know someone looking for Girl Scout Silver Award ideas? Learning how to build a little free library (or several) could make a great project!

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