Posted in Typeface, Visual Language




Nice little piece of industrial deign by Jack Curry. Great for all designers young and old with many books.

Using some off-the-shelf black bookends as a reference, I began figuring out how each letter would begin to look if used in the given framework. Letterforms with open counters – such as A, H, K, et al – lent themselves easily to this system; however, characters with closed bottoms – such as B, C, D, E, et al – proved to be trickier to manage. After several different directions – including a foray into making the entire set proportional as opposed to monospaced (a development which did not last long) – I came to the conclusion that the best solution would be to simply have the foundation of these forms contain both sides of the base, which would swing out in opposite directions; not unlike a gymnast doing forward splits. Using this dual-system of base formation, the letterforms could remain the same width, and the weight-bearing ability of the bookend would not be compromised.

A test batch of letters (spelling out “READ”) were then cut from 16 gauge stainless steel and powder-coated in classic library orange – just like dad used to have.

I’m happy to report that my books have ceased falling over unexpectedly.

You can see the whole thing here



looks very much like our Billy book ends in IKEA. Stand is shaped as a letter B.

I like it that your one spells ‘READ’


Fantastic design. I can see myself having different library sections spelled out this way – ‘art’, ‘fiction’, though a ‘philosophy’ section might be a bit of a stretch…
I really like the bookshelves as well, where do they come from?

Jo Trew

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