How Every Book Lover Can Own Their Own Bookstore

alex atkins bookshelf booksAt one time or another, every book lover has thought about owning their own bookstore. What a dream job it would be — imagine opening up the bookstore’s front door each day and being greeted with that wonderful smell of books and walking through the neatly arranged bookshelves, their ornate covers beckoning “read me!” And each day you meet kindred souls, bibliophiles and ardent readers, so that you can share your passion for reading and collecting books. How fulfilling it would be to recommend books that will be meaningful and be treasured by the customers who visit your quaint bookstore.

I know what you are thinking. How can a every book lover own his or her own bookstore. Isn’t it really expensive to open a bookstore? Interestingly, bookstores have lower starting costs than other businesses. The biggest expense, as you can imagine, are rent and initial inventory. Consider that the average bookstore in the United States is 3,000 square feet; micro-bookstores and pop-up bookstores, on the other hand, use very little space: from 100 to 500 square feet. In general, opening a small bookstore (assuming the 3,000-square-feet size) will cost between $60,000 to $112,000. Opening a large bookstore will cost more than $400,00 to open. After rent and inventory, the largest expenses are furniture (sales counter and bookshelves), an inventory management system, and marketing expenses (website, signage, advertising, etc.). In an article for Forbes titled “How to Open an Independent Bookstore,” Rachel Bussel interviewed several people who had opened bookstores in 2018. One bookstore owner revealed that it took about ten months of work (writing a business plan, obtaining loan, searching retail locations, ordering books, etc.) to open up a bookstore.atkins-bookshelf-bookstoreBut what if I told you that for less than $50 you can own your bookstore? That’s right — you read that correctly: for under $50. Let me introduce you to an innovative company called Rolife. Rolife is a sub-brand of Robotime Technology (Suzhou) Co,. Ltd, based in Beijing, China, which is a toy company that designs and manufactures do-it-yourself wooden puzzles and educational toys for kids and adults. One of their products is the Miniature Bookstore that retails for about $40. The wooden model is built to 1:24 scale; when completed it will be about 7 x 8 x 9 inches. Unlike a real brick-and-mortar bookstore that will take almost a year to get off the ground, this miniature bookstore will take you about 15 hours to build. The bookstore includes bookshelves, shelf ladder, table, wingback reading chair, cabinets, wall decorations, signs — and of course, lots of books. The best part of this kit is that you can copy the kit’s photo or customize any of the elements to align with your dream bookstore. The miniature bookstore even features a working ceiling lamp which uses battery-powered LED lights. The kit materials include wood parts, cloth, printed paper, and metal fittings. In order to build the kit, you will definitely need some tools. Fortunately, the helpful folks at Rolife include tweezers and a paintbrush; however you will have to supply the glue and AAA batteries.

The miniature bookstore can be purchased on Amazon here.

Rolife also makes a smaller and simpler bookstore, called the Book Nook – Free Time Bookshop, seen here.

other kits that booklover’s would appreciate like the Book Nook – Sunshine Town, seen here.

ENJOY THE BOOK. If you love reading Atkins Bookshelf, you will love reading the book — Serendipitous Discoveries from the Bookshelf. The beautifully-designed book (416 pages) is a celebration of literature, books, fascinating English words and phrases, inspiring quotations, literary trivia, and valuable life lessons. It’s the perfect gift for book lovers and word lovers.

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