For people who like to read constantly, a book stand is a welcome addition. It can be set up at the dining room table so a person can read and use a fork at the same time. Better still, if it can be collapsed, it is easily portable to any room in the home. A folding book stand isn't too challenging a project for the beginning woodworker. Make the stand out of a good quality wood and stain it when finished for something both beautiful and useful.
Cut wood into three pieces. You will need one long piece at 19 or 20 inches, one piece 3-inches long and one piece 7-inches long. The wood should be wide enough to hold an open book.
Position the hinges on the long side of the 3-inch piece of wood, and at the edge of the piece. Mark the outline of the hinge and chisel out the wood so the hinges lie flat and screw them into place. Do the same with the hinges on the 7-inch piece of wood.
Measure up from the bottom of the largest piece of wood 6 inches on the front side -- where the book will lie -- and mark the spot. Position the 3-inch piece of wood so the top edge of the wood is on this line and so the hinges on the 3-inch piece butt up against the large piece of wood. The hinges must fold upward, so when unfolded this piece of wood can hold up a book. Mark the outline of the hinges. Chisel out the wood so the hinges will lie flat and screw the 3-inch piece to the front of the wood. This piece should fold open to hold the book, and fold up flat against the largest piece of wood when not in use.
Measure up from the bottom on the back side of the largest piece of wood 8 inches and mark the spot. Position the 7-inch piece of wood on the backside of the large piece so the hinges butt up against the large piece of wood. The hinges for this piece should fold downward, so when unfolded it can prop up the rest of the wood and the book. Outline the hinges onto the back side. Chisel out the area where the hinges will affix to the large piece of wood and screw the hinges in. This piece will serve as a prop for the stand when in use, and will fold flat when being stored.
Finish the piece by sanding with medium-grit sandpaper. Use a tack cloth to remove all traces of dust prior to staining or painting. If you will be staining the piece, you can apply it with either a cloth or a brush. Let the stand dry for one day prior to using.