Announcement I love to preserve obsolete library card catalog cards by turning them into pieces of art. Also check out my agate geode bookends section.
I love to preserve obsolete library card catalog cards by turning them into pieces of art. Also check out my agate geode bookends section.
Matthew Reid on May 21, 2016
These are really fun pieces of art. I love them. I gave one of them to a librarian who is retiring and she loved it. Awesome seller too.
Turning library cards into art
When I was visiting a local library a few years ago, I noticed obsolete library card catalog cards being used as scratch paper, then tossed into garbage or recycling bins. Somehow it felt wrong to me that these little pieces of history were being tossed away. (As a little girl, I lived one block from a library and spent many a summer day there. I'm quite sure that I read every horse book on the shelves.)
I asked the librarians if I could have some of the cards, and they graciously let me pick some out from a single cardboard box they had in a back room. That was all they had left out of the thousands upon thousands of cards that used to be in the library.
I decided to start painting imagery on the cards inspired by the titles, subjects or authors listed on each card. When I posted some of the painted cards in my Etsy shop, sales took off. In today's fast-paced, digital world, I think people have a real sense of nostalgia for library card catalogs and library cards. Since then, I've shipped library card art to almost every state in America, as well as Canada, Europe and Australia.
I start each library card painting by sifting through my collection — which has now grown to a few thousand cards — and choosing one that inspires me that day. I then research imagery and select something that fits the card. I'm always careful not to paint over important words on the card, such as titles or author names. Sometimes I feel like painting a character on a card for a classic children's book, and sometimes I want to try something new and completely fresh.
Libraries, the way we read books and the world will continue to change, but a good book will always be priceless. My library card art is my way of showing how much I will always love books.
Owner, Maker, Designer, Library Card Hunter
Daughter Of Shop Owner, Shipping Helper, Inventory Manager
My little daughter Sydney has so much entrepreneurial spirit and loves to help out with my Etsy shop.
Accepted payment methods
- Accepts Etsy gift cards