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Friday, July 29, 2011

Vintage Library Gear: It's Hip to be Square

Guest post by Ellen Willett

Photo from LittleLadyCompany
It's a bit of an understatement to say that vintage is popular right now. From roller skates with keys to old-timey mustache styles to rockabilly bands, things that can be retrieved from a bygone age and enjoyed again are hot commodities.

Remember physical library cards and date stamps with ink pads? As libraries went digital, the cards were shoved in drawers and on shelves as antiquated analog systems. Now, they're making a comeback as a wedding save-the date and party invitation trend.

GalleyCat found multiple sources on Etsy when they wrote a brief piece on the trend. Hugely popular wedding blog Offbeat Bride posted the story of one couple who made their own, with the clever twist of including the crossed-off wedding dates of their previous marriages to show that they'd been "checked out before".

Libraries themselves are an increasingly popular wedding location for couples who embrace and want to celebrate their inner geeks and nerds. The classic architectural styles of many older libraries doesn't hurt, either.

The renewed cool factor is good news for libraries, but while the extinct tools of libraries are being re-purposed with great fondness and nostalgia, those looking for a vintage experience at the library itself may be disappointed to find that the library has not remained a dusty old relic. Despite recent budget cuts, libraries have embraced the digital age and have remained a vibrant community resource, with offerings as creative as the Heirloom Seed Library we've mentioned. Check out a fantastic blog by our friends Erik Boekesteijn and Jaap van de Geer with interviews from innovative librarians around the world doing some amazing things.

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