I find connections among books, art, music, libraries, travel, crafts and food.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Your Community. Your Library. Your Story

     Rochester (MN) Public Library opened up a Makerspace last month. A Makerspace is new trend nation- (probably world-) wide that provides a public space combined with tools, equipment and education where a community can learn to make things. Makerspace.com describes it well and provides a playbook for opening your own.
     Recently, libraries have been opening Makerspaces in varying levels of sophistication from a physical space (think Harry Potter's room under the stairs) to a room full of machinery, computers and a 3D printer (think Professor Snape's Potions classroom). No matter the level of sophistication, library Makerspaces all have an element of teaching and community involvement.  RPL's version leans more toward the under-the-stairs version (being only a physical space), although it is bright and sunny and is mostly windows, one wall facing the busy skyway so people can see what we're playing with and encourage them to join us. 
   The library wanted to make a big splash of our new space by having a series of projects. I wrote a proposal to include crafts which are library-focused, using personal skills of mine: papermaking, screen printing and book binding, one craft per week.

Here you can see two of the work stations.

We branded the project (Your Community Your Library Your Story) and the Makerspace (Dream it, Make it) (see branding on card). Our library has started using Save the Date cards for events. Here is what we used to help advertise
     Our goal was to make 100 blank books out of recycled materials to catalog and make available for patrons to check out and hand write their own local history. We used discarded fiction books from our library, sawed off the spines, pulped the text blocks to make new paper and used the discarded covers as new ones.
  So, here they are - ready to check out!!!
I can't wait to read them.

No comments:

Post a Comment