Interested in creating a Library of Things?
WebJunction will offer a free webinar on October 19, 2022, at 2:00 PM CDT called “Library of Things: The what, why, and how of lending objects.” The webinar will cover selecting items, budgeting, cataloging, displaying, maintaining, and marketing a library of things, and will share strategies for making the right decisions to meet your community’s needs.
One of the presenters for this webinar, Lindsay Delaney, wrote a helpful article about her experience starting a library of things. In it she discussed her library’s priorities for collection development: items people might want to test out, that they would use infrequently and for a short time, and items that people wouldn’t need on a particular day. Using those guidelines can be a good place to start when thinking about items to add to your collection. What Things would your community find useful?
Northern Waters libraries already offer an impressive collection of nontraditional items to borrow:
- Equipment items in the Northern Waters Library Network catalog include wifi hotspots, Chromebooks, laptops, tablets, eReaders, ukeleles, telescopes, sewing machines, GoPro cameras, quilting and other crafting equipment, and more
- Items cataloged as “Hodge-Podge” include museum passes, cake pans, canning equipment, craft stamps, and more
If you’re starting a Library of Things at your library, you’ll need help cataloging all of those Things so they can appear in our network catalog and be checked out to your patrons. Use the Bib Record Request – Library of Things form developed by NWLS staff to help you collect and submit all of the information needed to create a quality catalog record. You’ll need basic information about your thing, its measurements, a vendor or Amazon link to the thing if possible, and a photograph/image.