November 22nd, 2011

Crafting the Perfect Holiday

Christmas Display 2011_1A few days ago I started working on the decorations we will use for our holiday book display at the Elkton Central Library this year.  I am decoupaging old book pages on to a Styrofoam tree.  Will it be a success? I’m not sure at this point.  For me the joy of creating is not really being sure what you will end up with and the pleasure I receive when it turns out, hopefully, better than expected.  The other nice thing about it is that I’m recycling old books and flower pots!

Everyone is looking for ways to save money during the holidays.  One of the ways I save (and recycle) is by making my own gifts for relatives and friends out of vintage paper and fabric.  They appreciate the thought, love and effort put into the gifts, and I enjoy making them.  It, however, is not a pretty sight at my house during the “creative process.”  When an idea strikes me, I rip through the boxes and boxes of vintage paper and fabric I collect until just the right pieces come together.

The library has a wide assortment of craft books from Scherenschnitte (Papercutting) to rug hooking and many dedicated just to holiday crafts. Two of my particular favorites are Sara Toliver’s Vintage Christmas Crafts and Terry Taylor’s Altered Art.  I love the vintage quality of these two books and have made shadow boxes as gifts using ideas from both of them.  Happily, these shadow boxes have become treasured gifts, prized by the recipients.

vintage xmas gifts bookHere is a list of some other craft books available at the library that might inspire you to “craft” the perfect holiday this year.  In December all the Cecil County Public Libraries will host holiday craft programs for all ages and open houses with music and food.  We invite you to join us in celebrating the holidays.  And now is the time to check out those craft books!

What will you be crafting for the holidays?


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October 19th, 2011

Let Us Find Your Next Favorite Book

Pile of BooksThe hallmark of today’s nerd tends to be obsession. These obsessions are wide ranging, from Star Wars to Jane Austen, manga to Mythbusters, Legos to zombies, Harry Potter to Angry Bir….well, you get it. I like to consider myself a well-rounded nerd, but my biggest obsession is definitely books. I get ridiculously happy when the new books come in at the library because a new book holds such promise, such potential. It might be the book that you tell all your friends about. The one that you reread every year. The one that makes you snort loudly with laughter while waiting for an oil change. (Yes, I’ve done that.)

But even better than a new book is an old book that somehow slipped past your radar – an author you’ve never read before, a book you never got around too, or a title that was wildly popular a few years ago.

For a book nerd like me, one of the best jobs at the library is doing a Book Mate. Book Mate is a matchmaking service for readers (between readers and books, not readers and other readers—we leave that up to you!).  Answer a few questions about what you like to read and what you don’t and we’ll give you a list of books we think you might enjoy. We’ll wander the stacks looking for that book that just might be your new favorite, the one you tell all your friends about. Need CD books or eBooks?  Not a problem.  Large Print or Teen books? We can do that too. Heck, we’ll even throw in a DVD if you want. No matter what you read or why you read it, we’ll find something for you.  During the month of October, a few lucky readers who fill out a Book Mate will win free copies of local author Ed Okonowicz’s spookiest books. Fill out a Book Mate form, online here or pick up a paper copy at your local library. We’re book nerds here at the library, so let us put our obsession to work for you.

What’s your nerd obsession?


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