Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Simple Things - Bookmarks

Our local library currently has a display that has me lingering in the foyer every time I go in there, feeling rather sorry for the exhibits; lost bookmarks.

The artist photocopied the library's collection of lonely and abandoned bookmarks, and although she began by displaying them randomly, they fell naturally into groups (maybe subconsciously influenced by the Dewey Decimal Cataloguing system?); foliage, religious, embroidered etc.



I'm not a great bookmark collector, but I've also never been a corner-of-the-page-folder-overer either. I'm happy to use an envelope or postcard or whatever's to hand. 

Although I thought I wasn't too fussed about bookmarks, the carelessness of North Wiltshire's readers is quite astonishing. There are some beautiful bookmarks here. Protective angels, prayers, souvenirs from holidays, wildlife, embroidery and cross stitch that represent considerable hours of hand crafting, special grandma poems and works of art - all are represented. And they're just the ones that can be shared. The more 'personal' bookmarks weren't copied. All of these lost souls waiting to be reunited with their owners.




Coincidentally I noticed the exhibition in the same week that I'd set a themed 'design a bookmark' activity at work. It's always surprisingly popular and the kids produce some amazing designs.

The exhibition and the homework made me look at bookmarks with new eyes; with the growing popularity of e-readers, bookmark design may be a dying art. I haven't got a Kindle  so I wouldn't know if e-bookmarks exist but surely they can't be quite the same? Best to appreciate the humble card or fabric bookmark while we still can.

I rushed home from the library to check I could find my one and only all-time favourite bookmark, produced by Son when he was at playgroup. Found it! Phew.




'My mum is ssp' - special?

How about you? Bookmark owner or corner-folder-overer? Do you have a bookmark collection or a special bookmark? Have you ever lost one? Or have you abandoned books and bookmarks completely for the e-version?

14 comments:

  1. In books I own, I use postcards from friends & family as bookmarks- they bring back memories whenever I reread the books. In library books I tend to use random bits of paper/bus tickets etc. I HATE folded corners! My late mother collected bookmarks - I have 3 albums full - and no idea what to do with them. Any suggestions?

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    1. I really don't like folded corners either! Hmmm, 3 albums of bookmarks...Use some of them? Sell them in aid of a charity connected with your Mum? A lovely gift for your daughters...? Photocopy them and display them!!!?

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  2. What a lovely display of bookmarks! I don't fold corners over, but I have never bought a bookmark. I have been given them as gifts in the past or have picked them up for free in the library/ book shops. If I can't find one I improvise with whatever I can find. I have recently gone over to e-books, but still read paper ones as well that are borrowed from friends/ family or the library...

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    1. I've had some nice free ones too but like you, I'm good at improvising!

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  3. Do you know what strikes me as sad with many of those bookmarks? I frequently give a bookmark along with a book as a gift. Many of these were gifts from someone who cared. And my own kids have made bookmarks for me over the years, as gifts. Sad to have been lost so carelessly. But an interesting exhibit, I'm sure.

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    1. Yes, I expect many of them were gifts...no-one buys themself a 'special grandma' bookmark surely?! Hopefully the display will jog the owners' memories and bookmarks will be reclaimed!

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  4. I work in the neighborhood library and find bookmarks all of the time. We collect them for a little while and then put them in a give-away spot. Maybe I'll start collecting them for a display. An excellent idea.

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    1. Ooh that's a bit disturbing too - the idea of taking someone else's special bookmark...but I suppose it's better for a bookmark to be in use than languishing in the lost bookmark box!

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  5. Hi
    I've just discovered your blog from Angela at Tracing Rainbows.
    Book marks - My favorite book mark i use was from a craft fare. Its a coloured bookworm with a long ribbon tail and a beed on the end. Whilst reading my book I can be found wrapping and unwrapping the tail around my fingers. My daughter who is 13 collects book marks and must have about 50 to 60 and kept in a shoe box. She has three bookmarks on the go at the moment and will also swap them around.
    Carolx

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    1. Welcome Carol! I like the sound of your tactile bookworm. And that's an impressive bookmark collection! Almost on a par with Angela's mother's albums...(see Angela's comment above!)

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  6. I need two bookmarks if I'm reading a book with endnotes. The other day I came across a bookmark from a library where I worked over 50 years ago.

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    1. I've never used two at a time but that's a good idea! Nice to know your library bookmark wasn't lost forever!

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  7. The saddest part of the Kindle really is the lack of bookmarks, but I only used pieces of ribbon or string mostly, never a valuable and 'to keep' bookmark. You can 'do' a bookmark in an ebook, but really a bookmark is unnecessary since the ebook always opens at the last page read. I have bookmarked and highlighted passages in my best and favourite books but, really, I never look at the bits so the feature lies alone and unused, except in the books I read for bookclub. Then it's useful to find all the parts I wanted to look at again on one page.

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