I’m very happy with the choices I made for labels!
For our fiction books, I purchased Demco Color-Tinted Glossy Label Protectors to go over the spine labels. I love this look, because when I look at a fiction section, all of the books are labeled with the same color, so it’s very easy to see a book that’s in the wrong section.
Doesn’t that look nice?!
These are samples of books from my eight fiction genres:
So once I had my genres decided and my stickers ready to go, I started at the beginning. I went book by book through my fiction section and evaluated. When I started this process, I was brand new to the library. And it needed some serious weeding. I spent many weeks weeding and tagging my way through the fiction section. It was a long and tedious process, but I’m so glad I did it (and did it myself). Whenever I had a little bit of spare time, I grabbed my box of tinted labels and went to work. I would look at the subjects on the copyright pages, read summaries, refer to the catalog, or talk to students who had read the book to decide on their genres. Instead of focusing more on the technicalities of the particular genres, I tried to think more in terms of, “What type of reader would be most likely to enjoy this book?” By working my way through the fiction section, weeding and genre tagging, I got to know my collection very well!
I approached nonfiction a little differently. First I weeded…SERIOUS weeding. That shrunk the size of my collection significantly. Then I sorted and tagged nonfiction. Obviously, sorting from Dewey into categories wasn’t that difficult. But it did make me SO HAPPY to put the pets and other animals in a section together. It made me even happier to move those darn military vehicles in with the war books. And I had a plan for arranging fiction and nonfiction sections near each other…which wasn’t happening with Dewey. But more on that later!
I created my own labels for the nonfiction categories. I had tons and tons of these spine label sheets, I used graphics from OpenClipArt.org, and I put the designs together in Comic Life. All of the labels that I’ve created can be found here on my Flickr account, free for you to use if you’d like! Here’s how they look on the books:
This is where I admit that I’m a label/tape snob. Back at my first library, I made new spine labels for lots of books and covered them with whatever label protectors I had lying around. MISTAKE! They all fell off. So I got in touch with Demco and they sent me samples of all of their label protectors. Now, I exclusively use Demco’s Ultra-Agressive Glossy Label Protectors. And those go over the top of EVERYTHING. And it stays put!
It would be much easier to go through the labeling process over the summer, with all of the books in the library. Of course, that’s not what I did! It took quite a while to work through this process as I continued to tag books as they were returned. But eventually, they were all properly labeled and ready for the next step…
Next up is “Making the Move!”