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Sharing a Love of Reading > Little Free Libraries

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message 1: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
We started with one little free library in July and quickly realized that we needed more space. My dad built both libraries and we share books with our neighbourhood. I think all neighbourhoods need LFLs and would encourage anyone who is interested to consider building or contributing to a LFL

For more information: http://ayearofbooksblog.com/little-fr...


message 2: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments I think this is such a cool idea!!! I wish I could find someone who could build me one. Do you fill it with new books or used? Do they get returned? I wonder if it ends up costing a lot of money to keep it filled?


message 3: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
It has been a fun initiative and my youngest son has taken over the smaller library for kid books. I got to speak at one of our local schools and they are building 2 LFLs - one for their school and one to donate to another group.

I fill it with used books and do a lot of thrift store shopping for this to keep costs low (it is actually amazing what great books you can find in great condition at thrift stores). Some get returned, some do not. I tend to get quite a few donations which is great so I can do rotation of books that don't seem to move.

I am working with my children's school with the hope of having a LFL there also. it would be nice to have more in a walkable distance.

I have seen a lot of unique libraries on the LFL FB page - some made out of old newspaper boxes, some built into trees, ones that look like the houses on the property and even one that was a red telephone booth (which was very cool)!

The LFL site marks the libraries on a map so you can find them all over the place. http://littlefreelibrary.org/ourmap/


message 4: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
Anyone else steward? borrow from? or wish to have a LFL?

We have seen a few more LFLs "planted" in Brantford which has been fun! The school where I presented has finished their build and have opened for business - now if only I can convince my children's principal to have a LFL...


message 5: by Louise (last edited May 22, 2016 08:05AM) (new)

Louise | 1290 comments I am amazed that the libraries can be made waterproof. I'll have to see if I can convince someone to make one for me. I really would love to set on up. My company is in an industrial park close to a bus stop and we have a mail box out in the front so it would be a good place to put a LFL right next to the mailbox and many people walk by in the morning, after work and at lunch time. My project for this summer :-). Did you dad have any building plans?


message 6: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
Here are the plans that he modified: https://littlefreelibrary.org/wp-cont...

He added caulking and shingles to make it more weather proof and will likely do some maintenance before next winter. i have had no water damage and save the little packets from shoe boxes to keep out the dampness.

In Kitchener/Waterloo, this community hosts community builds which are very cool - individuals get to buy a $60 kit and build together, taking home to embellish and finish off


message 7: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments Thanks Susan! I have decided to make this my summer project. I want one! Will keep you posted on my progress.


message 8: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
Awesome - am happy to help with sharing our experience! one thing is that we waited to order our sign until we were done building and then had to wait at least 6 weeks for our charter so make sure to do that in advance!


message 9: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments You can start it without a charter can't you? Also Quebec has very strict language laws. Like crazy strict. My sign will have to be in French.


message 10: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
you could do an independent library but the benefit of the charter is that it gets put on the LFL map and becomes part of the LFL movement which initially wanted to build 2509 and now has over 36000. we have 3 of the 9 in our community that are independent and share with neighbourhoods.


message 11: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments Yes I will want to get the charter but I can still set up my library first correct? Then apply for the charter?


message 12: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
For sure!! That is what we ended up doing. :)


message 13: by Megan (new)

Megan  | 488 comments So cool! My Dad went onto pinterest (my dad!!!) and got ideas for a free library and he and my mom are making it right now. They live in a small rural town. Fun!!


message 14: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
That is awesome. I wonder if there is a way to add pictures into the comments? I would be interested in seeing there lfl!!


message 15: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments That is very cool!


message 16: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments I found someone who will build me a little free library! I am psyched. Now I need to go shopping for books, and enter every free giveaway contest on Goodreads, hahaha.


message 17: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
Good news!! I have found a lot at garage sales and thrift stores but admit that I am a bit picky about what I put in. I put less in now as we have had many generous donations!


message 18: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments I'm going to have to make mine 75% French so I will definitely go check out some local used book stores. My library had a book sale last week. I should have gone.

About how many books can you fit in yours and what is your breakdown? Kids books? novels? non-fiction?


message 19: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments Do you stamp your books with anything?


message 20: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
Yes - i have a custom stamp but I am a bit of a book snob and only stamp the books that I have read or that fit with the books that I really want to promote (i.e. i don't stamp the romances but do leave them in for a bit but if they are not taken after a while donate them to a thrift store). I have been thinking about adding book crossings to the mix but that might be a summer project


message 21: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments What are book crossings?


message 22: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
Here is the website: http://www.bookcrossing.com . i have to learn more about it but it is a way of tracking where books might end up.


message 23: by Louise (last edited May 26, 2016 08:46PM) (new)

Louise | 1290 comments I just made my first score for my LFL. Chapters has 5 Alice Munro books in a collection for $12 (originally priced at $50), for all 5, no shipping, and brand spanking new.


message 24: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
I bought that boxed set for myself too!! That will be a great start for your library!!


message 25: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments I'm so excited about this now. I'm going to hit the local used book store today as I need to get some French books! I have also posted on FB about my upcoming LFL and telling friends I will gladly take any books anyone wants to get rid of and I already have a few people who have books for me! I will probably send for the charter sooner rather than later. I am waiting to hear back from them about the need for my sign to be in French so I don't get in trouble with the language law police here!


message 26: by Megan (new)

Megan  | 488 comments You ladies are both amazing! :)


message 27: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
Thanks Megan - what is amazing is the response to the LFL. It has been so much fun for our family!!


message 28: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments There go my plans for a LFL. They are not allowed in this town :-(


message 29: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
That is terrible!!! I wonder if you can appeal. We are lucky to have some space on our own property near the sidewalk as I imagine the city would not be too keen for us to put our library on the boulevard which is city property.


message 30: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments I was going to put it on our own property, but next to the sidewalk. They didn't even ask where I wanted to put it. Just said no. This is very typical of Quebec. I'm going to call back tomorrow and see if I can find someone I can reason with.


message 31: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments LFL people were already working on a bilingual sign for me :-(


message 32: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
Ridiculous that they can say no when it would be on your own property!! Good luck and maybe reasonableness will prevail.


message 33: by Allison (new)

Allison | 1908 comments Hi! Late to this conversation.

I run a LFL and it's awesome. I just love it.

I also travel around looking for "book boxes" (as the kids call them) all over the place. Today I scored and found a beautiful new one on quite a rural road around home! I always have "trading books" in my car, so changed four of mine for some real scores! Got: The Orenda, The Illegal and two other new, great reads from my TBR! So fun!


message 34: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
That is great Allison - always so nice to find other LFLs on your travels. We have 6 in Brantford now that are registered and at least 3 that are not. It is such a great way to share great books.

I am trying to fill mine with Canadian choices for July but now always finding that borrowers are as keen on these as sometimes they sit...


message 35: by Petra (new)

Petra | 725 comments Great finds, Allison!

Susan, it's a shame that the Canadian books seem to hang around longer. We have great authors.


message 36: by Allison (new)

Allison | 1908 comments I truly, truly believe, and have said for years, that Canadian authors are the world's greatest! I've always felt Indian writers come up in second place, but Canadian authors are, in my opinion, the best there is! :)


message 37: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
@ Petra - I agree and keep hoping that more people will choose them evenually and @Allison - I totally agree about Cdn authors and have tried to read at least 50% canadian content this year.

I need to get a few more maple leaf stickers for the books - the library gave me some but I think I will buy a roll of my own.


message 38: by Louise (last edited Jun 25, 2016 07:08PM) (new)

Louise | 1290 comments Allison wrote: "I truly, truly believe, and have said for years, that Canadian authors are the world's greatest! I've always felt Indian writers come up in second place, but Canadian authors are, in my opinion, th..."

YES YES YES! I've been saying it for years. The rest of the world thinks we only have Atwood and Munroe but we actually have so much more depth than that. And runner-up for me is African lit although that's a whole continent, so again so much depth there as well. I try to keep American lit. to a minimum, and because I've been in a Booker group for years I'm getting tired of British lit as well. I could live off of Canadians only for my reading pleasure.


message 39: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
And this is totally why I am hoping to fill up the library with Canadian content for the month of July!!! :)


message 40: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1290 comments Susan wrote: "And this is totally why I am hoping to fill up the library with Canadian content for the month of July!!! :)"

You put so much thought into you LFL. It's wonderful; I hope people appreciate it.


message 41: by CluckingBell (new)

CluckingBell | 16 comments Louise wrote: "I was going to put it on our own property, but next to the sidewalk. They didn't even ask where I wanted to put it. Just said no. This is very typical of Quebec. I'm going to call back tomorrow and..."

Have you talked to anyone in your area who has an LFL? Maybe they know who to talk to to get things done.


message 42: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
@Louise - thanks! The library is a win-win. Fun for us and the books turn over a fair bit. I am trying to spread the love for CanLit but do find that some of those books sit. I am on vacation for the week so might try adding some comments on sticky notes to encourage giving them a try as there are some fantastic ones to borrow!


message 43: by Natasha (new)

Natasha Penney | 562 comments @Susan Did you add the Canada flag stickers to the books as you indicated in your CBC interview? I wondered if that made a difference.


message 44: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
I did - I love the look of the stickers and think I will have to orders some of my own. It was so nice of the library to share their stock with me. I had intended have an all Canadian overhaul for tomorrow but it has been a busy week so I will have to work on it.


message 45: by Allison (new)

Allison | 1908 comments My LFL is completely stocked with Canadiana for the weekend!


message 46: by Natasha (new)

Natasha Penney | 562 comments Wonderful @Allison!


message 47: by ❀ Susan (last edited Jun 30, 2016 07:35PM) (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
@Allison - wtg -i have one full shelf Canadian so far in the adult library and a mix in the children's library. I will have to dig through my overflow tomorrow.

Am loving this LFL thread! Had suggested this in the other group and was told an emphatic "we will not be having that here".


message 48: by Natasha (new)

Natasha Penney | 562 comments @Susan What other group? *winking*


message 49: by CluckingBell (new)

CluckingBell | 16 comments FYI: This spring one of the interior design classes at my alma mater had a group assignment to build and donate a freestanding Little Free Library—described as "a community up-cycled found materials detail and build project"—and they had an exhibit at the end of the semester. I took some photos of the libraries and the interpretive posters about each project, which are legible if you zoom in enough.


message 50: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3664 comments Mod
@CluckingBell - what a terrific project and great LFLs. My dad used a lot of materials that he had from other projects when he built mine too. I have joined a LFL group on FB and am amazed at the amazing creativity that some have used when building.


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