A Plug for the Public Library

As many of you know, I am a librarian by day, so it should come as no surprise that I’d have a plug for the library at some point.  This is a reminder that, as a fiber artist, you’ve got a world of resources at your fingertips.

Yes, you’ve probably got access to Youtube and Google.  And these resources have their pluses and minuses, just like all resources.  Use them and use them well!  But there’s some points to remember, especially when dealing with some of the more esoteric areas of fiber arts.

  1.  Not everything is on the internet  –  According to Mark Y. Herring, only about 8% of published journals are available online and an even slimmer percentage of books.
  2.  Quality control – This almost goes without saying, but anyone can publish anything they want online.  While there is a ton of great information about fiber arts out there, there is also misinformation which can be difficult to sort through.
  3. The Internet: A Mile Wide, an Inch (or Less) Deep – This is of course a generality, but you’ll find that a majority of information available online is less than 15 years old.  Also, while it is easy to find basic resources, once you start to delve deeper into your art, you’ll find there isn’t always a lot of support out there.

Your local library likely has some interesting resources if you’re willing to check them out.  And if they don’t have it, they probably have access to it.  Most libraries participate in an interlibrary loan program where libraries share materials across the world.  Sometimes there is a fee associated with it and sometimes it is a free service.  I’ve gotten copies of articles and borrowed popular and out of print materials regularly.  It has saved me a ton of money on purchasing books and also led me to purchase some of the books I really liked.

American Libraries Magazine


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