Things I’ve Made as a Children’s Library Staffer

You’ll already know this if you saw my Meet the Artist drawing that I posted on Instagram last week, but in addition to my art shenanigans, I work as a children’s library staffer (fun fact: there’s some debate over the qualifications one needs to earn the title “librarian”). It’s absolutely the perfect “day job” for me; I get to make relationships with amazing kids, read the latest and greatest books, and organize stuff to my heart’s content. I also get a constant diet of picture book illustrations, which has been a huge influence on my own artwork.

Another fun element of working in a library is that I get to be creative in some unexpected ways; we’re always learning new things with our kids, and sometimes library events call for a crazy craft project. Today I thought I’d share some of my favorite improvised creations from the supply closet.

This spider pal was actually a piñata that I made for a teen program themed around the Netflix show Wednesday. He’s made out of cardboard, cardstock, crepe paper streamers, and soooo much hot glue. Of course, the kids had fun beating him to pieces, because art is temporary. Rest in pieces, piñata spider.

For this past Christmas, I made an origami tree topper out of book pages (the book was already damaged, don’t worry!). We also did a book page garland, and printed out tiny book covers based on the staff’s favorite reads.

This treasure chest was for our our ocean-themed Summer Reading Program. Kids could pick a prize out of the treasure chest every time they completed a reading tracker. Essentially a dressed-up cardboard box, but we had fun with it!

My Halloween costume last year, because I love Eric Carle and I have a reputation for loving food. Guess who!

This one was so tricky, but also one of my favorites. During the ocean-themed Summer Reading Program, we symbolically “adopted” a Loggerhead Sea Turtle named Pop-Tart and tracked her location through the ocean. So many kids asked me why Pop-Tart wasn’t at the library if we had adopted her (because kids are the best), so I made a life-sized Pop-Tart out of construction paper and mounted her to the wall. The kids took photos with her and signed their names on her shell.

And last but not least, one of several chalk lettering projects!

I love any excuse to raid the craft supply closet, so I’m sure I’ll have more wacky projects to share soon. 🙂

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