New Shelf Dividers

It was time for an upgrade. Our library has been using cardboard boxes as shelf dividers for a while now. As our collection grows, the shelves get tighter and the boxes were taking up valuable real estate. They were also looking a little tired, not to mention the empty boxes made the perfect hiding space for students to stash books, rubbish or Easter eggs (I kid you not, the whole thing was in there all crumbled up. What a waste of chocolate!!).

So, we invested in some new acrylic shelf dividers. We purchased them from Syba Signs. While Syba sell the vinyl to stick on the dividers in a range of colours and labels, we wanted to completely control the font and colours, and customise them to our collections. Fortunately, we have a Cricut machine in the library, which can cut vinyl.

We matched the colour of the vinyl to our new spine labels and used the same font. We purchased our vinyl from Vinyl loft, who have a great range of colours and were fantastic to deal with.

Using the Cricut Design Space software, I created the layout of the dividers. We went through a range of layouts, tweaking until we were totally happy with them.

Then I just had to cut, weed, transfer and smooth down the vinyl. Some tips I learnt in the process

– invest in good transfer paper. Contact is a little too sticky and leaves a residue, transfer paper that isn’t strong enough wastes so much time, especially when you are working with little letter bits like the inside of an a or e.

– tweezers are a must.

– a book covering tool (squeegee) is awesome for really smoothing down the vinyl and getting rid of small bubbles

– mark up the dividers first with a fine-tip whiteboard pen. Makes lining up the vinyl so much easier and quicker.

And here is the final product. Initial feedback has been good. Much easier to find sections and librarians say it is so much easier to reshelve.

We also made some cool graphics with the weeded vinyl. We’ll frame and hang these when we have a full set from each of the collections. This is our Fiction one.