Wednesday, August 12, 2009

GIFSL:* 39: Signage: Major areas

Sometimes you get so used to The Way Things Are, you don't get around to fresh library signage; but it was on our agenda for this year.  This is one of the signs we've made to signpost major library areas.  On a limited budget, they didn't cost lots, were within our scope to make and fit in with the 'look' of the library too.
The canvases came from a two dollar shop (Hot Dollar - a lot cheaper than art supply shop prices) and cost under $15 each (the signs are double sided, two canvases per sign).  The paint is left over from other painting in the library - aqua like the foyer for the reading retreat and nonfiction, blue like the fiction wall in fiction.
The font is the same as the painted walls in the library (we use the same font for all the word walls and library paperwork).
While we could have put just one word on the sign, larger, I wanted to have more than one, to include several ideas and maybe, for some kids, answer/get past the library jargon (eg. fiction/nonfiction).  Our reference is interfiled with nonfiction so the sign reflects this.
I also didn't want wonky fonts, pictures/images that could date etc etc.  Plain, classic, good.
picture books
reference books
reading retreat
These signs, and these word combinations© copyright Ruth Buchanan 2009.  All rights reserved.  Schools/teacher librarians please see the note at the end allowing you to use these. Apologies for the necessity of pointing this out... (Actually, the whole blog is copyright...)
What you need: two canvases for every sign (if you're hanging them as we did - one will do if you're putting them against a wall).  We used long ones 45cm x 90cm.  Painted with leftover house paint from the walls.  We then projected the words onto them with an overhead projector (same technique as the wall words), chalked the outlines (brushes away better than pencil, even if it's thicker) and carefully (you need a steady hand, hurrah for my school assistant with the steady hand and fine paintbrush!) painted the words (using folk art paint colours from our existing palette/collection).  We deliberately have some words lighter than others.  Because we wanted to.  Both sides of each sign are painted with the same words in the same colours.
The signs were screwed together, with white screwhead covers to hide the screws,  and we used cuphooks and lengths of black chain (Bunnings hardware was the source for all these items) to hang them (we liked black chain as being a tad classier than brass/steel).  We have, as you can see, beams from which to hang them.
The kids have made approving noises (only a couple have tried to dislodge them, dear little munchkins that they are) and we're happy with them too.  Nobody's asked me recently what 'fiction' or 'nonfiction' means, either... and in the reading retreat, I can point out that the sign doesn't say 'yapping', 'rabble wanted' or various other things contrary to the sign's content...
*GIFSL = good ideas for school libraries. 
Please acknowledge the source of this original idea if you use it elsewhere, or blog/publicise your version - thanks!  Nonprofit use by schools/libraries is welcome: commercial organisations/enterprises please note that this combination of words is copyright and reproduction in any way requires written permission from the copyright holder.

1 comment:

Shane Symonds said...

Ruth: Great stuff. Once again, I wish I had thought of it and I wish I had more time to get it done! Inspirational! Regards, Shane