Making Library Books Your Own–Or, How to Create Your Own Signature Library Sticker

Making Library Books Your Own for Reverie of a Picture Book

I don’t steal library books. Really. I don’t. I simply adore the pure enjoyment and educational escapism my local library provides, and therefore I check out a lot of books, often.

Plus, as I’ve mentioned many times previously on Reverie of a Picture Book, twice a year the Friends of the Library of the Bismarck Public Library host a sale of used, donated books, as well as books the library has withdrawn from circulation because the books are rarely checked out, or the conditions are worn.

Heck, with a bunch of library books, whether at home or the actual library, I feel like Belle in “Beauty and the Beast”. You know the scene at the beginning of Disney’s movie? (I like the book lover’s paradise in the Beast’s palace, too!)

Belle in the Country Library for Reverie of a Picture Book Create Your Own Personal Library Signature Sticker


I’ve accumulated a nice bunch of previously-library-owned books for my personal collection. The problem has become, however, that I also end up with books on my personal book shelves that appear to have the need to be returned to the library. I subconsciously wonder,

Do I really own these books, or are these books overdue and I am racking up overdue fines? 

Previously Belonging to a Library--for A Reverie of a Picture Book Making Your Own Personal Library Signature Sticker

These are just a few of my previously-owned-by-the-library books. For the book-lover-curious-ones out there, this photo includes the picture book, “Corduroy” by Don Freeman, “A Field Guide to Shells of the Pacific Coast and Hawaii” by Percy A. Morris, “Simple Kitchen Experiments” by Muriel Mandell, “The Newbery and Caldecott Awards, Edition 2000”, and the picture book, “A Bird or Two: A Story About Henri Matisse” by Bijou Le Tord.

Ack! It’s stressful to think I am racking up overdue fines! So, I need an easy way to eliminate the confusion, eradicate the stress, and simply, cover up the library’s previous ownership.

Referring to my previous sticker removal for children’s books is helpful for most children’s books, but in this case of library stickers, those awesome methods of sticker removal can be time-consuming and counterproductive. Often times, the library’s books still have dust jackets and other protective covers that I would just as well keep protecting the books. If I had the time and the means, all of my children’s books would have dust jackets or plastic covers of protection!

So, I began to experiment with finding my own signature book sticker. Something simple, easy to duplicate and does the job of covering up the library’s obvious, previous ownership. Here’s what I found:

Simple Initials for Reverie of a Picture Book's Personal Library Signature Sticker

(Yep, that’s by my shaky hand.) Anyway, these simple initials were inspired by a monogrammed pin I received from being in a wedding when I was in second grade:

Sarah's Monogrammed Pin from Second Grade for Reverie of a Picture Book's Personal Library Signature Sticker

Eh, I adore the pin, but was not exactly impressed with my first attempts at my personal library signature sticker. So, I continued.

Reverse Initials for Reverie of a Picture Book's Personal Library Signature Sticker

This time I tried just two initials, and played around with how a cursive “S” and “I” can look like mirror images of one another. I just used some sticky-white paper from leftover name badges and a black Sharpie pen (extra fine point).

Simple Decor for Reverie of a Picture Book

Perhaps an homage to an albino Cheerio collection, or a cross between holey snow-people or a standing caterpillar?

To my two-year-old daughter’s disappointment (see her small finger in the upper left corner of photo), I decided to take a break from permanent markers (which I learned the hard way: Do not use permanent markers unless it is before she wakes or after she falls asleep) and play around with other mediums, like designs with old paper reinforcements. My daughter likes stickers, any kind. Remember those old “reinforcement” things? Do they still make them, or do I just find them at the bottom of my dusty and linty desk drawers? (That would be a Yes, and a Yes.) 

I could have kept playing around with simple designs using any kind of stickers, but I went back to my trusty Sharpies. (Nope, no royalties to me or this blog for referencing the name Sharpie. I just like them!)

Feeling like Goldilocks after trying discomfort first, I found on one of my last attempts (I was tiring of this experiment), something that fit my needs “just right”–something I could easily duplicate and I liked the appearance.

Ta-da. Here is my new Personalized-Library-Signature-Sticker, a small heart on a cut of an old name badge (self-adhesive backing) with a green fine Sharpie and a black extra-fine Sharpie:

Reverie of a Picture Book'sCreate Your Own Personalized Library Signature Sticker

Simple and imperfect, these new personalized library stickers of mine CLARIFY ownership. When these books are added back to the rest of my collection, I can quickly scan my shelf and know without a doubt that the books are truly belong to me. No doubt–These books are NOT racking up overdue fines. These books are truly mine now, and not the library’s books anymore.

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