Care for the “elderly” analogue magazines

One Special Interest we most likely share is “old” fashion magazines*). Fashion libraries have been buying or subscribing to print fashion magazines at a modest price for many years. It is common practice that current issues are heavily used for a while and by the time they are archived in the back volumes’ section of the library, they have become dear in more than one sense. They turn into a collection worthy of a museum: invaluable and very vulnerable. But fashion libraries are not  museums:  fashion libraries want their collections to be used.

Digitization still pending
The first option that springs to mind is to digitalize the “old” magazines page by page. There have been promising pilot projects, yes. That is a good thing good, yes. But these
are mere pilot projects and so substantial digitization is still pending. Moreover, it is a subject bristling with discouraging pitfalls such as: copyright, finance, scope, selection, quality, content description… etc.  At the same time we do not know whether publishers have digitalized copies of their paper editions hidden in a safe somewhere.  Maybe some of them have already made a deal with Google? If so, they kept it well up their sleeve…
For the time being, our library users will not stop flicking through paper magazines. So while publishers and librarians are brooding on cunning digitization plans in their respective lairs, I think that in the meantime there is still every reason to attend to “old”
fashion magazines with utmost care. I would be interested to know how other fashion libraries deal with “old” fashion magazines. As a kick-off, I will give  a brief description of how we at AMFI handle them:

Storage of the “elderly”

  1. we keep them in acid free, snug, made-to-measure boxes. This allows for storage in an upright position, very much like a book, preventing the pages from sagging.
  2. the content of each box is limited to portions that are ‘easy to handle with
    caution’, meaning that a box can be taken from the shelf with one hand (like
    most books).
  3. the boxes are designed so as to allow smooth handling without too much abrasion, friction and torsion when a stack is taken out of the box or slid

So much for storage. – Now for the really difficult questions:

How to handle the “elderly”?
How to make sure that library users will handle these magazines properly? How to instruct them properly? Is a solemnly sworn oath, before giving them access to the old magazine section, sufficient guarantee for proper handling? And what is “proper handling” to begin with? Do we really need a detailed protocol for users, that includes imperatives such as : to wear protective gloves to protect the magazines?

Since I would answer the last question with a yes, I am looking forward to your suggestions,  experiences, good or even best practices, as to help me put together a protocol that enables our library users to treat  the “elderly” analogous fashion
magazines with due respect.

…ehm…  Take care!

Fred Goudswaard
librarian AMFI
(Amsterdam Fashion Institute)

*) e.g. Depeche Mode, Face, I-D Magazine, Marie-Claire, Marie-France, Petit Echo de la Mode, Tank, various Vogue editions …etc.

Two hot new trend links added to FTC LibGuide

Today I stumbled upon two new trend forecasting links available for free from Stylesight:

Stylesight Trend Talk Video Briefs:

Stylesight Fashion Office Buzz:

For those of you who don’t subscribe, or don’t have a budget for trend forecasting services, these links are very useful tools for fashion design & merchandising students.

Don’t forget that there are lots of other free trend forecasting/reporting links, courtesy of Stylesight and Fashion Snoops!   You can access them all here:

Sandra Ley (FTC SIG Moderator)


FTC SIG Operational budget / special funding needs?

Hi FTC’ers:

If you have any suggestions for FTC SIG project or activities for which we’d need an operational budget, please respond to this message, or e-mail me directly.  (See related ARLIS/NA List e-mail, send June 28th, below.)


Sandra Ley (FTC SIG Moderator)


Hello All,

Prior to the mid-year Executive Board meeting in September,
I will be preparing the draft budget for fiscal year 2012.  If your chapter, committee, division, section or special interest group has operational budget needs, or has special projects it wants to pursue in the upcoming year, please send me your budget request by September 1st so that these expenses can be considered by the Executive Board for inclusion in the 2012 ARLIS/NA budget.

The Special Funding Request Guidelines are now up on the ARLIS/NA web site (thanks Nedda!) with links to the application forms.

For chapters:

For committees, divisions, sections and special interest

You can submit applications electronically or in paper to me
directly at the contact information below.  Please let me know if you have

Tom Riedel

ARLIS/NA Treasurer


Tom Riedel

Distance Services Librarian & Assistant Curator, Santo Collection

Treasurer, ARLIS/NA

Fashion Snoops & Stylesight blogs posted to FTC LibGuide

Since two major trend forecasting services, Fashion Snoops and Stylesight, are generously offering significant amounts of information free online via their blogs, I’ve updated our FTC LibGuide accordingly.

You can now find links to the main Fashion Snoops and Stylesight blogs under the “Trend Forecasting” tab, and links to each blog and blog subcategory under the “Websites/Pathfinders” tab within the “Blogs” content box.  (Just search alphabetically for “Fashion Snoops” and “Stylesight” and you’ll find all the related blogs.

If I’ve missed anything, please let me know and I’ll update again!


Stylesight’s Market Blogs now available to the public

For libraries that can’t afford subscriptions to trend forecasting services, this is great news.  (We’ll take all the freebies we can get!)  🙂

Stylesight’s Market Blogs now available to the public: