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Design by the Book


Mining the Library's collections for art and craft inspiration.

The New York Public Library holds a wealth of unexpected sources of inspiration for artists and designers—from vintage valentines and textile patterns, to fabric samples and turn-of-the-century menus from around the world. For this online-only miniseries, Design by the Book, the Library partnered with the leading design blog Design*Sponge to invite five New York City–based artists to sift through our collections in search of inspiration. Watch as the artists, who range from a glassblower to a letterpress printer, create unique works inspired by what they found. Special guest Isaac Mizrahi joins us in Episode 2 to share his sources of inspiration.

Design by the Book was produced by Amy Azzarito and James Murdock, of The New York Public Library Digital Experience Group, with assistance from reference librarian Jessica Pigza, in partnership with Grace Bonney of Design*Sponge. The artists are: Lorena Barrezueta; Rebecca Kutys; Mike Perry; John Pomp; and Julia Rothman. Music by Clear Tigers.

Manufacturing Impact: Why We Digitize

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Mad Men Fashion

The series finale of Mad Men that aired on AMC on May 17 roughly coincided with NYPL's digitization of over one-thousand fashion illustrations produced in the 1950s and '60s by New York City-based firm Creators Studios. See if you can spot the traces of the show's female protagonists in these ready-to-wear design drawings.Read More ›

My Library: Children's Book Illustrators

The Children's Book Ilustrators Group (CBIG) presented us with an interesting project—we would choose a favorite children's book and they would create an illustration inspired by that book!  Rebecca, the Children's Librarian at Jefferson Market, chose

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A Paper Sculpted Goldfish.

Included among the books I brought out for last month's Handmade Crafternoon was one that I've been slow to return to the shelves because I want to try my hand at so many projects within it. The book in question is Kenneth Ody's Paper Folding and Paper Sculpture, and I'm a fan because it contains a really broad range of projects--from cute little projects like dog scuptures to some seriously elegant lacy paper 

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