Pin Your Perfect Library Contest Winner Announced

If you were thinking of founding a library anytime soon, we have some exciting news: Our Pin Your Perfect Library Pinterest contest created a plethora of patron-sourced ideas for what objects, people, and books should go into the Perfect Library

For those just walking through the virtual turnstile, here's what went down. For National Library Week, April 8-15, 2012, we invited library-loving Pinterest users to collect their ideas for what items should go in their vision of “the perfect library." Books, bookshelves, fireplaces, hammocks, writers-in-residence, pets, plants, celebrity staffers, food, crafts -- if you could dream it, you could pin it.

Over the course of the week, entrants filed in from New York to Los Angeles. There was a strong local contingency, too. All in all, ten Pin-testants contributed 460 pins. The ideas ranged from eye-popping public art displays, to quirky bookshelves, to Ryan Gosling memes.

In the end, it was tough to choose a winner. The four members of our Pinterest team – the group behind @KCLibrary's own Perfect Library board – had four different favorites, with four different arguments for why theirs was the best.

But when we revisited the contest rules, which stated that the winner would be determined in part by number of likes and repins, there was a clear champ.

Congrats to Elizabeth Willse, aka @ewillse! This New York City librarian had the highest numbers – as well as an inspiring array of pins – so we're declaring her our overall, best-in-show winner. We'll be in touch with Elizabeth to tailor a prize package of books chosen by our Readers' Advisory expert and contest judge Kaite Mediatore Stover.

But we’re not done pronouncing winners yet. There were so many great ideas shared over the week from so many inspired library users, that we’re declaring everyone a winner in their own special category.

Most Thoughtful / First Runner-Up: With a board full of ideas we could see in a real-world library, Abbe Wood was a close contender for the top honors. Her simple, unique, and heartfelt pins like "Escape the Rain" and "Refreshments" captured the spirit of a public library.

Best Use of Levar Burton / Second Runner-Up: Brooke Ballentine-Alfino, aka KC Crafty Mama, knew that no library would be complete without everyone's favorite Reading Rainbow host.

Most Prolific: Leslynn Gregory of the Carrollton (Missouri) Public Library in stormed the boards with 120 pins.

Best New-pinner: Cat-in-the-Hat hats off to Jody Donohue, who announced on Twitter that she was embracing Pinterst so she could participate in the contest.

Best Children's Collection: If Erin Hogan isn't already on track to be a children's librarian, she should consider it. Her taste in kids' and young adult books is outstanding.

Best Staff: Madelaine Gogol not only picked an interesting lineup of authors to staff the circ desk (Amy Sedaris, Mark Bittman, Neal Stephenson, and Barbara Kingsolver, to name a few) but even appointed a "Health and Safety Associate."

Best Hometown Library Shout-out: Lindy Rhodes remembered her library roots, giving love to her hometown library in Louisburg, KS, which holds an edible books contest every year.

Best Harry Potter Reference: Lots of Pintestants made room for Harry Potter, but only Vanessa Cox had the idea to shelf the actual books from Hogwarts Academy.

Best Minimalist: JediKitty went with the less-is-more approach and pinned only one idea, and it was a small but good one.

That’s it for our first-ever National Library Week Pinterest contest. Thanks to all who pinned – we hope you had as much fun as we did.

If your creative juices are still flowing (and if you live in the Kansas City area), we invite check out our newest social media contest: Alphabet Kansas City.

There’s never a shortage of adventures to be had at the Kansas City Public Library.

Follow-all these Pin-tastic judges:

Alicia Ahlvers
John Keogh
Kaite Stover

About the Author

Jason Harper is the web content developer and social media manager at the Kansas City Public Library.
Kansas City Public Library on Facebook    Kansas City Public Library on Twitter    Kansas City Public Library on YouTube    Follow KCLibrary on Pinterest    KC Unbound RSS feed