Bookmark Collection

Posted by Brette in Collecting
The beginning of my bookmark collection

The beginning of my bookmark collection

One of my travel collections is bookmarks. They are wonderful to collect because bookmarks are sold in almost any destination and they are small, light, and inexpensive, making them easy to transport home and easy on the wallet. Bookmarks have been around as long as there have been books. Medieval book readers used them and it’s likely even papyrus scrolls were marked with bookmarks. (Read a brief history of bookmarks here.)

My bookmark collection started with a little bookmark I was given when our local library moved to its new home, about 13 years ago. We went to the grand opening and the first visitors were given bookmarks. I really liked it and I realized that bookmarks represented so much about me – not only am I someone who writes book, but I am an avid reader of books. I also love locally made hand crafts and there are many artisans who create bookmarks. My collection was born.

My bookmarks are displayed in groups in large frames in my office. Some are behind glass. Others are simply attached to a backing and put in a frame (if they are too thick for glass to fit over them). My husband has become very adept at attaching bookmarks with invisible fishing line with a little stitch to hold them in place. When I bring my bookmarks home, they live on a shelf next to my desk until there are enough to fill a new frame. I’m always so excited when I have enough to create a new display!

I have bought bookmarks from so many places over the years. When I first started  I bought a few at local bookstores, but my collection has evolved to where I now only buy them while traveling. As always, it’s not only about the end purchase, but the thrill of the hunt. This gives me a reason to go in stores and tromp around places I might not feel compelled to go. And each bookmark carries some special travel memory for me now.

This wooden bookmark was bought in Alaska. I love the bear. While we did not see a polar bear on

Alaska bookmark

Alaska bookmark

our trip, we did see a black bear. Our cruise ship actually turned around in the middle of dinner one night to circle past a bear and her cub who were on the shore eating a whale carcass. That’s the reason I bought the bookmark. It reminds me of that evening and the beauty of the Alaska scenery (so wild yet so beautiful).

You might wonder, do I actually use these bookmarks? I don’t and have to admit I often find myself grabbing a post-it note or scrap of paper to mark my place, even though I have a few bookmarks that are not display items. I’m always misplacing them!

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