How Dazzle designs lit up Easter

We ran Dazzle workshops over the Easter holidays in libraries across the city to see what interesting and varied patterns people would come up with for their empty ship outline.

More than 150 people took part over the holidays in events at Central, Moredun, Muirhouse, Oxgangs, Fountainbridge, Wester Hailes, Sighthill, Stockbridge, Granto, Ratho and Sighthill.   As you can see from our pictures there were a variety of techniques and approaches used by people of all ages!

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The resource was really intuitive with children of all ages quickly understanding how the resource works with some people returning to libraries to have another go, improving, refining and redrafting their patterns!

Many people liked colouring-in their patterns but there were interesting experiments with collage, fantastic detailed pencil illustration and bright, vibrant painting.

Feedback said the events were “a bit different” “really interesting” “worked great as a joining-in activity” “would like to see more events for families doing a project together” and “Very welcoming staff. I liked the idea of the project. It would be great if the project was promoted in schools.”

Staff at Granton thought that having examples of different techniques was a useful way to inspire people and create varied outcomes and a member of staff at Wester Hailes used his experience as a draughtsman to design a 3D template based on the initial outline.

Wester Hailes 3d

The events were our first attempt to do some work on Dazzles with a view to doing more work with schools this term, the forthcoming commemoration for the Battle of Jutland and the unveiling of Ciara Phillips’ Dazzle Ship and close partnership with Edinburgh Art Festival supporting exciting creative activities in libraries over the summer holiday.

Huge thanks to Ellis McKenzie for designing the outline and Out of the Blueprint for RISO printing the beautiful templates, and massive thanks to all the staff in libraries who took made it possible for so many people to Dazzle up their Easter break!

If you’re interested in finding out more about Dazzle or using the resource in your school, library or after-school club contact Colm Linnane on or 0131-242 8121.

A brand new book festival for young readers!

Morefun poster

Introducing MoreFun, a four-day celebration of books for children in the Moredun / Gilmerton area.

An exciting line-up of authors and storytellers includes Janis Mackay, Annemarie Allan, Sarah Stuart and Simon Radcliffe.

There will also be the opportunity for you to create your own book, collage, poetry or comic.

Plus there’s a chance to bring favourite tales to life with animation screenings in collaboration with the Edinburgh College of Art.

It all happens between 15 and 18 of June in Moredun Library.

Keep an eye on Moredun Library’s Facebook Page for updates.


Diary of a Wimpy Kid giveaway

You can pick up a FREE copy of Jeff Kinney’s hugely popular Diary of a Wimpy Kid in the following libraries tomorrow:

Wester Hailes, Ratho, Moredun, Fountainbridge and Kirkliston.

(You can pick up a FREE copy of Diary of a Wimpy Kid in other libraries as well, only difference is that you have to bring that one back after three weeks!)

The giveaway is part of the Just Read campaign which you might have read about on social media or seen on ITV’s Good Morning Britain. It’s all about encouraging parents to spend ten minutes reading with their children every day.

A report by Read On. Get On. revealed hundreds of thousands of kids are leaving school without adequate reading skills and that one in seven children aged 8 – 11 years does not own a book of their own at home. Millions of children are readers because of Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Jeff Kinney’s work is perfect for turning reluctant readers on to books. With 50% words and 50% cartoons, the books are 100% hilarious and children agree – Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Hard Luck was voted by children as ‘Favourite Book’ in the 2014 Nickelodeon Kids Choice Awards.

As well as the giveaway, children who visit the libraries on 13th September will be able to enjoy other events on the day:

Author Jonathan Meres brings his unique brand of hilarity to Fountainbridge Library’s special hour-long event – the fun starts at 2pm.

Kirkliston Library is hosting a Wimpy Kid Party for ages 7-12 years from 2.00pm-4.00pm. Design your own Wimpy Kid book cover, make a badge to take home, and play our new Wimpy Kid board game!

Moredun Library are hosting a Diary of a Wimpy Kid fun day from 2pm – 3.30pm. There will be different activities for all ages to join in with: create your own character clay head, badge making, Diary of a Wimpy kid mask making and painting, plus a special Diary of a Wimpy kid treasure hunt around the library!

Ratho Library will be having a visit from author Jonathan Meres at 11am (busy man!), and afterwards we’ll be making reading diaries together.

Wester Hailes Library will be hosting author Janis Mackay at 2.30pm and then making a reading diary.

Win a day out at the Zoo with Tiger Tales

If you’re at Edinburgh Zoo on Saturday 24th May between 11am and 3pm come and help us celebrate the launch of Tiger Tales, our new story and craft group for parents with children aged 4 -8, with stories, crafts, activities, face-painting and loads of fun!

Tiger Tales logo new promo

For a chance to win a family ticket (2 adults and 2 children or 1 adult and 3 children) to the launch and entry to the zoo for the day, come along to one of the libraries listed below holding Tiger Tales sessions and enter the colour- in prize draw. The prize draw is for Tiger Tales session attendees only. Entries must be completed by 5pm Saturday 17th May and winners will be notified by Monday 19th May.

You can come along to Tiger Tales sessions at:

Fountainbridge Library – Saturday 17th May 3pm-4pm and every third Saturday after.

Moredun Library – Every Thursday 3:05pm-4pm

Ratho Library – Friday 9th May  2:30pm-3:15pm and every second Friday after.

Sighthill Library – Friday 2nd May 2pm-3pm and every second Friday after.

Wester Hailes Library – Friday 9th May 2pm-3pm and every second Friday after.

Hope you see you there!!!

The RRRReturn of the RRRRoadshow!

They’re back! The Reduce, Reuse, Repair and Recycle Roadshow is coming to a library near you!

Learn basic hand sewing skills and how to patch up jeans courtesy of Remade in Edinburgh’s repair workshops, who will also be offering a computer surgery. This is a perfect chance to get some free advice so bring your laptop in for an overhaul. Leith Library’s reader in residence did – read about how the experts helped her out.

Join creative reuse maker and educator Jaimie MacDonald to create simple and playful jewellery and other decorative items reusing household packaging and bottle tops. Suitable for all the family.

Plus, City of Edinburgh Council Advisors will be on hand to provide recycling information about all the recycling services provided in your area.

Whens and wheres:

South Neighbourhood Office & Library, 40 Captain’s Road, Edinburgh, Edinburgh , EH17 8HN  on Monday 5 August 10am till 12

Gilmerton Library, 13 Newtoft Street , Edinburgh , EH17 8RG on Tuesday 6 August 2pm-4pm

Newington Library, 17-21 Fountainhall Road , Edinburgh , EH9 2LN on Friday 9 August 2pm-4pm

Moredun Library, 92 Moredun Park Road , Edinburgh , EH17 7HL on Tuesday 13 August 3pm-5pm

Library news: artists, authors and athletes

Let the ticket booking frenzy begin! The programme for the Edinburgh International Book Festival is out, and as ever it’s looking good. The ‘Stripped’ strand on comics and graphic novels looks particularly exciting.

Remember though, we’ve got our own author visits programme in libraries which

a) runs all year long and

b) is free

Pru Irvine and Mary ContiniOur latest Edinburgh Reads event featured Volvona and Crolla director Mary Contini and food writer Pru Irvine. As the above picture proves both ladies – and our audience – had an absolute blast. Take a look at our events programme to see what else we’ve got lined up.

Moredun runnersMore happy ladies here. Moredun Library staff and Goodtrees Neighbourhood Centre joined forces to put together this team of girls who bravely completed the Race for Life in Holyrood Park, raising lots of money for charity in the process. Not content with this, the group are now planning their next big challenge which will be the Twilight walk round Dalkeith country Estate on 31st August. Good luck girls!

Returning to the Book Festival, as usual we’ll be there to entertain the younger troops with our Bookbug sessions and the ever popular Dr Book – and we’re delighted to say that some of the authors will be leaving their Charlotte Square base to visit children in libraries across the city.

John Fardell for instance. John is author of some terrific books including The Seven Professors of the Far North, The flight of the silver turtle and the wonderful Manfred the Baddie.

Mums and dads might also be familiar with John’s work for The List, The Independent and Viz (The Modern Parents and The Critics) but John’s visit to Central Library on 24th July is most definitely one for his younger fans.

John will show us his picture books and adventure novels, as well as a behind-the-scenes look at his notebooks, rough drafts, artwork and models. He’ll be giving us tips and answering any questions, and there will be an opportunity to join in and draw our own characters, inventions and stories.

We recommend you book online asap.

Finally, anyone coming to Central Library for this event – or any other reason – over the next couple of months is in for an extra bonus treat as the building is currently hosting the Central Inspiration art exhibition.

Central Library is not only the venue for the exhibition, the building and its collections are in fact the inspiration for artworks created by students from Edinburgh College of Art. And believe us these are well worth seeing.

We’ll be blogging more about this over the coming weeks, but in the meantime do try and get along – and see the library in a whole new light.

A library Christmas

Shakespeare in Edinburgh Central Library

You know the festive season is well and truly here when Shakespeare gets his Christmas on. Optimistic library staff have hung their stockings by the fireplace but I’m not convinced Santa will find a way to squeeze past the radiator.

Reference library fireplace

We’ve had scrumptious looking gingerbread decorating at Moredun….

And at Leith Library little Robbie got all dressed up for the Christmas Bookbug session. Cute enough for you?

Christmas Bookbug sesion at Leith Library

Not long to go now. Libraries will close at 5pm on Christmas Eve and revert to the usual opening hours on the 27th. For new year it’s a 5pm close on Hogmanay then back to normal on Thursday 3rd January. Merry Christmas everyone!