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13 Great Gifts for Librarians That They Won’t Want to Loan

Date 1.7.2022 Donna Emperador Donna Emperador

What do librarians like as gifts? I wondered the same thing. Of course, they most likely enjoy books, or they would probably choose another career. But there has to be more than just books to give them. Luckily, after brainstorming on my own, I went to visit my friends, Lynn and Paul. Paul just recently retired from working at the library after 32 years. I decided to pick his brain to come up with the best gifts for librarians. Some of these are no-brainers, but others I never would have thought of on my own. Luckily, I had Paul as a resource. After researching these gifts, I am going to add some to my own wishlist. You will want to get them too!

1. Literary Destination Travel

Best gift for librarians

Literary Destination Travel – Best gift for librarians

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Expedia.com

Paul said that librarians often enjoy traveling to destinations with famous bookstores, libraries, or that have some other literary significance. Choose one of these destinations and book the trip. They can use the guide to plan their day to day itinerary. These make great retirement gifts, especially if you have a bunch of people chipping in for the cost.

If you are looking for something less pricey, choose a literary tour in America near where they live.

Paul also noted that librarians like visiting libraries in other cities to see how they are organized. Wouldn’t it be amazing to set them up to tour the New York City Public Library or the Library of Congress? These tours are free, but it would be a nice gift to make a donation gift in their name.

2. Miniature Library Kit

Library themed gifts

Miniature Library Kit – Library themed gifts

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Amazon.com

Although Paul stated that many librarians enjoy recycling old damaged books for crafts, I couldn’t find any kits for that. So I did the next best thing. I found these cool craft kits to build miniature book stores, studies, and libraries.

Maybe they would like to try their hand at painting. Give them a paint by number of books that they can display on their wall when it’s completed.

Or perhaps your librarian prefers needle crafts. Get them a cross stitch kit with a book theme.

On the other hand, I did find these custom gifts made from old books. The pages are folded into a name or date. Although they aren’t crafts for them to make themselves, they are still cool. And they are made from old books.

3. Literary Rocks Glasses

Cool gift ideas for librarians

Literary Rocks Glasses – Cool gift ideas for librarians

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Etsy.com

I can picture someone sitting in a study, in a high back chair, sipping an aged scotch from one of these glasses, while reading a classic novel. An old world decanter sits on a shelf nearby, filled with golden liquid. It is like something out of Sherlock Holmes.

However, if they prefer wine, give them a novelty wine glass with a bookish line instead.

To create mixed drinks, they will love these literary bartending books. The titles are amusing.

For those who rather stick to coffee, one of these book mugs will bring a smile to their face.

4. Book Earrings

Jewelry gifts for librarians

Book Earrings – Jewelry gifts for librarians

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Etsy.com

These make cute gifts for school librarians because some of the choices are children’s classics. If you can’t find the book you want, some allow for customization.

If you are looking for a personalized gift for a librarian, some of these book pendants can be customized with an initial.

However, if they don’t like to wear things around their neck, a charm bracelet with book charms is a great alternative.

5. Glasses Holder

Useful librarian presents

Glasses Holder – Useful librarian presents

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Amazon.com

What do you buy a librarian? Choose a funny stand for their glasses. Then they won’t misplace them when they take them off. You can get several with different designs. They can place them in various rooms around the house, and have one at work.

Another option for those who wear glasses is a decorative glasses chain. This way, when they take their glasses off, they will be hanging around their neck.

Then I found these novelty lazy prism glasses. They are for reading while lying down to avoid a stiff neck.

6. Books About Libraries

Librarian gift ideas

Books About Libraries – Librarian gift ideas

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Amazon.com

Instead of being in a library, they can read novels about them. That makes for an interesting twist, doesn’t it?

You can also get them a Kindle subscription. They don’t have to have a Kindle to use this, although you can get them one. The screen on my phone is large enough that I can read from the Kindle app comfortably.

For more reading pleasure, get them one of the latest best sellers in literature and fiction.

7. Bucket List Scratch Off Poster

Interesting gifts for librarians

Bucket List Scratch Off Poster – Interesting gifts for librarians

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Amazon.com

They make these bucket lists for adult books and for kids’ books as well. The children’s bucket list reading poster would make a great gift for a school librarian. I used to volunteer in my child’s elementary school library. The librarian had read many of the books there so she could recommend them to students, based on their interests and reading levels.

Shakespearean insults is another interesting selection of gifts. You can get a mug covered in insults. Or get a daily calendar with an insult per day. You can even get a Shakespearean insults coloring book to help them destress after work.

Or maybe they would like a literary quote print to hang on their wall.

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You might want to take a look at gifts for other jobs too!

8. Vintage Books

Christmas gifts for librarians

Vintage Books – Christmas gifts for librarians

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Etsy.com

Vintage books are classy gifts. I love the way they look on a bookshelf. Even when their pages are yellow and torn, it just means those books were cherished by someone.

They will need some unusual bookends to keep the books from falling over.

Or give them a print of their favorite book cover to hang on the wall.

Then, for their Christmas stocking, get them a bookish ornament.

9. Trivia Games

Fun gifts for librarians

Trivia Games – Fun gifts for librarians

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Amazon.com

People who work at libraries often know a lot of trivia facts. After all, people are always coming up to them asking questions. Why not put their knowledge to good use and give them some trivia games to play with friends and family?

For those times they want to challenge themselves, get them some puzzle books, such as crosswords, sudoku, logic puzzles, and word searches.

For family fun, give them a library jigsaw puzzle to do with family during holidays when the libraries are closed.

10. Cool Book Coasters

Gifts for library lovers

Cool Book Coasters – Gifts for library lovers

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Amazon.com

Old books, typewriter keys, or library due date cards, these coasters are sure to be conversation starters.

Some people just like the smell of old books. To satisfy this whim, give them an old books candle.

Maybe they would like to display some novelty book soaps in their guest bathroom.

11. Literary Scarf

Wearable librarian gift ideas

Literary Scarf – Wearable librarian gift ideas

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Amazon.com

Sometimes libraries can be cold. These scarves will keep their necks warm, while making a fashion statement at the same time.

If you are looking for a funny librarian gift, give them literary socks to keep their feet warm.

Then choose a few literature ties as gifts for a male librarian.

12. Book Themed Purse

Unique librarian gifts

Book Themed Purse – Unique librarian gifts

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Amazon.com

These are purses, but they look like books! I am going to get one for myself, and I’m not even a librarian!

A folding book lamp is something I haven’t seen before. Open the book to turn on the light. Some change colors as well.

For some trompe l’oeil, give them a library wall tapestry to transform their home. I need to get one of these too.

13. Backpack for Lunch and Laptop

Work gifts for librarians

Backpack for Lunch and Laptop – Work gifts for librarians

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Amazon.com

Men and women often use backpacks for toting their stuff around. These backpacks have space for their gear and a laptop, but also have a bonus feature. There is a cooler section for packing their lunch. Unfortunately, my friend says that people sometimes take his food from the fridge at work. With an insulated lunch backpack they can keep their food cold, without subjecting it to the community refrigerator.

For bringing their morning coffee to work, give them a cool book themed travel mug.

Sometimes it’s not just the librarians getting the gifts. Sometimes they will want to give their library staff appreciation gifts. Try some of these vintage metal bookmarks. They are classy, but inexpensive. Plus, they are something everyone can use. I have been given numerous bookmarks over the years, and I always end up using a ripped piece of paper because I misplace them. Bookmarks are something a reader can never have enough of.

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Article author

Donna Emperador
Donna Emperador

I am an experienced freelance writer and travel blogger who loves discovering new and interesting things. During holidays, I love searching out perfect gifts for friends and family members, and I am happy that now I get to share my findings with you as well!

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