Growing up I took bookmarks for granted – I would just turn down the corner of the page to mark my place in a book – but as I reached my teenage years I received a bookmark from my beloved Aunt Margie, and that changed my outlook on bookmarks. Actually, after that I learned that there were many different kinds of bookmarks: colorful, humorous, insightful, and entertaining. I had discovered the wonderful world of bookmarks!
Bookmarks Are Memorable
My first bookmark was a silhouette of a hitter in the batter’s box. The book was The Official New York Mets Yearbook. I do not remember what year I received it, but I wish I would have kept all of those yearbooks now. I did keep the bookmark, and all these years later I still use it when I read a physical book.
I take pleasure in sitting in a chair and reading a book. It is a special kind of “me time” that reminds me of summers as kid sitting on the front porch reading on a rainy afternoon, transporting me to deserted islands, rainforests, the South Pole, and even faraway planets.
Different Kinds of Bookmarks
I have seen many different kinds of bookmarks over the years. Besides my favorite baseball bookmark, I have used postcards, ticket stubs, even an old credit card to do the job of marking my place in a book. There is also the very old-fashioned bound bookmark, which is attached to a book and can be used to mark your place. I remember a specially braided golden bound bookmark in our old family Bible. It seemed appropriately special for that book.
Bookmarks as a Teachable Moment
In my son’s school the English teachers have the students make their own bookmarks for the books that they are reading. It is a very creative process of thinking about the book’s theme and making a bookmark that depicts something from the book. This can be a symbol, a character, or anything related to the story. It also then becomes a keepsake of the reading experience.
Arts and Crafts Fun
You can do this with your children, and it is very simple. Use construction paper – you can also use regular white printer paper – pencils, and crayons to customize the bookmark. Pictures of the characters, images of the setting, and the title can appear on both sides of the bookmark.
If your child has a favorite character unrelated to a book, you can make a bookmark using that character (Elmo, SpongeBob, Minions, etc.), and the bookmark can be used in any book your child is reading. Use a hole puncher and tie a little string on top. To preserve it, laminate the bookmark, and it is a keepsake forever. If you don’t feel like putting your arts and crafts hat on, here is one of the many places you can get custom bookmarks.
Surprisingly in Demand
Surprisingly, despite the popularity of eBooks, there is a wide range of all kinds of bookmarks available. Bookmarks can be very simple, while others are made of leather, fabric, silk, wood, and many other materials. Some of them are works of art with a plethora of designs and patterns. You can explore at this link to see just how many bookmark types are out there and available online. It is truly amazing that the old-fashioned bookmark is available online where physical books’ existence continues to be challenged every day.
I will continue to use my baseball player bookmark, and every time I do it reminds me of the beloved person who gave it to me. My bookmark evokes fond memories about my aunt and time spent over the years reading some of the greatest books ever written. It is time to appreciate bookmarks. Ah, the wonderful world of bookmarks!