As most of us know by now, Hancock Fabrics, a long-time supporter and partner of the American Sewing Guild has declared bankruptcy and all stores are closing.  While it is disappointing to lose a source of quality fabric and sewing supplies, this closure has a big impact on our ASG Chapter.  For years, the Hancock Fabrics in Roseville, MN provided space for the Minneapolis/St. Paul Chapter’s library and office at no cost and the Chapter Advisory Board met there each month.  In addition to the library, Chapter property like the portable sewing lab and supplies for community service sewing were stored in the office space.

For a number of years, our ASG Chapter has been a guild member of the Textile Center.  One of the perks the Textile Center provides to member guilds is library maintenance. 

Advantages

  • Open more hours
  • Location – main floor rather than basement
  • Integration into the Textile Center’s library of more than 27,000 volumes.
  • Access to the library collections of the Textile Center and other member guilds, including the Weaver’s Guild of Minnesota, Upper Midwest Bead Society, and Minnesota Knitters’ Guild among others.

The main disadvantage of having our library integrated into the Textile Center collection is the need for our chapter members to have a Textile Center library card to check materials out.  To provide cards to our members, the Textile Center charges a $1 per guild member library maintenance fee, an additional cost of about $350 based on the Chapter’s current membership. In the past, our chapter leaders decided to maintain the library independently rather than paying the library maintenance fee for our entire membership.  Reviewing the use of the ASG library for the past several years, only a few of our members are taking advantage of the resources in our library.  Also, some ASG members are individual members of the Textile Center.  Library Check out privileges are included with an individual membership.

Understanding the challenges of a small organization operating on a limited budget, the Textile center has agreed to work with us on providing a number of library cards to our chapter that will meet the needs of our members who want to take advantage of the library collection without expecting us to pay the library maintenance fee for our entire membership. 

Now we need to determine how many of our members plan to use the library now that it has moved.  Short term, the plan is for each Chapter Advisory Board and neighborhood Group leader to have a library card.  Other members who would like library cards need to let us know.  This can be done by sending an email to library.card@asg-mpls-stpaul.org or by calling the Chapter’s Textile Center Liaison, Mary Anderson at 651-330-2736.  Or consider an individual membership to the Textile Center.  To find out more about the Textile Center’s discounted membership for members of guild members, check their website at http://www.textilecentermn.org/member.