Librarian Wardrobe

Not always buns and sensible shoes, librarians at various types of libraries have different styles (and dress codes). Check it out here or submit your own.


LW Valentine’s Day Crush Post!

You made your nominations (there were close to 150! you guys really love each other!), and we went through them to select a couple people in each category: we have two winners by sheer number of nominations, and three by crush-level (or by how hard you must have been crushing when you wrote about this person). And we weren’t originally planning on having a library school student category, but since there was such a clear and charming winner, we couldn’t resist. The questions asked are mostly based on what you said you wanted us to ask your crushes in the nomination form.

Keep some smelling salts nearby to bring you back to consciousness, here they are:

Ingrid Abrams: Most Nominations

LW: Tell us about your favorite outfit and the story behind it
IA: I don’t have 1 special outfit. Each ensemble is a special, special snowflake. I get dressed up pretty much every day. I’m partial to sailor dresses, square dance skirts, colorful tights, sparkly shoes, and 50s circle skirts. I’d like to look like a combination of Little Edie Beale and Weetzie Bat. When I thrift, I look for anything with sequins or that’s beaded. Nearly everything I own is vintage or thrifted.

LW: What is your dream Valentine’s Day date?
IA: actually took Valentine’s Day off from work this year. I enjoy it that much. I think the color combinations of Valentine’s Day really appeal to me. I like all the pink and red and all the sparkles. I’ve spent the last 2 years with my boyfriend, who’s a librarian-to-be. Valentine’s Day with us includes a vegan dinner somewhere in NYC, usually Sacred Chow or Foodswings. We’ll look at records or maybe walk on the Highline. The rest of Valentine’s Day is classified.

Ingrid Abrams is a Children’s Librarian for Brooklyn Public Library. She is a founding member of Urban Librarians Unite and a 2012 Emerging Leader. She can be found blogging at

Peter Bromberg: Most Nominations

LW: Tell us about your tie collection and do you feel it is necessary to match your ties with your socks?
PB: I have a collection of about 100 ties, at least half of them purchased between 1988-89 and 1992-93 when I worked at Nordstrom and was able to pick up some great items heavily discounted.  When my dad passed away last year I selected a few ties from his collection just to remember him by. The tie I’m wearing in this picture was one his — it’s a John Blair, 100% Dacron Polyester :-)    I have a few favorites, and at least one “magic tie that literally goes with anything, but I try to rotate and wear each one at least once during the year.  Do I feel it’s necessary to match ties with socks?  Nah.  I don’t think it’s necessary to match anything with anything. If you want to match, match.  If you want to clash, clash.  Wear what you feel like wearing, life is short.

LW: What are your plans for Vday?
PB: On Valentine’s Day my wife and I will probably walk into town, grab a bite and a drink at one of our favorite local establishments, walk home, jump in the hot tub, then meet up on the couch and watch an episode or two of “How I Met Your Mother”, on Netflix. (I just read this to her and she laughed and said, “that sounds perfect”.  I couldn’t agree more.) 

Peter Bromberg is just a simple librarian trying to make it in this crazy world. He is Assistant Director, Princeton Public Library, Princeton, NJ, find Peter at


Jason Wong: Best Nomination

First off, Jason is one of my major fashion crushes in the LIS world. He is definitely one of the best dressed librarians around (suit and ties but not in a stodgy old man way). Secondly, he is an amazing librarian that works well with students and provides interesting instruction sessions (nothing wrong with using Gin and/or/not Tonic to teach Boolean logic right?). His passion and interest in law/legal issues is crushworthy as he has great knowledge on the topics or will find out and let you know as soon as possible. He also gives back to the community and serves on a volunteer board. Lastly, he is a fantastic person and a friend.  

LW: Tell us more about your instruction sessions, they sound classy and maybe are channeling Mad Men a little! 

JW: Leading instruction sessions are definitely one of my most favourite job duties! I don’t know about ever reaching the same level as Don Draper, but I certainly do try to channel his commanding demeanour when I’m at the front of a classroom. What I wear is definitely a huge part of that, so I pull out my best “suit of armour” for the job: a crisp dress shirt, a suave tie, fitted blazer, and trim trousers. To cap it all off, a nice, shiny pair of black dress shoes that make that authoritative staccato as you walk.

My sessions are all tied to the major assignments of the course, and I start and end them with the mantra that the reason why I am in the class is to help them save time, prevent frustration, and help them get a better grade. And I truly believe that the adrenaline rush that you get during and after the big presentation is unbeatable - the thought that I have just successfully pitched the library as being open, helpful, and awesome makes me very proud to be a part of the profession.

LW: Do you have plans for Vday? What was the best Vday you’ve ever had?

JW: Well, I plan to spend it with my one true love: wine, possibly with some great company. As for the best Vday that I’ve ever had, it was during one year in high school when I received an anonymous candy gram. There was a very flattering message attached, and I was very moved, to say the least. I never did find out who sent me the candy gram though, so if you’re reading this, secret-admirer-from-high-school: do drop me a line ^_~

Jason’s bio: I’m an Aries, a business librarian, and most probably a Cylon. My interests include wine, Korean pop music (K-pop!), blazers & ties, and more wine. I was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, and I graduated last June from the University of Alberta in Edmonton with my MLIS. The best parts of my job are showcasing all the fantastic resources that the library has to offer, and seeing the looks of amazement on a patron’s face when I am able to find exactly what he/she needs.

Celia Perez: Best Nomination

Fashionwise, for her 366 days of feet Facebook project, featuring a different picture of her feet (or occasionally guest feet), notable for her bold pairing of socks and flip-flops (aka chanclas, because she’s Latin). Please friend her on Fb if you’re not already, so you can see the pictures. Plus she rocks the nerdy/punk/crafty librarian look so many aspire to, but fail to achieve, especially on the verge of turning 40 like Celia is, with glasses, braids, Chucks and well-chosen or handmade accessories. If you ever expand this to cover home decor, Celia is your girl for that, too.

LW: Please tell us about your art/science of sock selection and where you get your style inspiration.

CP: In one of the two family portraits ever taken of my family (and mind you, these are incomplete since my younger brother was not yet born) my older sister and I are wearing identical dresses and matching knee highs. Her socks white, mine navy, both pairs decorated with two little pom poms hanging from braided strings on the outer sides of the socks. I loved those socks. Perhaps that is where my affinity for knee highs comes from. Knee highs are youthful and sweet, but also kind of tough (think tube socks)! In addition to knee highs, I am a tights junkie. Living in Chicago, I especially dig thick sweater tights. Oh, how I love me some HUE! Pattern-wise, I have a soft spot for striped socks (I own several pairs of these) and for argyle socks which I find nerdy, but also sexy because they remind me of the look skaters sported in the mid-90s. 

In general, what little style I possess is inspired by children’s books, old Sassy magazines and laziness. I’m thinking more paper crowns in 2012. It’s true, I never grew up!

LW: Any librarians that *you* have a crush on?!

CP: Jenna Freedman, always. I meant to nominate her for this because she is an all-around good egg. I had the pleasure of going on a zine-reading tour with her this summer and the time spent with her just impressed upon me more how dedicated she is to the work she does as a librarian and as a zinester. She is the kind of librarian who goes above and beyond the call of duty. Plus, I love her blue hair and her hardware jewelry. I also have a librarian crush on my friend Travis Fristoe who was influential in my real entry into zine-making as well as my going into librarianship. Jenna and Travis have both found ways to weave their personal interests into their professional lives. It’s really inspiring to see all the amazing things they come up with in terms of services, collections and programming in their libraries, as well as in their personal pursuits. I’m in a certificate of advanced studies in youth services program, and I have a librarian crush on my professors who are so incredibly knowledgeable and cool. They constantly blow my mind.

Celia C. Perez is a community college librarian and writer in Chicago. She loves being the mother of a six-year-old boy, making zines, reading children’s books, and photographing her shoes and socks for her 366 Days of Feet project. She maintains a blog about Latinos in children’s and YA books at

David Gallin-Parisi: Best Nomination

Let me count the ways: David is a new teen services librarian at a branch public library in San Antonio, TX. He has awesome style, and seems to wear a tie almost every day to work (the teens and tweens seem to get a kick out of this! they also love his multiple pairs of glasses!). I have a crush on him because he is sensitive without being a push-over; he has a unique ease with teens/tweens without being patronizing or immature; he can talk and laugh with grown-ups and kids alike; he is an idea fountain without being pushy; he combines his artistic talents with his professional work. Last week he had teens and elderly patrons making snow globes out of old jars, glitter, and glycerin. He led a “Guybrarian DJ” group of dude librarians while at grad school in NC; he DJs with turntables and LPs. Word on the street is that he’s an amazing chef and baker, too — man oh man, what’s there not to love about all that?

LW: How are you so stylish?! Where do you get your inspiration?

DGP: Thanks for thinking. Let’s see, I love clothes, photography, and art - so I look at lots of photos from magazines, tumblrs, and even Land’s End catalogs (supposedly for the most boring people ever). Everything and anything gives me ideas, from record sleeve artwork to documentary photographers touring the country in a t-shirt to mixing colors of pink and purple. My favorite places for strictly fashion inspiration are Mister Mort’s photos, A Silent Flute’s tumblr, and aNYthings’ glob. BTW, those are NSFW for the most part! I also love Librarian Wardrobe, and how it showcases librarians talking freely about fashion, separate from their work. This highlights how fashion is crucial to library work too! Stay stylin’ librarians!

LW: What are your best tips for relating to teens and tweens? 

DGP: I’ve actually gotten really good tips from Librarian Wardrobe! Like this. It helps to always let teens make fun of you. I wear lots of ties, and so letting teens make fun of my tie works wonders for building meaningful relationships. Making fun is meaningful. Also, I’m not afraid of looking nerdy or librarian-like. When I first started working, the most common question teens asked was, “Are those prescription glasses?” A trend is people wearing glasses frames just for the look, without lenses. So my specs both blend-in and stick-out. Work is easier for me when I dress more grown up, instead of dressing like a teen. This sex-ed teacher mentions how he started wearing a sweater vest to help with teaching teens, which I definitely agree with. Finally, the best way to relate to teens - and anybody for that matter - is to give your own personal style. Whether it’s how you dress, how you talk, or how you ask about video games, creating and giving your own personal style engages others. Teens especially dig when I’m being myself.

David’s bio: I’m a new resident in San Antonio, Texas, just moved here nine months ago from Chapel Hill, North Carolina. I’m a teen services librarian, helping teens and tweens bring their ideas to life. I love sound and art, and all the ways people use sound and art to make their world into something new. I collect vinyl records, and always enjoy headbanging to many varieties and kinds of music. I plan to leave more time for my own music-making, art-making or both. My art-making and education coordinating background helps me devise fun and compelling projects at the library. I’ve worked at a radio station, at an art museum, in food service, at a thrift store, as a DJ, and more. Also, the subtitle from when John Lennon and The Beatles appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show applies to me too: “Sorry Girls He’s Married.”

Axa Mei Liauw: Library School Student Crush

LW: How do you pull off your amazing style? Is it all in confidence? Tell us your secret!

AML: It is all about confidence! Be comfortable with yourself, and you’ll have swagger like no other. Having a puppy next to you helps too.

LW: If you could be any animal what would you be and why?

AML: That’s a tough question. It’s a toss-up between a Pygmy Marmoset and an Emperor Tamarin. Marmosets took over a Shirelles song on the YouTube. Emperor Tamarins have neat mustaches. They’re both really cute and tiny. Either way I could hitch a ride on your shoulder. 

Photo credits: the pup in the photo is Honey Badger. It was taken by Annie Rosenthal.

Axa is an MLIS student at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ. She works at Rutgers University’s Mabel Smith Douglass Library as an Information Assistant and at Columbia University’s Digital Science Center as an ARL Fellow. Axa also provides technical and educational support for her peers. Inspirations for her style come from fuzz and twee pop, Carl Sagan, Nerd Boyfriend, Cute Overload, and Mr. Rogers.


We hope you enjoyed this year’s crush edition! We just may do it again next year if LW is still kicking. Happy Valentine’s Day!

  1. uoftlonghorns reblogged this from librarianwardrobe
  2. boomshackalack reblogged this from librarianwardrobe and added:
    lovely wife nominated me! post-it note action.
  3. thepinakes reblogged this from librarianwardrobe and added:
    None of the crushes I submitted won (sigh)…nor did I. But check out the lovely lads and lasses nominated by the masses...
  4. paperandparticles reblogged this from librarianwardrobe
  5. thedanaash said: AXA!!
  6. librarianwardrobe posted this