Thursday, August 3, 2017


Every six months, the Brisbane Convention Centre plays home to the Lifeline Bookfest. An event that sees thousands of second hand books sorted and displayed for readers alike to browse through, and give a new home. It’s a great way to fill up your bookcase, fill gaps in your collection and for costumers to add to their resource collection.

Back in my early days of attending Bookfest, I was simply interested in finding those out-of-print novels to complete the series. These days, I’m heading there with sewing and costuming in my mind. And the event never fails to give.

While I was a little more restrained in my purchases this time, I still came home with a great selection of costuming resources—finding books on sewing techniques, pattern, design and history. The hardest part of finding these is knowing which section to hit up. The areas you want to be looking in are:
  • Music and Art (by far I find the most here), 
  • Leisure (a lot of sporting and animal books to sort through, but the technique books are more  likely to be found here), and 
  • Rare and Out of Print (so many categories jumbled in, but the books we’re looking for are there). 
A particularly good find from my January trip, was what seemed to be a costume and historical fashion book collection in the rare and out of print section. I have deduced they came from an older ladies personal library. There were quite a number of books with her name listed in the front as owner.

But one of the biggest tips I can give is to take a fellow costumer with you. It will speed things up immensely. We hit the tables, one on each side and pass over any books that we think the other might be interested in as we browse. Less double handling of books and your back and feet will thank you in the long run.

But in the end, I came home with a great selection of books for my costume bookcase, and I can safely say that I will be heading to the next one in January 2018. I highly recommend keeping an ear out in your town to see if it’s hosted there and when the next one will be there.

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