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April 8, 2008 9:08 AM   Subscribe

Help me furnish our new library by making an online registry!

The main library in my system is moving to sleek new quarters in the fall, and they need some new furniture. My director asked if I could make a sort of registry site where people could "buy" chairs and tables and so on, and I said, "Yeah, probably."

I've been looking some e-commerce software, but while some might work, they all seem bigger and clunkier than what I need.

Basically, I just want people to see pictures, quantities, and prices for the furniture and then be able to "buy" a piece (probably via PayPal). So the site would say "there are 5 chairs available," and then after someone "bought" one, it would say "there are 4 chairs available."

Is there a program out there that would work well for this, or would I be better off building my own form? If I choose to do the latter, what kind of skills will I need? Like donnagirl, I work for an awesome library that is giving me time specifically to devote to this project, and also like donnagirl I have some basic html & css skills, and I've also done a little cut & paste php jiggery-pokery, but I'm not a programmer by any stretch of the imagination. I anticipate doing more similar sorts of things for the library, so learning new skills would, I think, be worthwhile in the long run, but if there's a simpler solution in the short run, that would also be helpful.
posted by newrambler to Computers & Internet (4 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I just did a quick google search on "furniture online wish list" and one of the first links was Kaboodle. Would something like that work ? I haven't used it, but it looks like you can basically make an online wishlist of anything.
posted by jmnugent at 9:14 AM on April 8, 2008

Do you mean literally have the patrons buy the furniture for the library, or do you mean a charitable situation where patrons would sponsor an existing chair or somesuch?
posted by astruc at 9:40 AM on April 8, 2008

I was wondering the same thing (for creating a non-traditional wedding registry). I'll keep an eye on this thread.

Similar question as astruc: do you envision aggregating other shopping website registries and have people actually purchase from, say, Herman Miller, or do you envision having people "donate" and then you go out and buy the furniture?
posted by jabberjaw at 9:46 AM on April 8, 2008

It's more along the lines of a charitable thing--we need the money to buy the furniture, but the furniture comes from fancy library vendors, so the site is just to collect the money. As an incentive to giving, however, we want people to be able to say, "I bought one of those tables!", so I want something where people can see the stuff available, give money for a particular thing, and then have the site show the things that are left for the next donor.

Kaboodle is cool, but I don't think it would work with the vendors we're buying from. (Note to self: get more vendor info from director!)
posted by newrambler at 9:48 AM on April 8, 2008

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