What to catalog? Everything!


The idea that became CatalogIt arose several years ago stemming from the need to document a collection of Native American baskets.  We began by outlining the characteristics that we believed would be important to fully document them and the app began to take shape. Once it had attained the level of development where I could use it, I went to work, photographing and cataloging the baskets.  It was really enjoyable- I was looking at them in more detail than ever and was constantly finding little details that I hadn’t noticed before. It was great to finally have good photos and all of the documentation- receipts, old photos, my anecdotes, in one place, and always at my fingertips through my phone!  I could easily open CatalogIt and find what I was looking for to show pieces to fellow collectors or to ask questions of experts, and edit the entry right there.

It was about then that it occurred to me that I also had a few Navajo rugs I would like to document. And some Pueblo pottery, and some Native Alaskan dolls, and some unusual souvenirs I’d picked up while traveling… I began to document everything, and I’m still going.

Many of us with the “collector bug” think of ourselves as a basket collector, a clock collector, a doll collector, a Hawaiian shirt collector, a model train collector, etc., and it is likely that we were first drawn to CatalogIt as a way to document those items and their stories.  Keep in mind that there is significant value in cataloging and capturing the story of all your treasures - in addition to your Hull pottery, how about those quilts your great aunt made? How about that desk you bought at an antique sale 35 years ago? How about your old family photos? How about that boomerang that’s been in the family since great uncle Joe returned from the Australian goldfields?

Branch out- you’ll be surprised by how many things you have with stories embedded in them just waiting to be told.  Don’t let the stories be lost!

Dan Rael