Welcome to Lavender Menace

Creating a queer LGBT+ books archive

Lavender Menace queer LGBT+ books archive grew out of Lavender Menace which first opened as a lesbian and gay bookshop in Edinburgh in 1982. Founded by Sigrid Nielsen and Bob Orr, the name was revived in 2019, returned as a pop-up shop as part of the Stonewall 50 celebrations.

Logo: Lavender Menace Queer and LGBT+ Books Archive Eye

Since then, we have spent time speaking to the community and working with other LGBT+ partners and organisations. And the result is the next chapter in the Lavender Menace story: The Lavender Menace Queer Books Archive.

Our principle aim is to give space to hard-to-find and out-of-print queer LGBT+ books by establishing a ground-breaking digital and physical archive, supported by an interactive blog and our social media.

And you can get involved

As lockdown continues, we are encouraging you to record your own collection in your own queer LGBT+ archive. And we will be asking you to share it with us.

Queer LGBT+ books archive blog

Photo: A pile of open second hand books

We’ve already started blogging about the books in our growing archive. Books found in our own and friends’ collections and secondhand shops. And we invite you to comment. Tell us about your part of the queer library. And take part in readers’ conversations which wouldn’t have been possible when we opened the shop in the 1980s.

Our plans for the future

Once we’re all back to our outgoing, shared, queer existence, Lavender Menace will continue to run pop-up bookshops at events and run talks about the archive around Edinburgh and beyond. And we’ll post pictures as a record of our outreach activities.

So keep an eye out here as we develop this site and continue with our blog. We always love to hear from you, so please keep in touch through our social media or by email.