Pinterest 101: Getting Started

Pinterest is a great resource for librarians and library staff, great for Makerspaces, and a good site for plain-old-fun, too!  Here’s a quick how-to to get started on Pinterest:

  • After you create an account here, the site will also ask you to pick your interests – they will be topics you follow, and Pinterest will suggest boards & pinners related to those interests.  Don’t feel bound to getting it perfect right away – you can update these later.

Main page

Main page example

Your main page has pins which are based on the interests you selected during sign-up.  Pins are images that link to content on other sites – some people pin pictures, others pin for other external content.

Anatomy of a pin

  • Pin example 3The description underneath the image can be changed when you repin the pin
  • Under the description, we can see that the pin has been repinned 150 times and liked 80 times
  • The pin was found in “Humor” – you would see this if you selected “Humor” as an interest
  • When you hold your cursor over the Pin, you will see three buttons that allow you to Pin it to one of your boards, Send it privately to a fellow pinner, or Like it (the heart icon)Top of Pin
  • Pinterest will show you pins based on your interests, but will also suggest new boards and pinners for you.




  • You can follow pinners by typing their name in the search bar, selecting “Pinners” underneath the bar, and selecting “Follow” underneath their profile link
  • The circle with the check mark inserted means that Pinterest has verified this is THE New York Public Library’s (NYPL) Pinterest account
  • Following NYPL ensures that all of their pins show up on your main page



NYPL boards

  •  You can follow boards instead of pinners as well
  • These are two of the NYPL’s boards – if you’ve had your fair share of internet cats, you can decide to follow just “NYPL <3 U”
  • Following a board ensures that all of the pins to that board show up on your main page, but not all the pins that the pinner pins


Well, now you’ve got a hold on Pinterest!  As with any other site, there’s some more exploring that you can do to learn more and get more out of your account.  One of the best things about Pinterest is it’s ease of use – especially as a new user – the site will show you what to do.

Happy pinning!