I have an area in an app where old items are stored, using a 'locked' metaphor. Items can be unlocked, and brought back, but after they're locked, they are sent to a larger list of locked items and hidden from the main view.

I need a one word title for an area where locked items are stored. Right now, its called 'Archives', and has a lock symbol above it, but this feels like a bit of a mixed metaphor

My alternative is to call old items 'Archived', but my issue there is 'Unarchive' feels like awkward phrasing.

What's a good way for this metaphor to really follow through?

  • would 'Restore' be clear for items that are taken from the Archive back to the main UI? What type of app is this? Maybe some more context will help the community to find an appropriate label.
    – Mike M
    Commented Jul 7, 2017 at 22:27
  • You could call it "Stored".
    – PhillipW
    Commented Jul 8, 2017 at 6:30

3 Answers 3


Archive/ Unarchive are familiar terms for a user. Your issue seems to be that "archive" action needs to suggest also that the items are no longer available if the user doesn't want to buy again the products.

In this case, "Locked items" and "Unlock" seems a more natural choice. Depending on what exactly are the permissions for that items, the terms can be replaced with "read only" or "restricted" and "buy again". It is important to define as clear you can the actions, even is not a single word or the most used in similar cases.


One option for the storage location is "attic" - it evokes unorganized, long term storage.

Taking a cue from Gmail, instead of saying "Unarchive", they say "Move to Inbox". Likewise, you could say "Move to Attic" (or "Move to Archives" or "Store in Attic"), and conversely "Move to (insert name for main view here)"


Quite honestly, I think the simpler option (Archive/unarchive) is easy enough to be understood by everyone without any additional explanation.

Something I have seen in games is Chest and then simply Use, don't know if it serves to your purposes.

All in all, when working with terminology, it's very important to know the target, type of application, demographics and cultural environment. If this is for business, just keep it simple. If it's for a game, or at least for a younger demographic group, you can be more playful

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