Category Archives: paper

Paper Boxes

I got a kit for mak­ing a paper box last week. It was from Books by Hand. They have a num­ber of kits for mak­ing books/albums and box­es using book board, book cloth, and dec­o­ra­tive papers. Ben Franklin sells the kits. Most­ly they sell com­plete kits but if you scout around you can find kits labeled “Just the Pieces” These con­tain just the die-cut book board pieces and the direc­tions you sup­ply your own paper and book cloth. I bought the kit to make the Japan­ese Fold­ing Box.
I used some cel­ery col­ored book cloth and a piece of silk screened paper that I had in my stash.

green japanese folding box closed up

It’s inter­est­ing because it unties and lays flat.

green japanese folding box untied and open flat

You build the box by fold­ing in the sides and then the fold­ing over the tops and tying. Kind of like this:

green box partly folded up

There ends up being a lot of extra board wrapped around what­ev­er you’ve got in there. Still it’s cool that it all falls flat when you undo it. think this would make a great con­tain­er for a book or a set of cards.

In fact Jim came up with a great idea for some­thing to put in it…

Playing with (paper) Dolls

This lit­tle har­le­quin dancer is sit­ting on my work­table wait­ing for a face. That’s always the hard part.

paper doll harlequin dancer

I start­ed with the doll parts and some fan­cy red and gold paper that became her tights.

Then she got a skirt.

harlequin dancer with black skirt

I start­ed with some organ­za and cut two lay­ers. the upper lay­er is notched and then the edge is fin­ished with a blan­ket stitch and some gold beads. Get­ting the beads to sit just right was a bit fid­dly and I had to wear my read­ing glass­es to see what I was doing. I don’t think I’ll try this with small­er beads!

detail of beading and edge stitching on the skirt

WIP — The Loop Road Project (pop-ups)

Our recent vaca­tion gave Jim the chance to take a lot of pic­tures of motor­cy­cles and rid­ers on the prover­bial “closed course.” Some of them are in fact “pro­fes­sion­al rid­ers.”

I now have tons of unclut­tered pho­tos to work with. Hence the cre­ation of a new series of work, this time in engi­neered paper.

First up:

Solo Red Bike

Not a very imag­i­na­tive name I know.

I had to remove the rid­er from the orig­i­nal pho­to in order to have a clear back­ground. Now that I’ve seen the piece assem­bled I think that I could have left the rid­er on the back­ground and sim­ply built the images out from there. It wouldn’t be as dynam­ic an image but it would have saved a bunch of time eras­ing the rid­er and bike and rebuild­ing the back­ground.

red solo rider - closeup

red solo rid­er — close­up

Assem­bly began with print­ing and cut­ting out six copies of the rid­er. Tabs are attached to the fronts of 5 of the images and the base (shad­ow) is fold­ed for­ward so that it will show when the rid­er group is attached to the card.

all six rider images

all six rid­er images

Here the rid­ers are attached to one anoth­er. I used a strip under the shad­ows to give the bases some­thing to stick to while I was attach­ing all the pieces. I left the strip under the rid­ers because it made glu­ing the bases down in the right spots eas­i­er. (I should have got­ten a pic­ture before I glued it all down!)

Red Solo Rider rider images linked

Red Solo Rid­er rid­er images linked

Here’s the fin­ished pro­to­type.

Red Solo Rider
Red Solo Rid­er

It was a lit­tle con­fus­ing in Mary­hill with every­one switch­ing up the bikes and rid­ers. To the best of my knowl­edge that is Tim Keene on Rolf Vitous’ pret­ty red record hold­ing bike. I’ll ask for the details next time I see Rolf.

I have a num­ber of oth­er pho­tos that I’ll be using over the next cou­ple of weeks.

Clever Packaging

On my way back to my inter­rupt­ed vaca­tion in Oax­a­ca I had the chance to upgrade my DFW to MEX flight to busi­ness class. I *love* busi­ness class. The only thing bet­ter than the leg room is the refuge from the “cheap as we can make it” ethos of coach. Includ­ing this love­ly lit­tle bit of pack­ag­ing that arrived with my sal­ad.

Sit­ting on the side of the (place mat cov­ered, of course) tray was this lit­tle gem.

a sweet little package for salt and pepper

a sweet lit­tle pack­age for salt and pep­per

Pulling at the cutout in the top reveals:

sliding the inner package out

slid­ing the inner pack­age out

Com­plete­ly dis­as­sem­bled the actu­al con­tain­er is obvi­ous­ly noth­ing spe­cial. It’s the sleeve that makes it more.

package disassembled

pack­age dis­as­sem­bled

Note that the man­u­fac­tur­er has also made it very easy to cre­ate these for any­one. Any name or logo can be print­ed on the sleeves. Some clever things could be done with the cutouts for the words and at the top as well.

Oh, and the oth­er thing that rocks Amer­i­can Air­lines busi­ness class — hot roast­ed nuts.

An exhibition of books in Oaxaca

Each time I am in Oax­a­ca I stop into the Casa De La Ciu­dad. There is always some­thing inter­est­ing in the lit­tle sala to the right of the entrance.

When I was last there (Sep­tem­ber 2008) it was the exhi­bi­tion -Los Libres, Los Via­jes, y El Tiem­po (Books, Trav­els, and Time — rough­ly)

los libros, los viajes, y el tiempo

los libros, los via­jes, y el tiem­po

The prob­lem of how to let peo­ple look at/through old­er books is not often solved at all let alone nice­ly.

display column

dis­play col­umn

Here they have scanned/photographed the cov­ers and por­tions of the text from sev­er­al books that tie in with the exhib­it. Then bound them togeth­er and left them out for peo­ple to look at.

not something you're likely to find on display in the USA

not some­thing you would find on dis­play in the USA

These aren’t sophis­ti­cat­ed fac­sim­i­lies. They’re just-good-enough repro­duc­tions that aren’t expect­ed to last beyond the cur­rent exhib­it.

reproduction of the text pages

repro­duc­tion of the text pages

They are scanned and then print­ed sin­gle sided on mat­te pho­to paper and “bound” by being sta­pled at the left mar­gin. The sta­ples are cov­ered by cloth tape.

There was this one that fas­ci­nat­ed Jim — the excerpt was from the anten­nas chap­ter.

an early radio manual from Mexico.

an ear­ly radio man­u­al from Mex­i­co.

This one is fine just for the cov­er illus­tra­tion.

that's quite a cover for a botany book!


This is a great solu­tion to the prob­lem of how to let peo­ple get hands on with books that can’t take the han­dling.

Cheap, tidy, and cer­tain­ly the only way I’ll ever get my hands on Dueno del Mun­do by Julio Verne.

dueno del mundo por julio verne

dueno del mun­do por julio verne

TGIF — Shrine I

After a long time sit­ting on the table in 5 or 6 pieces the Guadalupe/Sirena shrine has final­ly come togeth­er.

I nev­er did find a place for the rose petals.

Shrine I - Guadalupe, Sirena, and the Chicken Boy

Shrine I — Guadalupe, Sire­na, and the Chick­en Boy

A cou­ple of details.

My hand col­ored and glit­tered Vir­gin­si­ta.

detail - guadalupe

detail — guadalupe

The odd­ly appeal­ing Chick­en Boy.

detail - chicken riding boy

detail — chick­en rid­ing boy