Monday, December 12, 2011

A Simple Pop-Up Accordion Card

Wandering around the fine arts building at San Francisco State University, I discovered a glass case with previous exhibition catalogues inside. A folded one caught my eye. It was for a 2004 show called "2 1/2: Art at the Corner of Two and Three Dimensions." The concept for the design fit perfectly, the card was simple, yet felt animated. It looked like it would make a nice card for other events as well, although without the terrific conceptual connection. So, let's make one.

Materials: Use a paper that is 8 1/2" x 11" or A4 (either: cut in half, lengthwise). For digital design, plan to print two cards on one piece of cardstock (each approximately 4 1/4" x 11," or 105 mm x 297 mm for A4). Note: Plan your design so you can trim to 3 3/8" x 10." Many printers will not print to the edges and this will ensure the pictures will bleed off the edges: top, bottom, and sides, like the example.
Tools: pencil, bone folder, art knife and metal ruler and cutting mat, academic divider (optional, for creating five equal sections)
Example: The steps shown below create a five-panel card that is 3 3/8" x 2" (79 mm x 51 mm) when all folded up or 3 3/8" x 10" (79 mm x 254 mm) completely open.

Arrange the paper horizontally.

Divide and mark paper into five equal sections along the long side, top and bottom (that will be four marks).

Drawing down with the bone folder against the ruler, press into the paper to make a score that connects each set of top and bottom marks.

Start with a valley fold. Then fold the next section back on itself; continue alternating valleys and mountains along the scores.

Mark and make one horizontal slit (approximately 2" or 50 mm, centered across the fold): one across the first mountain fold (#2 of 5 folds), one across the second valley fold (#3/5). Note: if you change the scale, the slits should be the width of one of the panels.

Mark 1" or 25 mm on either side of the folds and at the edge of the paper. Make two scores with the bone folder, connecting the ends of the cut slit to the marks at the edge of the paper. Repeat for the second cut section.

Fold along the new scores: mountain folds for the first section, valley folds for the second section.
Refold the center of the first section so that where it was once a mountain fold, now it is a valley fold.
Refold the center of the second section so that where it was once a valley fold, now it is a mountain fold.
Fold up the card, slip it into an envelope, put a stamp on it, and mail it.

    1 comment:

    Anonymous said...

    What a great little card! Thanks for showing us how to put this together!!!