Robert Sabuda notably changed how many people looked at pop-up books with his design for The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. How does one piece of paper turn into an object that moves? He set a paper tornado in motion, created an Emerald City, and made the balloon rise at the end. Pop-ups are magical. But they take time and patience to make. Carol Barton and Dorothy Yule are full-on advanced bookmakers who employ the magic of pop-ups. I'm still on the very beginner level, but I do like to brave learning a new form now and then. Looking through the incredible book Elements of Pop Up, (by David Carter and James Diaz) which has excellent physical examples to examine, but does not have step-by-step instructions, I thought this cube looked like a little gift. For you. Some instructions. And a template you can download here.
Materials: 2 pieces of card stock, 8 1/2" x 11" (grained long): one for the support paper, one for the cube and tube post. You can access a template here. Or create your own in Illustrator: this cube is 2" square with 1/2" tabs on the cube and 1/4" tabs on the tube post.
Tools: scissors or X-Acto knife and cutting mat; bone folder (optional but useful); PVA glue and tiny brush or piece of board to use for applying glue
1. Cut out the cube and the tube post armature (a). Fold all pieces on the lines indicated.
2. Fold the tube post in half lengthwise, to make it longer and narrower. Glue it to itself to make it double thick. Fold up the tabs at the ends, both valley folds.
4. Glue top tab (b) down to inner wall (B).
5. Glue tab (c) around to other end of box (C) to complete the cube.
6. Fold the support paper in half. Center the box on the support paper, lining up the valley fold of the top with the valley fold in the support paper. It will be at a 45 degree angle.
7. Apply glue to the other end of the tube post (a) and to the box tab adjacent to it. Press them into place on the support paper. You can press down on the box top to adjust the tube post.
8. Apply glue to the remaining box tab. Close the support paper. Hold down until completely dry. Note: Although many of the photos here are from different angles, the tabs are glued at the bottom of the page, the open side of the top is at the top.
Shown in this photo: bottom is right.
A continuous image was used here:
a strip cropped from one photo,
and a separate square cropped from another.
A repeating image for the sides, a second image for the top.
Cropped from a photo of some painted paper I made for this post. I added "ribbons" in Illustrator. Later sewed a bow of linen thread onto the top. A thin ribbon might work, too.
It's a simple pop-up, but still, like everything else, it takes practice.