Literary Origami – Well, That’s a HOOT!

OWL book folding, OWL quotes and OWL jokes! Read on!

Book Folding – I’ve done two Owl books. The first one is a stylized ‘HOO’.

This is the pattern I used for the ‘HOO’ book. In retrospect, I think I would use more pages to make the letters ‘H’ and ‘O’ and fewer pages to make the owl.

I am both a night owl and an early bird. So I am wise and I have worms.
– Steve Carell –

You can’t hoot with the owls and then soar with the eagles
– Hubert H. Humphrey –

For my second owl book, I made just the owl and added some ‘fringe flower’ eyes and ‘paper curl’ ear tufts and wings.

The Owl pattern

I have learned that one of the most important rules in politics is poise – which means looking like an owl after you have behaved like a jackass.
– Ronald Reagan –

The wife and I dressed as the iconic Peruvian owls for Halloween.
We were Inca hoots.
– Author Unknown –

A devoutly religious cowboy lost his favorite book of scripture while out mending fences one day.
A few weeks later, an owl walked up to him carrying the scripture book in its beak.
The cowboy couldn’t believe what was happening. He took his precious book from the owl’s beak and raised his eyes to the heavens.
He said, “It’s a miracle!”
“Not really,” said the owl. “Your name is written inside the cover.”
– Author Unknown –

These are my other Folded Books:

Literary Origami – The Dark Side of Book Folding

I folded this book into a Skull for my daughter – for Halloween. I should have used a thicker book and made some cross bones too.

I live inside your face.
– Author Unknown –

Why is the human skull as dense as it is? Nowadays we can send a message around the world in one-seventh of a second, but it takes years to drive an idea through a quarter-inch of human skull.
– Charles Kettering –

I folded this book into a Gothy figure (for the same daughter) – for Christmas. I was going to embroider some dark skulls to decorate the cape and body, but that was going to take more time than I had. Instead, The Car Guy made some black epoxy resin snowflakes!

I had choosen the path of the black sheep rather than that of the unicorns and puppies.
– Magenta Periwinkle, Cutting Class –

I turned my bedroom into a bat-cave of band posters, dark curtains, and the occasional skull. I think by now my distraught parents were seeking advice from their pastor. Andy, meanwhile, calmly remarked, “I like how you’ve found a way to use Halloween decorations year-round.”
– Molly Ringle, All the Better Part of Me –

The Daughter loved both books – she is a nurse. If you have a nurse in your family, you know that their interests, stories and sense of humour can sometimes be – different.

Or maybe it is day shift explaining to night shift… either way, it was probably a ‘shit’ show, as they say.

If you know a nurse or a doctor or a person who works in a medical facility, be sure to let them know that you appreciate what they do! And when they get to telling you the story about the patient who… well, I won’t go there. So just listen and nod and smile, like they do, when you talk about gardening or other such things that don’t involve body parts and fluids.

Literary Origami – Book Folding the Letter ‘M’ and Fringe Flowers

The Marvelous letter ‘M’ at work:
My mother makes a mouthwatering mincemeat muffin.
Most monsters make messes.
Many merry maids milked many moody milk cows.

How many ‘M’s can you use in one sentence?

The Letter M – one row up, one row down, one row up, one row down!
The Letter M with curls and flowers

Directions:

Height of book: 9 inches
Number of pages used: 234 Pages (117 leaves)

First 12 folds:   1.5 inches from bottom
Row 1:   24 folds starting at bottom; first fold 1.5 inches from bottom; remaining folds .25 inches from each previous fold
Row 2:   23 folds starting at top; first fold .25 inches closer to bottom than last folds in Row 1; remaining folds .25 inches from previous fold
Row 3:   23 folds starting at bottom; first fold 1.5 inches from bottom; remaining folds .25 inches from previous fold
Row 4:   23 folds starting at top; first fold .25 inches closer to bottom than last fold in Row 1
Last 12 folds:   1.5 inches from bottom

Fringe Flowers:

There are quite a few web sites with instructions for fringe flowers. This is one of them: Exotic Fringed Flowers.

 

Literary Origami – As the Month Unfolded I Folded Easy Angles

We’re at the Bland Beige House in Arizona now. The weather here has been much better than Alberta – where the temperatures turned brutally cold soon after we headed south.

I haven’t been feeling at my best for a few months – interesting how life can throw you a medical curve ball and recovery takes more time and effort just because you are older!

The up side of feeling down is it gives you more ‘down time’. I spent some of it folding this book, which is the easiest book fold project I’ve done so far. I call it Easy Angles.

I ‘spruced it up’ by adding a black paper background on the two end pages, and some curls (See ‘How to make curly hair’ at Book Fold Angel.)

Instructions:
1. My book was 9 inches high. (22.8 cm) I used 176 pages, which is 88 book leaves.

2. The design consists of 4 ‘rows’. Each row takes 22 leaves.

3.The first fold (bottom fold) in each row is 1.75 inches (4.5 cm) from the bottom of the page.

4. The second fold in each row is 2 inches from the bottom of the page. (If you prefer to work in metric, pick a nice round number for each dimension.)

5. The third fold in each row is 2.25 inches from the bottom of the page.

6. Continue in .25 inch increments for the 22 folds.

7. When you have completed the 22 folds of the first row, start the second row… then the third, and then the last row.

8. If you want more rows than 4, then you either need a book with more pages or…
you could make fewer than 22 folds per row.

9. If your book is less than 9 inches high, you can either make fewer folds per row or…
you could make make each fold less than .25 inches from the previous fold.

Easy Peasy, right!

Do you know where ‘Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy’ comes from? In a 1970’s British TV commercial for Lemon Squeezy detergent, a little girl and an adult use Lemon Squeezy detergent to clean a stack of dishes quickly. At the end of the commercial the girl says “Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy”.

My Other Book Folding Posts:

Book Folding – Literary Origami

Book Folding 101

Folded Book Angel

Book Fold Angel – Decorated

Book Folding 202 – A Paw Print

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Literary Origami – Book Folding 202 A Paw Print

The following is my attempt to further explain Book Folding. I say attempt, because writing instructions is actually quite difficult. I have a new found appreciation for people who write manuals…

Paw Print

The Basics of Book Folding are covered in this post: Book Folding 101. Here is a video that will help you visualize what I explained in that post and what I am explaining below: DIY Marta. Though Marta isn’t the greatest at making videos, she is a big help in understanding what the process is. (I don’t do everything just like she does – but close enough.)

Moving on. In Book Folding 202, I’ll tell you how you use a printed Paw Print design. (If you have never folded a book before, use a practice book to test to see if you are on the right track…

1. Here is the pattern for the the Paw Print. If you right click on the image you can download it. Save it as a .jpg file and print it full size on an 8.5X11 sheet of paper. This should give you a paw print that is about 4 inches high.

2. If you use the pattern as printed, you will need a book that is  about 8 inches high and has at least 200 numbered pages, which gives you 100 leaves of paper. (1 sheet or leaf of paper has two numbered pages.)

3. Each line on the pattern represents one leaf of the book (two numbered pages) – but only where there is one element, like the left and right toes where there isn’t a second element (the foot pad) below it.

4. Where there are two elements (the toe and the foot pad), you will use two leaves per line on the pattern.

So, although this paw print pattern looks like it only needs 60 leaves, you are actually going to need a book with at least 99 leaves (200 pages). The top element is always folded on one leaf, the bottom element is folded on the next leaf.

Fold Line at the top of the pattern. Elements of the pattern: four toes and the foot pad.

5. Once you decide how the paw print will be positioned on the page (lets say the top of the paw is 2 inches down from the top of the book), then you will fold the paper pattern on a fold line that is 2 inches above the top of the paw print (see ‘Fold Line’ above). You will align this fold line with the top of each leaf of the book.

In the photo below, you can see how the pattern was folded on the fold line. The folded over piece of the pattern creates a ledge that makes it easy to align the pattern on every page.

 

6. The photo above shows the pattern if you were at about the half way point of folding. You can see that the toe and the foot pad are both shown on a single line of the pattern.

7. The toe element will be made with two folds on one leaf – from points #1 and #2. The foot pad will be folded on the next leaf from points #3 and #4. (The top element is always folded first.)

8. You can either make the folds directly from the pattern, or you can make pencil marks on each leaf, remove the pattern, then fold. Either method works. Put a tick mark on the pattern to show what you have finished folding or marking.

9. Folding always starts at the front of the book, but there will probably be some unfolded pages at the beginning and end of the book. So, to find the first leaf you will need to:
a. find the middle of the book.
b. take the number of leaves that you need (99), divided by 2 which gives you 50 leaves. Count back 50 leaves from the middle of the book to the front of the book. That will give you your starting point.

Clear as mud?

Literary Origami – Book Fold Angel Decorated

The Book Fold Angel is finished. I added curly paper hair, a halo, and a ribbon around the neck.

How to Make the Curly Hair

A paper strip with three lines of print and a gluing tab on the right side. When the paper is curled there will be three curly locks!

I used two book pages to make the hair. I trimmed the margins off of the top, bottom and one side of the page, and left a small margin on the other side (for gluing.)

Then I cut between the lines, leaving the gluing tab uncut until I got to the third line. Then I cut through the gluing tab too. This gave me strips with three lines of print to each strip.

I used scissors to curl each line, just like you do with curling ribbon. This gave me three curls per strip.

I folded the gluing tab so it was at a 90 degree angle to the curly bits. Then I glued the tabs to the head of the angel (used a glue gun).

The Halo

The halo was a plastic ring that I wrapped in ribbon. I glued a toothpick to the ring, then stuck the toothpick into the head after the hair was finished.

OOPS!

If you want the hair to match the colour of the Angel, use pages from the Angel book. I didn’t do that, unfortunately. I used a different book. My first batch of hair was much whiter in colour – and I didn’t really appreciate the effect that had until after I had glued some of the hair on. For the second batch of hair, I used a page from a book that had slightly yellower pages. When I mixed that hair in with the white hair, it all kind of evened out. Sort of… Over time, I expect the whiter hair will turn yellow too.

I’ve learned that mistakes can often be as good a teacher as success.
– Jack Welch –

Book Folding Directions

Here is the ‘how to’ folding post: Literary Origami – Book Fold Angel.

Here is the ‘how to’ for book folding in general: Book Folding 101.

Literary Origami – Folded Book Angel

Folded Book Angel

This is one of the easiest Book Fold Projects I’ve found so far. If you would like to try it, the instructions are below. (Be sure to read the Book Folding 101 post first if you have never folded a book.)

1.  The book – mine was almost 180 pages long (90 leaves). If your book has more leaves you will get a ‘denser’ body.

The first six leaves formed the left wing. The last six leaves were the right wing.

2. I used six page leaves for each wing. All the rest of the page leaves were for the body. You can see that the folds on the left wing were made on the other side of the leaf than all the folds for the body and the right wing.

3. This is how the book looked when I was working on it. The top of the book was on my right.  I used a dark piece of cardstock to help make straight folds. I used the stick to make the folds crisper.

4. Side Page Marks for the left wing (front of the book). Measurements are in inches. You may want to vary these to achieve a different look. If you want to work in metric, .5 inches is equal to 1.27 cm – so you will probably want to do some rounding…

First page:   .5 inches from the top of the book.
Second page:   1 inch from the top of the book.
Third page:   1.5 inch from the top of the book.
Fourth page:   2 inches from the top of the book.
Fifth page:   2.5 inches from the top of the book.
Sixth page:   3 inches from the top of the book.

5. The Angel body. My side page mark was 1.25 inches from the bottom of every page.

6. When I had only six pages left in the book, I did the right wing. The marks on these pages were done in the reverse order of the front wing – so I started with the mark that was 3 inches from the top of the page and ended with the mark that was .5 inches from the top.

7. The head – I stuck a styrofoam ball onto a thin wood skewer. The skewer was off centre.
– I carefully cut one of the ‘body pages’ out of the book with an exacto knife and tore it into suitable size pieces.
– I dipped each torn piece into white glue mixed with water (about 4 parts water to one part glue – and you don’t need very much of it!)
– Then I molded each paper piece onto the ball. When it was dry, I did a second layer where needed.
– When everything was dry, I slid the skewer down the spine of the book.

8. Decorating the Angel – I haven’t done that yet!

Literary Origami – Book Folding 101

Angel Book: Hard cover book stands on its own; top view – the folds all begin at the same place along the top of the book. The same is true for the bottom.

Before I show you how to make a Folded Book Angel – there are a few things you need to know first:

1. Book Folding is kind of a free-form craft. There are a few techniques, however, that make it easier!  If you have never folded a book before, then start with a sacrificial book that you can test on!

2. A few book terms – so that we are all on the same page, as it were. Book pages  are printed two to a book leaf.  The words ‘page’ and ‘leaf’ are NOT interchangeable – if the pattern you choose says you need 200 leaves, you need to use a book with at least 400 pages…

3. Equipment: top left: the ‘toaster tongs’ that my father in law made out of clothes pegs; bottom right, l-r: black cardstock strip, creaser tool, ruler, pencil

Also, choose a hard cover book so that the book will stand up on its own. You might want a book with cleanly cut page edges, not rough cut ones – though there might be patterns that would look good with rough edges.

3. Equipment: Besides the book, you will need
a ruler;
a pencil;
– a strip of cardstock that is about 2 inches by 10 inches (5cm by 25 cm),
– a couple of clothespegs to hold the book open when it would prefer to be closed. I use  some ‘toaster tongs’ that my father-in-law made with two clothespegs (side by side) sandwiched by two strips of wood.)
– a creaser tool to make the folds crisper than your fingernail can make them. People who do a lot of book folding buy a tool called a bone folder. You could also use the rounded back of a spoon. I use a pointy stick that is slightly convex from side to side. (A remnant from pottery making days.)

4. The Dangerous Part: The pencil mark and scored line on the top end of the book.

4. The Dangerous Part – Marking the fold marks on the top and bottom of the pages. You do this so that all your folds begin at the same place on the top or bottom of the book. I do this by Measuring, Marking and scoring. You’ll need a pencil and exacto knife or a regular knife to do this. (Knives – the dangerous bit)

With the book partly closed, stand it on its top covers.  You are going to create a scored line across all the pages. Measure about 3/4 inch (2 cm) from the spine and draw a line like you see in the photo. Using the ruler and an exacto knife or a regular knife, score the line so that you can see the score on each page when the book is flat and open. (It is very difficult to do a nice fold if that top mark is too close to the spine!)

You will do this to both the top and the bottom of the book.

If you don’t want do this step, then you can devise some other way to line up your folds so that they are consistent across the top and bottom of the book.

5. Turn the book so that the top of the book is on your right and the spine is at the top of your work surface. You should be able to faintly see the marks you made on the top and bottom of the book. You’ll make another mark on the side of the page. In this case, for the angel, I made a mark 1.25 inches (3 cm) from the bottom of the book.

Top on the right. Spine at the top of the work surface. The mark on the top and bottom of the book are the ones you scored with the blade of a knife. The mark on the side of the page is, in this case, 1.25 inches (3 cm) from the bottom of the page.

6. Most folds begin (or end if you prefer) from a mark on the top of the page (or bottom of the page) to a mark on the side of the page. A cardstock strip is a handy tool for making straight folds. Align the cardstock so it touches the top of the page mark and the side page mark.

One fold is made from the mark on the top of the page to the mark on the side of the page. The second fold is from the mark on the bottom of the page to the mark on the side of the page. Align the marks along the piece of cardstock.

7. Hold the cardstock securely in place with one hand and use the other hand to fold the page along the cardstock. Press with your finger. This fold made a nice triangle, but it caused the page to overlap the previous page. A second small fold corrects the overlapping situation.

Small fold.

8. Your last fold goes from the bottom page mark to the side page mark.

The last fold.

 

9. When you are done, use your crease folding tool to make everything crisp.

Make the folds crisp.

10. For some projects, you will have two marks on the side of the page.

The two folds when there are two marks on the side of the page.

11. When you aren’t working on your book, close it and store it under a stack of two or three heavy books. That will help to compress the folded pages.

That is the basics. Other posts in this series:

Literary Origami – Heart and Cat
Literary Origami – Folded Book Angel
Book Fold Angel Decorated
Literary Origami – Book Folding 202 – A Paw Print
As the Month Unfolded – I Folded Easy Angles
Book Folding – the Letter ‘M’ and Fringe Flowers
The Dark Side of Book Folding

Literary Origami – Book Folding Heart and Cat

Do you fold down a corner of a book page (dog-ear) to mark you place? I can’t bring myself to do that – maybe because I have so many cool book marks! Or maybe it is just a lifelong habit – I suppose a hold over from a time when books were less available and more valuable – handed down for the next generation to read and enjoy.

You can imagine, then, my initial horror at seeing a whole book of folded pages!

But the result was so wonderful! I saw this folded book this past August at the Hospice where my dad spent his last days. “Peace” – it was an appropriate sentiment in that caring environment.

The Craft of Book Folding has been around for quite a few years, even if it was brand new to me. I soon realized, too, that the number of books that end up in land fills makes Book Folding a very desirable way of recycling books. I made several trips to our local recycling center and selected a book for my first project – a Heart. When that heart went home with a friend, I made another Heart!

After the two Hearts, I moved on the a more difficult pattern – “Cat” (C Pawprint t.)

 

Other than the book itself, Book Folding equipment is quite simple – a ruler, a pencil, a bone folder tool, a few pieces of cardstock, and some big clips. The most challenging aspect were the patterns. (There are some free patterns on the internet.) I chose to make my own patterns, using a template that I made in Microsoft Excel.

There are many excellent YouTube videos and websites that give detailed instructions. I waded through a few of them until I understood the basics and found some techniques that worked best for me.

The pattern I’m working on now is a Wine Glass. I’m not really pleased with it so far, but it might look much better when it is done…

Goodreads conducted a poll on how people keep track of their place in a book. Thousands and thousands of people responded. The most popular choice was a  scrap of paper or some sort of bookmark. Almost 9% dog-ear the page. How do you mark your place?