First Time Visitor?

Be sure to visit Pop Up Lessons/How To Books

to review the basic techniques of pop up making.

Fun and Fresh Books & Craft Supplies

Sep 26, 2014

Sliceform Lattice Pumpkin Update

This pumpkin sliceform folds flat!

Updated template re-posted with full file set :
  Silhouette Studio, SVG, PDF, DXF

Extreme Cards and Papercrafting: pop up cards, movable and mechanical cards, digital crafts and unusual papercrafts.

Sep 24, 2014

Falling Leaves Spiral Card

I like the idea of spiral pop up cards, but sometimes the design gets a bit awkward looking as the loops get bigger.  My spiral pop up card features both an "invisible" acetate spiral, and a spiral that doubles back on itself to make it a bit more compact. 

(Wow, shiny paper is hard to photograph, isn't it?)

During the summer I made a butterfly spiral card like this which I gave away without blogging it, or even photographing it. WHAT was I thinking?

I finally got around to making an autumn design using the same spiral.  

How to make a falling leaves spiral card

card stock for leaf skeletons
double sided paper for leaf inserts 
heavy weight acetate for spiral
11" x 5" card stock for base card, and decorative elements as desired
low tack tape ("painter's tape")

Download cutting file: PDF, SVG (how to use my designs in Cricut Design Studio), Silhouette Studio, DXF.

Files download for free; pay what you wish.  Suggested amount for this design: $1.99.


Cut spiral from heavy acetate.  I used a piece salvaged from an old spiral bound report.  Overhead transparency is probably not thick enough.  You want the kind that you would make clear cards from ("clear cardstock").

Cut leaf skeletons and inserts. Remember to cut 2 skeletons for each leaf (front and back).  I used regular cardstock for the skeletons and Shimmer Sheetz for the inserts.

(Side question: does anyone have advice on a good adhesive for adhering the tiny cardstock frames to the Shimmer Sheetz?  I used Elmer's Glue Pen and it oozed all over the place.)

Glue skeletons and inserts together into sandwiches.  Let dry.

Cut base card.  Mine is 11" x 5".  Decorate the inside of your card base as desired.

Now for the fiddly part!

Using low tack tape, adhere one end of the spiral to the inside of the card.  Apply tape to the other end, closing the card to adhere.  Now open the card.  Check the placement and adjust until you're satisfied.  This took me a long, long time! 

Once you have the spiral in place, temporarily tape the leaves onto the spiral until you like what you see.  I like to start by settling in the end pieces, and covering the center where the spiral doubles back.  Then fill in.  (Be sure everything is hidden when you close the card, and the leaves float freely when the card is open.)


Using permanent adhesive, adhere one end of the spiral.  I like glue dots (cut down to fit the spiral) for this, but beware, they're once and done. 

Detach the tape from the other end of the spiral, allowing the spiral to flatten.  Place a glue dot on this end of the spiral.  Close the card to adhere.  (This is called allowing the pop up to "find its own place".  It ensures that the pop up will close!)

In the next photo you can see the two ends of the spiral adhered to the card.  One full glue dot is under the circle of acetate on the right-hand end.  A strip cut from a glue dot adheres the left-hand end.

Open the card.  Untape the leaves, one at a time, and adhere permanently.  I used 1/2 of a glue dot on each, trying to place them in inconspicuous spots.  You can barely see the adhesive on the oak leaf in the photo below.


Extreme Cards and Papercrafting: pop up cards, movable and mechanical cards, digital crafts and unusual papercrafts.

Sep 6, 2014

Stained Glass Window Card

Creativity sure took a back seat this summer.  My crafting space is almost completely taken over by a new computer (waiting for everything to be transferred from the old one), a scanner, and a printer.  All summer I kept thinking I would shove things out of the way and make something, but it didn't happen.

Of course, the one birthday card I did make, I never photographed!

Finally, younger child and all her belongings went back to college and I was able to unearth a book of Impressionist paintings and cut it up for cards.

 window card fribtstained glass window card

These window cards are a simple idea with a surprisingly effective stained glass look.

For hand or machine cutting.

The 3 diamonds can run across the bottom, or the top.

How to make a window card with stained-glass-look inset

Download window template file (PDF, SVG, Silhouette Studio, DXF).

template download


Files download for free; pay what you wish. Suggested contribution for this file is $ 1.00

Print a copy of the cut file and trace it onto clear plastic.  (I used a piece of acetate from an old report cover).  Be sure you are using the correct template ("hand cutting" or "machine cutting").

Cut around the outside edge of the window to make a "viewing template."

acetate for choosing picture

Lay the viewing template on your picture until you like what you see in the panes.

Here are some choices for this picture.

cutting alternates

choosing picture

acetate template

Once you like what you see, lightly mark the outside edge of the window template.  Green outline would be the hand-cutting cut line.  Blue outline would be the machine cutting cut line. (Your marks will not be this obvious, of course!)

cutting diagram

Hand Cutting

Use the printout of the file.

Carefully cut out the panes and use them as templates to cut picture.

Cut diamond-shaped panes from a contrasting portion of the picture.

Machine Cutting

Adhere the picture to your cutting mat, aligning the right and bottom cut edges with the 8" vertical and 8" horizontal lines printed on the cutting mat. 

mat placement

In your cutting software, position the bottom right-hand corner of the cut file at the intersection of the  7" horizontal and the 7" vertical of the virtual mat.  Cut. 

Silhouette cameo mat placement

The diamond panes are cut separately.  I just hand cut them rather than fussing with placement on the mat but it's up to you.  Choose a contrasting part of the picture for the diamonds.

Finishing the card

Fold a piece of black cardstock in half.  Begin assembling the card at the top fold.  I work left to right, top to bottom.  Usually I just eyeball the placement of each piece and then trim off the excess card.

If you prefer, use the gluing frame from the bottom of the page you printed.  Cut out the panes.  Lay the frame on your folded card, aligning top fold of card and top of guide.   Glue the pieces into the cutout windows.   Remove the gluing guide.

card front

Extreme Cards and Papercrafting: pop up cards, movable and mechanical cards, digital crafts and unusual papercrafts.

Jul 15, 2014

Cupcake Sliceform

Sliceform cupcake that folds flat.  When opened up to 3D it is the size of a standard (real) cupcake and fits into a decorative cupcake wrapper.

finished slice form cupcake

How to make a sliceform cupcake and wrapper

All files download for free.

However, freewill contributions for files gratefully accepted.
(Suggested amount for this design: $1.99)

Download file set: Silhouette Studio, DXF, PDF, SVG (how to use my SVG files in Cricut Design Space)

The SVG has an 8.5" x 11" rectangle around the pieces to assist with sizing.  (Sliceforms do not scale well as it throws off the width of the slots.)  Once you size your file you can delete the rectangle.

Cut pieces.  Color as desired.

cut pieces for sliceform cupcake

Begin assembly with the medium size pieces.  There are two different slot configurations on the medium pieces.  Select one each of the two different pieces. Slot together using the 2nd slots in from the outside edge.

slotting middle pieces

Add the other two pieces.

slotting middle pieces

Add the larger piece that does not have a stem on the cherry. Slide it into the center slots of the medium pieces that are open at the very top (no tabs across the top of the slots).

adding the larger pieces

Add the other large piece, sliding it into the center slot of the other large piece and the other two medium pieces.  Push the tabs on the medium pieces out of the way as you slide the large piece in.  When the large piece is pushed down all the way, the tabs fit into the small notches at the top of the large piece.

tabs on medium piece

Add the four smallest pieces.  First slide the center slot of the smallest piece onto the outer slot of a large piece.  Twist the smallest piece to the left to catch the outer slot of one medium piece, then to the right to catch the other slot.

Wrap the decorative cupcake wrapper around the base of the cupcake and adhere the ends together.

Extreme Cards and Papercrafting: pop up cards, movable and mechanical cards, digital crafts and unusual papercrafts.

Jul 5, 2014

Heart Background Thank You Card

A variation on a star card I originally saw on Seaside Creativity, which in turn was inspired by a die-cut card by Debbie Olson.  

heart background cut file valentine card
Probably not the best file for hand cutting, but easy with a machine!

How to make the Heart Background Card

Download file set: Silhouette Studio, SVG (How to use my SVG files in Cricut Design Space), DXF, PDF.

Cut pieces as desired.  I have given you "full" and a "partial" heart background.  I used the one of the right as I was using a band across the card.  For the big blue and pink hearts I cut the large heart heart pattern at 100% for the blue one and reduced it to 70% for the pink one. 

heart background thank you or valentine

Back the hearts with patterned paper. 

Adhere to base card: I cut my heart background to measure 5" wide x 6" tall.  This fits perfectly on 8.5" x 11" paper, landscape, trimmed to 6.5" height. Folded in half for your card will be 5.5" wide x 6.5" tall.

Extreme Cards and Papercrafting: pop up cards, movable and mechanical cards, digital crafts and unusual papercrafts.

Jun 28, 2014

Teapot and Cup Pop Up Card

Pop up card of a teapot pouring tea into a cup.  Can be hand cut if you're dexterous.

teapot and cup pop up card open

How to make the teapot and cup pop up card

Download cutting file set: PDF, SVG (how to use my SVG files in Cricut Design Space), DXF, Silhouette Studio.

Freewill contributions for files gratefully accepted.
(Suggested amount for this design: $1.99)

Cut on black lines.  Save the cutouts from the steam.

Score on red lines.

diagram of tea pop up card

Add a sentiment to the separate rectangle before or after cutting (mine is blank).

Insert sentiment rectangle into curved cuts.

Crease on scored lines.  The center fold, cup handle and teapot handle-to-base are valley folds.  The tiny crease on the tea pouring from the spout is a mountain fold.

close up view teapot

Glue cut piece into backing card, then glue steam cutouts in place on the backing card.

close up view tea cup pop up

And a giveaway  from Kiri-Card Creations!
Win this card, or another of your choice.
See card choices on Facebook.

Extreme Cards and Papercrafting: pop up cards, movable and mechanical cards, digital crafts and unusual papercrafts.

Jun 13, 2014

Cake Slice Pop Up Card

This origamic architecture  pop up card of a slice of cake can be made in white; or in any colors you choose, as a print and cut.

slice of cake pop up card open

Relatively easy to hand cut if you don't have a cutting machine!

How to make a cake slice pop up card

Freewill contributions for files gratefully accepted.
(Suggested amount for this design: $1.99)

slice of cake pop up card pattern
numerals for cake slice pop up card

Download cutting files: pdf, svg (can be used with Cricut Design Space), dxf, Silhouette Studio.
 Adjust colors as desired, or select and delete the color-filled objects for a more traditional all-white origamic architecture look.

The Silhouette Studio file already has registration marks.

Cut numerals as desired.  If you are using a single digit, delete one set numeral slots and move the other set horizontally to be centered on the cake slice.

Crease at top and bottom of each numeral, and across the strut as indicated by red lines.

Cut and score the cake.  Cut vertical lines, score horizontal lines.  Cut the horizontal slots for the numeral pieces.

Folding Hints

From the back of the card, pinch along the two horizontal scored lines on either side of the cake piece.  This prefolds the crease that will form the center fold line of the card.

Pinch along the long top crease.

With the card partially folded shut, and working from the back, start pushing the little slices forward.  Encourage the card to collapse, pushing each little section to coax each crease to fold.

Open the card to 90° and insert the numeral tabs into the slots.  Tape or glue the tabs to the back of the card.

slice of cake pop up card numeral slots

Leaving the card open to 90°, dry fit it into a backing card.  Identify the parts of the card that touch the backing, and those that do not.

See this post for more information about gluing this kind of card into a backing.

Spread glue on the back of the card, around the edges of the folded part, on the parts of the card that touched the backing when the card was at 90 degrees.  No glue should be on the back of the colored parts that pop forward to form the cake slice.

Insert the card into the backing and adhere.

Answering Lynne's question from the comment section: here the card is open 90° and placed with the left side of the card on a table.  You are looking down on it. (Under the card is a piece of white paper, under the white paper is the black table surface.)  The sides of the cake are made up of a series of slats that you can see through when the card is sideways.

I made a quilt square front from a variety of origami papers, some of which I ran through my embosser.

origami paper quilt collage card front

Extreme Cards and Papercrafting: pop up cards, movable and mechanical cards, digital crafts and unusual papercrafts.