Red Rooms: A model accordion book for teaching

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Made this little accordion book in a few hours yesterday, because I wanted to give my bookbinding students ideas for their own. What fun! I haven’t been able to open up and play with my own work the way I did when I made this…a reminder to not take anything too seriously, and treat everything as though it were just a playful model for something grander.

My first meeting with the new class is tonight, and I’m nervous, as usual…don’t know why, every class has been wonderful, so far, and past students have always enjoyed themselves. Better scared and prepared, than overconfident and careless, I guess. Many of my students went on to bind more books at home, and I am now thinking of doing a follow-up class of more difficult bindings, as well as some fancy-shmancy techniques, that we didn’t have time for in the Introduction to Bookbinding.

Folding an Accordion Book
These steps are for folding half of your paper strip; to finish the book, turn it over and repeat steps 2-7 with the other half of the strip.

Into one valley of the accordion, I stitched a 6-page pamphlet made from old magazine pages:

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I painted up a page of the accordion book (left) with acrylics and glitter paint (on the right is the first page of the pamphlet, from a torn-up Le Gun magazine):

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A very basic pop-up, using a postcard from Phaidon’s Art Box:

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(From left to right)

A felt heart stitched directly onto a page of the accordion, with rubberstamped borders…

A red “snowflake” wall sticker and an artist’s stamp (scan of my work…reduced, printed onto photo paper, and cut with wavy craft scissors) mounted on a smaller piece of foam board…

An “envelope” of red silk dupion, pamphlet stitched into a valley fold…

An old yellow and orange lino print attached to a page of the book by making diagonal cuts in the black paper and sliding the corners of the print into these cuts.

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Played with the pamphlet of Le Gun magazine pages, too, by cutting windows in the pages and adding my own paint and doodles to the illustrations…

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A pocket made from some junk mail holds a painted-up paper tag; more rubberstamping and wall stickers fill the empty spaces between one page and the next…

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Some upholstery fabric from my stash makes a quick front covering material over pieces of thin book board…nothing flash, just something to get the class thinking of ways they can jazz up and use the accordion books they’ve made.

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♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

5 thoughts on “Red Rooms: A model accordion book for teaching

  1. That’s a really gorgeous book, Nat! I love all the little found-and-converted pieces, especially the window in the pamphlet idea. 🙂


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