Endless Accordion

October 4, 2015


I’m once again revisiting accordions and number lines, because they are both  infinity fun. What I’ve attempted to do here is to create a classroom friendly accordion book whose pages are pockets which can contain changing content, in this case a variety of number lines.

What makes this project classroom friendly is that it is designed to be used with a ubiquitous material: standard sized, standard weight copy paper. It requires a few simple folds, and very few materials. I’ve made templates that can be printed out, but lacking the resource of a copy machine, this can all be easily constructed without my templates.

Endless accordion with pockets.

Endless accordion with pockets.

The accordion is made from units of full-size sheets of paper, folded, then attached together. For the basic number line I recommend using 6 papers, which will result in 12 pockets. Since zero through 10 needs 11 pockets, the extra pocket at the end conveniently implies “dot dot dot …. on and on …to be continued. ”

The shows where the fold lines occur.

The shows where the fold lines occur.

A full sheet of 8.5″ x 11″ (or A4) is folded so it ends up looking like the picture below:

Two pockets from one sheet of paper

Two pockets from one sheet of paper

The tabs at the side are there to create an attachment surface for other the next pockets.


Attaching pockets together

The tabs of adjoining papers can be attached with glue, tape, sewing, paper fasteners, staples or paper clips. I ch0ose paper clips.

One piece of paper, folded, has room for four numbers

One piece of paper, folded, has room for four numbers

The cards with the numbers are also made from sheets of uncut, folded paper. They are folded so that they are just a bit narrower than the pockets.  Once they’ve been folded they can be glued (or taped etc) shut but I don’t bother doing this, as they seem to stay together just fine without gluing.

Counting by 10's

Counting by 10’s

One set of numbers can make four different number lines.

Counting by ones

Counting by ones

I’m providing links to PDF’s. There’s a PDF for the pocket, which I recommend that you make 6 copies of. This template is in black and white only. I hand colored in the dividing lines.

As for the numbers, I have one full color PDF here, and one that has the black and white outlines of the numbers if you prefer to let have your students color in the numbers themselves. At the moment I only have files for paper measured in inches, but in the next day or two I will update with A4 versions as well.

template for pocket

template for pocket

PDF 8.5 x 11 for accordion pockets lines

numbers color accordion pocket screen shot

Numbers in color

PDF 8.5 x 11 accordion number line, colored numbers

Number to color in yourselves

Number to color in yourselves

PDF  8.5 x 1 blank numbers number line for accordion pockets

If you’re interested I’ve posted something about my interest in the number line on my Google+ page https://goo.gl/ScI0nZ

I would love to hear from anyone who constructs this project with a class!

Rubber Cemented, Oh No!

August 31, 2015

Rubber Cemented 1

What can happen with Rubber Cemented papers, years later

Help! My daughter is off at college and is happy and excited. I thought all was going well until she told me that in one of her classes they are making collages, and they have been instructed to use rubber cement !!!!  I am mortified. I forbid her from using it. And then she told me that it’s part of her art kit  and everyone is using it.  Of course I instructed her to just Google “rubber cement” and I was sure she would be clued into the abyss of misinformation that she had fallen into, but GUESS WHAT, there are all sorts of people on the web that are actually recommending using rubber cement for collage. OMG this is more dire that I could have imagined.

Before I knew better

One of my first handmade books, made using rubber cement: this was made before my first class at The Center for Book Arts

Before I knew better I used rubber cement.  I used it for years on other projects as well. I fondly remember a kaleidoscope I made and decorated for my friend Hank: It was a beautiful object that I poured my heart into, but the glue I used was rubber cement, and within a few years the paper embellishments simply fell off.  I know that rubber cement is acidic (will discolor paper), not permanent, and toxic, but, hey, if everyone is using it how can I compete with that?

I am asking all of my friend, followers, and casual blog visitors to weigh in on this. I need to send an unmistakable message to my daughter about her choice of adhesives.

FYI, I am sending her, via her Amazon prime account,  a photo safe glue stick, some PVA,  Beacon Zip Dry Paper Glue, (which I haven’t tried out yet myself), a container of mod podge, and some small bone folders.

I’ve also sent her these links;

Please, speak up! Comment on the idea of using rubber cement as an adhesive for art projects, and make a recommendation. Even if you find that you will repeat what someone else has said, remember there is strength in numbers and right now the rubber-cementers are everywhere!

Thank you.

Addendum: Beatrice Coron just sent me this very cool link that offers glue advice and info /http://www.thistothat.com/

Weekend-Bookend #3

August 8, 2015

Making Designs starting with  Domino shape, which are cut in half to make squares, cut in half to make scaled down domino, cut in half again to make scaled down square AKA baby squares

I worked with a mixed age group to make “paper quilt” pieces. Students started with a Domino shape,  cut some  in half to make squares, cut some of those in half to make scaled down dominoes, cut some in half again to make scaled down squares ( AKA baby squares).



domino base wall

The “Quilt” Wall

Domino base boy

These weekly Weekend-Bookend posts are sort of like a snap shot of something from my studio or something that I’m thinking about, accompanied by just a small bit of writing.

Designs with Lines and Circles, by Paula Beardell Krieg

My workshop in making designs with lines and circles attracted a good number of people last month. I wrote about the first class already, and here’s my wrap-up post, which is a few weeks late, but, hey, it’s summertime and my children are home.

Designs with Lines and Curves class

Designs with Lines and Curves class

The most wonderful and surprising aspect of the class was not only the number but the age range of the participants! In fact, the class attracted ‘tweens through adults, and since this way of working was new to everyone, the group felt cohesive.

Michael's , Six petals

Michael’s , Six petals

At this second class there were a number of people who were coming for the first time, so with them, we started off creating intersecting circles to create the six-petal pattern that I had introduced to the group last time. People colored them in according to their own style.

Six petal pattern

Six petal pattern

I love the range of styles that I saw. Some of the work was bright and bawdy.

Joyce's six pointed star

Joyce’s six pointed star

Some of the pieces were dreamy and meditative.

Karen's Six-Petal image

Karen’s Six-Petal image

Some pieces were cheerful and carefully considered.

Kathy's 12-petal image

Kathy’s 12-petal image

For people who wanted to go just a step beyond the six-petals, I showed them how to transform the six into twelve petals.

Okay, I know that the image above is hard to see, but, actually, that’s the point. This is what I handed out to people who were ready to move on to a more complex  set of shapes. While I worked with the newcomers, I asked the rest of the group to look at this page and start finding shapes that they might like to highlight in their own pieces. That, after all, is one of the coolest things about this way of creating designs: there are an infinite number of individual responses to the same underlying architecture.

Eight Petal design

Something surprising happened. Some people were happy to use the PDF that I handed them, and to color that in. The point of the class (I thought) was to show people how to create the shapes for themselves, but not everyone wanted to do that.

Diane's work

Diane’s work

It’s fascinating to me to see what unexpected things people do in classes. The fact that there was a group that happily and prolifically just colored was fun to see.

Jeanne's Work

Jeanne’s Work

There was also a group who was very interested in learning how to make the underlying designs for themselves.

Michelle's work

Michelle’s work


I didn’t end up taking many photos during the third class that I taught. It turns out that what I brought in was way challenging, and I spent most of the class focused on helping people be successful. What happened? The first class I showed a six-pointed star (or six-petal) design, the second class I showed an eight-pointed star design, so for the last class it seemed logical to me to show a five-point star design. Making a five-pointed star design turned out to be much more difficult for people.

One of the highlights of the class was showing people a site that turned their work into hyperbolic tiles.

hperbolic tile

Hyperbolic tile

If you don’t know what a hyperbolic tile is, well, it doesn’t matter. Just upload an image into the site  and hit the “generate tiling” tab. Within days of showing this to people, I started see hyperbolic tilings show up in my FB feed.

All told, the three workshops were just wonderful to share with the people in my community.

Here are the links that I found useful for these workshops

Intersecting circles for Seed-of-Life Geometry

Eight Pointed Star Geometry PDF

Dearing Wang’s Youtube channel

Dearing Wang’s HOW 2 Draw Tesseract – Octagram Into Infinity  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CqnH1y1HpF8

Golden Ratio Star Pattern

to make a Hyperbolic Tile http://www.malinc.se/m/ImageTiling.php

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