Non-adhesive Book

Blizzard Book, Post #3: Pages

Three Blizzard Books
Three Blizzard Books, with pages and covers

This is the third of my posts about the Blizzard Book, a folded paper design by Hedi Kyle.  Since I just taught a class on how to create this book I have been able to indulge my great interest in different approaches to the papers, proportions, and covers of Blizzard Books. My last post showed the Blizzard Book as a single sheet of paper that is  folded in such a way that each page becomes a pocket.  This post  features a  variation which will include adding in pages onto the spine of the book. 

Blizzard Book Spines
Blizzard Book Spines: left, in progress: right, completed

 The first step in making a Blizzard Book is to fold accordions to make the spine. In the Card Carrying Blizzard Book the spine becomes the whole book because the paper, which is 17 inches x 7 5/8 inches, is divided up into only eight accordions. To make a  Blizzard Book with pages I begin with the same size paper, 17 inches x 7 5/8 inches, but I divide this one up  into sixteen accordions. The result is a tall, thin spine that has tabs on the tops and bottoms. 

Sliding a folded page under the head and tail tabs of the Blizzard Book
I know that this might be hard to see and understand from these photos, but part of the charm of this book is that it is tricky to figure out right away.  Tabs are created, head and tail on the spine, by making V-folds on the accordions and then laying down the V-folds, thus creating a tab.  Long papers folded into an accordion can then be tucked under these tabs on the spine as pages of the book.

The Blizzard Books in the photo above have the same size spine. What makes them different is the size of the width of the paper used for the accordion pages that fit into the spine.

Using standard size paper to make mimic accordion pages
Since I really like using standard size copy paper whenever possible,  I do a book base fold with  8 1/2′ x 11″ paper  to mimic the qualities of the accordion (photo above).
And some of the spines of my Blizzard Books start with a standard 8 1/2 x 11″ copy paper, too,  which I then cut down to 8 1/2″ x 7 5/8″. When I use this proportion, I make only eight accordion sections to begin with. This size spine creates tabs which work perfectly with folded 8 1/2″ x 11″ papers when I fold them like a book base. The extra bonus fun thing about using these standard sized papers is that I can use standard size envelopes, A4s, for the covers of the Blizzard Book, as shown in the photo above.
It’s also worthwhile working out how to make covers which echo the inside folds of the Blizzard Book.  But, when teaching a three-hour class, the envelope-covers work out just fine. 
Now, I realize that I have just put out  lots of details, that might seem like  mumbo-jumbo. During my class last Saturday at North Main Gallery I was  nearly apologetic to the participants about all the precise folding and math talk that learning this structure requires.  Even though these folks assured me that, although it was challenging, they appreciated being able to learn how to make this book. I am feeling uncomfortable here, now, writing a post that might be hard to follow.  I’ve been encouraged, however, to feel that it’s worth the effort.
Blizzard Book with Pink Covers

After all, it is such a beauty of a book.

2 thoughts on “Blizzard Book, Post #3: Pages

  1. I have seen the design and know how to make the book itself, but how exactly do you get the “envelope” effect with the cover? I have been pondering the design for some time actually, and would like to give it a try. Thanks for the help!


  2. I’ve played around with lots of different folding solutions to make the covers for these books. None, unfortunately, are easy to describe. I recommend that you keep playing around with different ways of folding the paper and you will likely come up with something that you find appealing. Good luck!!


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