BASIS and Moveable Books at Bancroft Library in Salem

August 17, 2011


A boat that Sails Across the Page with a sliding tab

Today a group of emerging paper engineers will be offering their skills to children in Salem,  New York  which will be the season’s final workshop for Book Summer In Salem (BASIS) 2011.
Book Foredge

The ??? Book, a collaborative Pop-up book by students in Salem

This past year Cloe, Carly, Charity, Adam, Hannah, Scout, Keenan, Mikayah, and Lucy worked with Ruth Sauer and Ed Hutchins at the North Main Gallery. Not only did Ruth and Ed introduce these students to methods of paper engineering, but they somehow facilitated an underlying understanding of pop-ups and moveable paper mechanisms so that the students were able to create page after page of interesting structures, which became stories, which became a book, The ???? Book.

Creating Dimension with Box Pop-ups

A V-fold Pop-up and a Box Po-up together on a page


Occasionally I had the chance to stop in while these  talented young people would be busy at work creating their pop-ups. While I was always impressed by the focus they brought to their work, what I was most intrigued with was the way would often use more than one kind of pop-up on a page.  Ed explained to me that they would use the box style pop-up for dimension, and the V-style pop-up for movement.  For instance, in the photo above the teapot seems to pour as the page opens.

Autumn with her Pop-up

I’m updating this post as the workshop goes on…lots of children, lots of pop-ups here. Excellent instruction, too.

Instructor Cloe

The two young instructors, Carly and Chloe, kept us busy. We had mothers, children, grandmothers and greatgrandmothers here.

Great-grandma Kay's Spider Web pop-up, in progress



3 Responses to “BASIS and Moveable Books at Bancroft Library in Salem”

  1. eliashickman Says:

    I did something like that with my students three years ago. It was a lot of fun.


  2. I am most interested in learning how you did the cover binding; I’ve made pop-ups with children before, but to bind a full book like this we’ve found it difficult to have each page open fully. How did you account for that with this book?


    • Hi Mary Ellen,
      Ed Hutchins contructed the structure for this amazing book. You can contact him through his website If I remember correctly, he made attached the pages together, back to back, and attached the whole book block into a case he constructed.
      Ed is a generous teacher, and I am sure he would be happy to respond to an inquiry about how the book went together. From looking over you Lyric_arts site, it’s clear that you know what you’re doing!


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