This past winter I submitted a proposal to the National Museum of Mathematics to present a family workshop at their paper folding MOVES conference this summer. Much to my surprise (and non conveyable delight) they accepted my proposal for hands-on workshop in which people would make a Zhen Xian Bao -Chinese Thread Book- made of three expandable origami boxes, housed in a cover with a ribbon closure.
Much more to my surprise I realized that my workshop time was strictly only 25 minutes.
Finally even much much more to my surprise, the workshop worked out great. Here’s why:
- I created a highly simplified variation of the thread book
- I made packets so no time was lost handing out materials
- I included written instructions so people could work independently
- I made designs on the paper that would help guide the folding
- I made a video of how to finish at home
- I relaxed and had fun
Now here’s the shocking part. Everyone finished their project.
Full disclosure, since this was the very last workshop of the day, we were able to run a little over time. But just a little.
Making a video of how to make this structure was key for me to create an good event. When I realized that I could give people a link that they could reference at home everything seemed doable, and we had a great time with no pressure!
This was a family workshop, though most people were solo. I did have three kids in the room, and they were all very good about helping their parents.
So, yes a good time was had by all. As usual, I completely overprepared (something I do when I am nervous) (which, actually, is always) and the good new is I actually HAVE LEFTOVER PACKETS! that already has a video that goes along with them. I AM SELLING THESE ON ETSY.
The packets includes the paper for the boxes, directions, a cover piece that is prepared with slits for the ribbon and double-sided adhesive tape already applies, ribbon, and a link to the video (which will also appear on my Etsy site). Also I’ll be giving you a few paper strips which you can use to decorate the cover.
The finished, closed thread book is about the size of a large cell phone: 6″x 3″.
Here’s the video that shows you how to make this structure:
Here’s the link to buy the kit on Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/listing/727815499/packet-to-make-a-three-section-chinese
It’s $15, which includes shipping in USA.
Addendum: The kits sold like hot cakes…they are now no longer available. Grateful to all who bought them!