Cardboard Playground circa 1967


LIFE Magazine - November 3, 1967 (Volume 63, Number 18) 

Big Play back top Rescan
LIFE Magazine - November 3, 1967 (Volume 63, Number 18) Page 3 LIFE Magazine - November 3, 1967 (Volume 63, Number 18) Page 2LIFE Magazine - November 3, 1967 (Volume 63, Number 18) Page 1

LIFE Magazine – November 3, 1967 (Volume 63, Number 18) Modern Living — The Big Play in Paper, from Giraffes to Gazebos

Wow, check out this 1967 LIFE magazine article entitled, “The Big Play in Paper”, that was lovingly rescued and scanned by my friend Miss Meryl Ann Butler during a recent Spring cleaning.

Meryl Ann and I met while taking online classes from Diane Gilleland at Crafty Pod, (I learned almost everything I know about blogging from those classes) and I got to know Meryl Ann by her spit-your-tea-out-hilarious sense of humor and from the really helpful stuff she posted in the forums (she has a long and distinguished career in the craft industry.) She is the author of the book 90 Minute Quilts among, many others and she has an intensely joyful, vibrant style with a personality to match.

Meryl Ann recently sent me an email message explaining that:
“This clipping was in my “morgue file” which was a file we had in the olden days before electronic files… with clippings of images that might inspire future artwork. My file had thousands of clippings, and I just threw most of it away a couple of days ago – a hard thing to do, since I had collected images for a long time – well, at least from 1967, lol!  I only saved a couple of them, and of course the second I saw this I thought of you, Amber!”

How very thoughtful, and how entirely awesome. Enjoy a trip back to the glory days of cardboard………………….we’ll relive them again soon?

Adapting a sewing pattern for cardboard

It’s often handy to work from a pattern if you’re feeling squeamish about designing a headpiece for your costume from scratch. Sewing patterns are a great option if you can get your hands on an appropriate pattern for the costume you’re making. Here I’ve adapted a simple child’s hood pattern into a headpiece that is big enough to fit an adult.

1. Trace your pattern pieces onto cardboard and cut them out.

2. Texturize your cardboard by crumpling it up and twisting it, this will give your cardboard a more leather-like texture and make it easier to work with.

3. Cut thin flexible strips of strips of cardboard about 1.5 to 2 in. wide by whatever length you will need (I like boxes that are similar in weight to pizza boxes) and glue these strips one side at a time to the two pieces that you are trying to join. Regular white glue and clamps or clothespins work great for this.

4. Continue adding your cardboard seams as you put all your pattern pieces together. trim as needed.

5. Now you can begin to modify your piece for your individual costume. Here I added more pieces with the same technique by gluing thin strips of cardboard for the seam and then attaching a forehead and jaw piece.

Links to a few handy patterns suitable for costume making:

Vest pattern by the Mother Huddle

Hood pattern by Fabric link

Children’s fitted hood/hat pattern by Martha Stewart Living

Baby cowboy boots pattern by Nap Time Crafters (You could adapt this pattern for making any kind of boot-like shoe covers.)


How to Make Cardboard Books

The first cardboard book I ever made was for Electra’s first birthday. It was filled with photos of her learning to walk and of places we had seen on day trips around Tokyo. Electra loved the book so much that she pulled off most of the pictures and peek-a-boo flaps I had pasted in. The beauty of the book was that we could easily add new pictures and tape to make any repairs. A second book ensued filled with photos of Electra helping out around the house doing things like sweeping, peeling garlic, putting groceries away and watering plants. It was a wordless book that opened up an incredible amount of dialogue (for a 1 1/2 year old) about our day to day life. We still love to look at our cardboard books together now, 1 year later and we have added many many more cardboard books to our library.

How to Make Cardboard Books:

In addition to cardboard, you will need washi tape or masking tape to make a book.

Cut your cardboard pages and cover.

Tape two pieces of cardboard together.

Tape four pieces of cardboard together.

Trim up any washi tape that is hanging over the edges.

Start layering tape across the spine of the book to bind it.

Cover the entire spine with washi tape.

When you are done it will look like this.

Now add washi tape in the other direction along the spine of the book.

Now add washi tape in the other direction along the spine of the book.

Add your own personal flair.