Patty Paper

Patty Paper

The Sunday Paper #102

Paper of the Week: Patty Paper

Patty Paper blog

I had a lovely conversation recently with my sister-in-law, who is a middle school teacher in the Chicago area. We got to talking about some of the interesting projects she does with her students, including building tetrahedra using origami. She told me they use patty paper (that wax-like paper used to separate meat patties) because it folds well, is inexpensive and is cut into 5-1/2″ squares. She uses the book Patty Paper Geometry, which contains 12 chapters of guided and open investigations for geometry using patty paper! I’m ordering a copy right now.


Out of the Studio:

I’ve been in Kalamazoo this week where I am lecturing and opening my 25th anniversary retrospective exhibition (have your ordered a copy of my catalog yet?). I’m teaching two one-day workshops over the weekend, and there’s a lovely group of paper and book enthusiasts here who are entertaining me to no end! Here’s a shot of The Wishing Wall (more images coming soon), which is on view through the end of the month at the Kalamazoo Book Arts Center. 



Check out these amazing paper cut sculptures by Clare Pentlow as seen on Fubiz. I want to run my hands over them (shhhh…).


I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Winsome Jobling a couple of times over the years. She is also celebrating with a retrospective exhibition at the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory in Darwin, Australia. I watched her demonstrate a wonderful watermarking technique (using underwear) to create these pieces below at a paper conference in Cleveland, Ohio a few years ago.

© Winsome Jobling, Sweat, watermarked handmade paper

© Winsome Jobling, Sweat, watermarked handmade paper

There’s an exhibition of paper replicas of 80 buildings from around the world from the Kemnitzer Paper Model Collection at the National Building Museum in Washington D.C. that opens April 16th. After touring the world, visitors will get the chance to build their own models with two structures designed by Museum staff (there are a few pdf templates at the link, too).


A reader recently turned me onto the work of Imin Yeh. Check out her Paper Bag Project, a wall installation of paper shopping bags accompanied by this video showing the laborious process required to make each bag from scratch. Entirely handmade from cut up rags to rag paper, the bags are hand cut and screen printed, creased and constructed and fitted with a hand weaved rope. This project is directly inspired by a paper factory in Sanganeer, India that employed hundreds of workers to make shopping bags in the exact same process.

This is a fascinating article about the history of paper in England, which was a revolutionary material at the time. Dr. Orietta Da Rold from the Faculty of English and St John’s College is leading this project called Mapping Paper in Medieval England.


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1 Comment

  1. Ashisha says:

    Imin Yeh and the Paper Bag Project is astonishing on so many levels.
    Like learning to bake a cake by first growing your own wheat to grind
    into flour, raise chickens for the eggs, going to where vanilla beans
    are cultivated etc etc etc….making something so familiar to be so
    Thank you for sharing the video.
    With love,