Expanding Pop-Up

Expanding-love This card starts out tiny — a mere 4″ by 2.75″ (10.5cm to 7cm) — but when you open it up this expanding pop-up card fans out to a full 8″ by 6.5″ (21cm x 16.5cm). Print it on a regular sheet of letter sized paper, cut the simple shape with a pair of scissors, fold it up, et voila! You’ve made a small card which will make a big impression!
This card is very easy and quick to make with scissors and regular printer paper, and the download includes a bonus, self-locking envelope template. The envelope can also be printed on ordinary letter sized paper.

Expanding pop-up card options:

Get a blank template to draw your own card, or choose from the following designs:

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Video Tutorial

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Chinese Finger Trap

The Chinese finger trap is traditionally made of bamboo, but this amusing toy can be easily crafted from an ordinary sheet of paper. Put your finger in this pretty paper tube and then try to pull it off. The harder you pull, the tighter the weave becomes. You’re trapped! Even the Star Trek character Data was ensnared by this ancient toy. To escape, all you need is a little gentleness. Push it gently off your finger, rather than yanking on the other end, and it slips right off.chinese-finger-trap

This paper toy is cheap and easy to make, with materials and tools you already have. This makes it perfect as a low tech, DYI birthday party favor. Slip it in the goodies bags, or use it to decorate the table.

FREE download includes illustrated, printable instructions.  Get the PDF file for free or you may support this website by naming your own price.

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If you prefer to view instructions online click here.

Mother and Child

Hope Joy Mother and child
This tender scene can make a perfect pop-up Christmas card, but the bond between mother and child are truly universal. From a single blank sheet of paper, you can make this mother lean towards her baby as a tiny hand reaches up to touch her face. This kind of love transcends all cultures, religions, and even time itself.

Mother and child hope joyDownload the template, a printable PDF line drawing, then make as many cards as you’d like for your personal use.

This template is fairly difficult to cut and fold, so if this is your first time making paper craft, you should practice with easier pop-up cards first.

Customize your “Mother and Child”

The download includes instructions and the interior pop-up template with the word “Joy,” plus the “Hope” cover, with text and star to be cut from a dark sheet of card stock. You can customize the pop-up by using any 5″ by 7″ card to use as a cover. You can also omit the word “Joy,” and replace it with your own thoughts. The pattern is printed on the reverse, so it will be invisible on the finished card. Write your own text if, for example, you plan on making this to congratulate a new mother, or even to announce your pregnancy with a very special keepsake.

How to Fold the Mother and Child pop-up card

This video shows how to fold the mother and child card, by gently, and progressively creasing each scored line. The card in this video was cut with a Klic-N-Kut KNK plotter cutting machine, which is why there are no printed lines. Your template will have cut and fold lines on the reverse side of the card, so they will be invisible on the final product.


This pop-up paper ambulance is ready for any emergency: use it as a stocking stuffer, a travel toy, or even a get well card. Download this printable template, print it on a single sheet of paper, cut, fold and glue and in 20 minutes you’ll be ready to go save some lives.

ambulance-frontThe download includes written instructions, and you can also watch the video tutorial below. You will see this pop-up card is not too difficult to make, but you will need a scalpel knife and cutting mat. Gluing the small tabs also requires some dexterity.

Ambulance video tutorial

2016 Desk Calendar

How can you fit twelve months on a cube with six faces? Watch the video and download the template to find out how. It is surprisingly easy to make this printable paper puzzle box and 2016 desk calendar. Click here to view the 2017 calendar.

This printable 2016 desk calendar comes with a matching pop-up gift label and a sliding red sleeve which serves both to show the current week, and to keep the box shut.Calendar-label

The download includes two versions:

  • US version starts the week on Sundays and can be printed on 2 sheets of standard letter-sized paper (8.5″ by 11″).
  • A4 European version starts the week on Mondays. Months and days of week are written in English.


The box comes with instructions and is easy to make with a pair of scissors and a touch of glue. For best results, print on light card stock — or on different colored card stock to make a festive collection of calendars!

 Click here to get the 2017 desk calendar!


How does the Desk Calendar work?

The desk calendar puzzle box mechanism is simple to operate, but counterintuitive. Start by opening the box. Easy, right? All you need to do is rotate the two parts of the box on the hinge. But then KEEP ON ROTATING the parts in the same direction! The two parts rotate around each other without ever becoming detached. The hinge itself moves around the box edges, and finally ends up on the opposite rim. Meanwhile, the pattern on the box has been magically replaced by a completely different pattern.


If you would like to purchase the 2016 calendar, please contact me. Or get the latest version here.

Watch the Desk Calendar video tutorial

The Desk calendar template comes with illustrated instructions, but this video tutorial will show you how to make it.

Paper-Rubiks-cube-with-ringIf you like this paper puzzle calendar, you’ll love the working paper Rubik’s cube!

Concrete chess set

What is a concrete chess set doing on a paper craft website? Simple! Concrete (or plaster of Paris, or many types of plastics and resin) can be cast. And you can use paper or other sheet material such as styrene to make your molds.


Detailed instructions on making this prize winning concrete chess set can be viewed on Instructables, but click “Add to cart” here to download the patterns for your bishop and knight. This template is free but you can choose to offer your support to the designer by naming your price.

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Thank-youIf you choose to pay for the template you will also receive this pop-up thank you card template.

 The Complete Concrete Chess set in its natural environment


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Other projects for you

chess setIf you like chess you might be interested in making my Paper Chess Set or other paper toys.

Violinist playing violin

The young violinist comes alive and plays the violin as you open and close this card.



violin-frontThis is a printable template which you can make yourself. DIY pop-up cards make very special gifts, and this violin card is fairly quick to assemble. It is rated “intermediate” because it does require steady hands while cutting the card with a scalpel knife on a self healing cutting mat — but even a beginner with enough patience can make it.

The pop-up can be printed and cut on a single sheet of letter sized or A4 paper, and the download includes illustrated instructions and a template for the card exterior.