Aug 3, 2010

Making an Accordion Fold Display

Whenever I design a new set of images for Digital Antiques on Etsy, I try to make them as versatile as I can, so the same design can be used for tags, cards, altered art,  etc.   The new Witch's Daybook images are such a lot of fun,  I wanted to have a way to display them on a shelf or in a cupboard.  So after some thought, I came up with the accordion folded display below. 

I also try to use materials that are easy to get and inexpensive if at all possible, so here's what you'll need to make your own display:
Prints of the images you want to use,  lightweight cardboard like cereal or cracker boxes,  black cardstock, glue stick, and scissors.   Pretend the paper punch isn't there - OK?
Cut out your images.  Measure the finished size of the image and then cut out a cardboard piece that measures approximately an inch larger on each side.  Use your cardboard piece as a template, and cut two pieces of black cardstock the same size as the cardboard.  Set one piece aside, and use your gluestick to glue cardstock to one side of the cardboard.
  If you'd like to ink the edges of your image, using a sponge and a stamp pad, do that before you glue your image into place.  Center the image on the black cardstock and glue in place with the gluestick.  Repeat the above steps for each image you want to include in your display.  Set aside to dry.
Using scraps of cardstock, cut out some pieces approx. 3" x 4", or a size that's appropriate for your image.  These will be the hinges for your accordion.  Fold in half lengthwise and crease, using  a bone folder, or butter knife, or whatever you have.
Apply the hinge to the back side of your cardboard mounted images.  Leave about a 1/16"  gap between the two pieces so there will be room for the fold, and glue in place.  If you like to use a tape runner or double sided tape, it works well here, but gluestick works well too.  If you will be joining more than two images, continue hinging pieces together until everything is connected.
Glue a 2nd piece of cardstock to the back of each mounted image, over the top of the hinge.  Set aside and let dry.  Trim the edges if  necessary, and ink the outer edges if you wish.
Here is a view of the back of two joined pieces, where I used black cardstock on one side and scrapbook paper on another.  You have a ton of choices for your background paper, of course, and don't forget old book pages, wrapping paper, magazine pages, and on and on.
I kept the end result pretty simple, but you could find lots of ways to embellish if you wish.  And, of course, you can do this kind of thing with any image you wish, and vary the paper you use for the background according to your taste.

Up next, some new free tags for Fall.

Try to stay cool if you can,  from the Dog and me.


  1. Cool idea, Jan! And thank you SO MUCH for the compliments you sent to Holly about our pumpkin applique pattern! It's very appreciated! We both find the same thing you do, that many aren't clear enough and end up being frustrating. A case in point was a pear pattern I purchased where the designer didn't explain about using a doll's needle at the end to draw up the bottom so it would lie flat. Hers came to a point and if you didn't know what a doll's needle was or how to do this you'd wonder what the heck you were supposed to do to pull that point up. So....I designed my own pear pattern with no needle needed - stands on its own. I might even create a pattern to sell eventually. Sometimes it's just the simple things that can make or break the ease of making something and we're trying for simple! We're both so glad you liked it! Don't forget to show me the results!
    Hugs, Diane

  2. Very cool. I think I would like to give this a try. What a great shelf decoration for Halloween.
    Thanks for the tutorial.

  3. Thanks, Diane and Nan! I am all about simple and easy. I hope you have fun trying this.

  4. Hi Jan,
    This is such a cool project. And what a terrific tutorial. Thanks for sharing with us.

  5. Thanks Jan, Im going to have to check this out a bit more.Looks great.Hugs~~Pam