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Mary Preston

Virginia Causey

Lynn DiNino

Glenda Scott









Buttons and Beads
Mary Preston skillfully combines buttons and tiny beads. The various beads are threaded through the button eyes to secure the button to the box and form the design element. You can find a treasury of embellishments in any bead and fabric shop. Find buttons that reflect the fabric pattern and color. Here's a tip, to ease the thread through stiffened fabric, wax your thread. Mary Preston is a fibre artist, internationally known for her wall pieces, artwear, and animal forms.

Jeweller's Pins
Virginia uses her jewelry to embellish boxes. The techniques used most extensively include fusion of metals on copper, silver and gold through heat patination. Virginia is widely known as an instructor and for her unique approaches to jewelry. The work reflects her interest in artifacts and organic forms. Influenced by Asian art, her pins are the perfect reflection of the origami boxes.

Virginia Causey is an instructor, exhibitor and working jeweler. She has exhibited extensively, including the Smithsonian.

Captivating AnimalsCaptivating Animals
Lynn DiNino, sculptor. The name is synonymous with visual wit and comic creatures. Here she demonstrates the power of her imagery with the simplest of materials. Cork, corrugated paper, pieces of wood and torn paper applied to two square boxes.

Prominent Northwest sculptor, widely exhibited in the US and Japan.

Stainless Steel BoxStainless Steel Box
This box is folded with stainless steel cloth. Glenda developed FabricOrigami and currently teaches workshops in the Pacific Northwest. She comes from a background in illustration, graphic design, ceramics, mixed media sculpture and web design.

Glenda Scott has won numerous awards and a fellowship in sculpture.


Machine Embroidery
Machine Embroidery: Clara Haight has presented us with a stunning example of what can be done by an artisan with machine embroidery. Her creativity produces a wealth of unique designs. As an instructor she shares with us her steps for success. We are most fortunate to have her contribution.


  1. Prepare the fabric and follow the folding instructions for the checkbook pattern. Always fold in paper first, so you can identify the areas for embellishment.
  2. Select embroidery pattern, stabilizer and needle. Depending on the embroidery used, a sticky self-adhesive, tear-away, cut-away and a water soluble stabilizer can be used. A size 70 sharp needle is used.
  3. Hoop the stablizer and spray with a temporary adhesive spray. (If you use the sticky stabilizer, then spray is not needed).
  4. Unfold checkbook. Mark the placement for the embroidery.
  5. Place the checkbook cover on the hooped stabilizer following the markings. The spray or sticky stabilier will hold the fabric in place while you sew. Refold when finished embroidering.
  6. A water soluable stabilizer was used for the eyelet pattern. After it was embroidered, it was submerged in water for a few minutes until the stabilizer dissolved. Then laid flat to dry, pressed and refolded the checkbook.

gold leaf
Using Gold Leaf The application of gold leaf to fabric is a unique way to accent origami. Craft and art supply stores sell inexpensive packets containing several sheets of leaf. It comes in a variety of metallic colors. Always handle gold leaf with the separation paper for support. For this project I use a soft cosmetic rouge brush and a can of all purpose spray adhesive.


  1. Complete your folded item. Unfold and identify the area you wish to apply gold leaf.
  2. With paper large enough to protect your fabric from the spray glue, cut a hole in the paper roughly the shape of the area.
  3. Place paper into position. Mask off the selected area with tape and paper.
  4. Spray adhesive in one short, light burst. Let dry a bit. Apply a sheet of gold leaf on the area, using a soft brush to aid handling. Do not rub with your fingers, use a brush to smooth. Let dry and carefully remove tape and masking paper.
  5. When dry, refold your origami.

stamping fabric
artist: Jill Shear, Stamparadise

Stamping Fabric: If you want your pattern in just the right place, use stamps to embellish your box. A wide variety of stamps are available at your local craft and stationary stores. I use a liquid fabric paint to stamp the fabric. You can place your stamp before or after stiffening. This technique opens a broad range of opportunities for exploration. You can use metallic powders, photo image transfers, stencils, foam block printing and free hand painting. Try an all-over pattern to give the fabric a two sided appearance.


If you want a pattern in a specific area
  1. Identify the area you wish to decorate on your pre-folded paper model.
  2. Cut out the designated area. Place the paper model on the fabric.
  3. Pencil mark a dot on the fabric in the corners of the cut out area of the paper model.
  4. Stamp your pattern in the selected area. You can choose to mark the fabric before or after stiffening. Select the method that works best for you.
If you want a random pattern
  1. Pencil mark the general area to be stamped.
  2. Stamp a random pattern with one or more stamps.

laminating fabric
Laminating fabrics: will enhance your design, allowing you to select contrasting colors or complementary patterns. This technique offers support for larger items. Keep your selected fabrics similar in weight and weave for effective laminating.

Another approach is to cut around a stiffened textile pattern, such as a flower. Then laminate or applique the pattern to the already stiffened fabric. After stiffening, you can cut, fold, punch holes, thread with ribbons, write on, stamp and mail just like paper.


  1. Rough cut two, contrasting fabrics to the desired dimensions.
  2. Select a square of fabric and apply the fabric stiffener.
  3. Place the second square of fabric over the first and apply Stiffy until saturated.
  4. Smooth the layered fabrics and remove excess stiffener using a flat plastic scraper.
  5. Place the combined fabrics on the screen to dry. Continue with the process of ironing and folding.

Metal Cloth
Using metal wire cloth: Utmost caution should be used when working with fine metal mesh. Once this mesh is cut, the edges are razor sharp. The key to handling mesh is to turn a 1/16 inch hem on all four sides before using. Wire cloth will have different characteristics depending on the choice of metal and wire gauge. Tip: be sure you work out all the details with a paper model first.


  1. Wire cloth or metal mesh used is 100 or 200 mesh, 0022-.0045 wire gauge.
  2. Cut with shears, scissors, or old rotary blade.
  3. Score a line 1/16" from edge with a sharp object.
  4. Place a ruler next to the scored line. Using the ruler as a straight edge, fold the cloth over to make a hem. Hem all cut edges.

laminating Paper
Laminating with Rice Paper: This is one of the easiest and most effective techniques for producing fabric with two sides. Rice paper can usually be found in a craft store and stores selling art supplies. There are also several sources online which sell these papers. They come in many patterns. Try to select a pattern appropriately scaled to the folded item. Lamination can be used to apply rice paper and applique textile designs. Try laminating lace to a solid fabric and then fold. Experiment with some scraps of fabric. Let resourcefulness be your guide.


  1. Stiffen, dry, iron and trim out a square of fabric.
  2. Cut out a piece of thin patterned rice paper just a little larger than the fabric square.
  3. With a soft bristled brush, lightly brush stiffener on to the fabric, just enough to cover the surface.
  4. Gently place the rice paper on the wet fabric, patting it down. Do not rub. Sometimes I use a rolling pin to slowly roll over the surface once. Rice paper is very delicate in this wet state and will tear easily if handled too much.
  5. Let dry and iron.
  6. Trim off excess rice paper and you're ready to fold.