A paperfolding paradise
The website of writer and paperfolding designer David Mitchell
|Pleasant Work for Busy Fingers|
Work for Busy Fingers' by Maggie Browne, was published by
Cassell and Company in London in 1891. The Preface states
that, 'while not a mere translation', the book is based
on 'Des Kindes Erste Beschaftigungsbuch' by E Barth and W
Niederley, which was published in Bielefeld and Leipzig
in 1880. The Foreword goes on to say that: 'I have
omitted much from the German work that seemed unsuitable,
or too difficult, for the boys and girls for whom I have
prepared it' and 'I have also added several new designs,
some of which have been sent to me by young friends who
had read articles by me on a similar subject in
"Little Folks". I have not been able to trace
the articles referred to here.
A full copy of the 1896 'Cheap Edition' of the work can be accessed at www.ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00085050/00001/5. I believe that, apart from its cheapness, this is identical to the 1891 original.
Michel Grand has kindly sent me a review which appeared in the Spectator of 2nd January 1892. I take it that this refers to the 'Paper Shut-Up Box' (Catherine of Cleves Box) though I cannot understand the nature of the alternative box referred to.
Those designs which do not appear in 'Des Kindes Erste Beschaftigungsbuch' are:
The Love Knot Letterfold
The Flapping Bird
A flat version of the Blow-Up Frog.
Those designs which appear in both 'Pleasant Work for Busy Fingers' and 'Des Kindes Erste Beschaftigungsbuch' in an identical form are:
The Woven Cross
The Froebel Star
How to cut a square from a rectangle
How to find the centre of a square
The Short Jacket (made by folding the Triple Blintz Cross in half) (The Shirt)
The Mitre (which is then used as a head for a doll - or the Human Figure)
The Boat with Sail.
The (uncut) Windmill.
The Double Hulled Boat.
The Box (The Junk Box) (developed from the blintxed windmill base version of the Double Boat via the Boat with Fish Box and the Portfolio - neither of which are treated as designs in their own right).
The Captain's Hat (The Newspaper Hat)
The Hanging Pocket (The Corner Wall Pocket)
The Magic Pocket (A simple coin vanish trick)
The Paper Boat
The Pencil Case
The Paper Dart
The Paper Sweet Box (The Puzzle Purse)
The Stamp Case (the Wallet)
The Paper Cracker (The Single Barrelled Paper Banger)
The Double Paper Cracker (The Double Barrelled Paper Banger)
The Chickenwire Pattern Letterfold
The Cut and Fold Windmill
The Paper Frill (used as a candle decoration)
The Fold and Slit Chevron Trellis
The Fold and Slit Chevron Cross
The Fold and Cut Paper Cage
Fold and Cut Paper Trellis
How to Climb Through A Playing Card
The 'Paper Shut-Up Box' (The Catherine of Cleves Box)
The Slit and Assemble Sphere
Cutting a Regular Hexagon from a Square