How to Do Iris Folding | A Paper Craft Technique
A Simple Yet Beautiful Paper Craft
This article uses both step by step instructions, as well as a video demonstration, to show you how to do the beautiful paper craft known as iris folding. Pictures are included.
Iris folding is a paper craft used to created shapes for card fronts, scrapbook embellishments, altered art projects or any other craft project where a design is wanted.
Iris folding looks complicated, but is remarkably easy to master. The crafter folds strips of colored paper and arranges them to form a design. An iris, reminiscent of the iris of an eye or of a camera forms in the middle. Hence, the name "iris folding."
Do you do Iris Folding?
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What do you think about Iris Folding?
Iris folding is the a craft of folding small strips of paper and laying these in a pattern design over top of an opening in your card stock. The craft can be done using any sort of colour paper. Iris Folding orginally was developed using printed envelopes as your folding papers. This book contains the basic instructions materials needed and the folding patterns for flowers, circles, hearts,chick, baby booties and more. A very beautiful way of making a card or design. All you need is this book to start this wonderful card making hobby.
Supplies for Iris Folding
what you need
To do Iris folding, you start with an iris folding pattern. You can find patterns at book sellers or on the Internet where they are often available for downloads.
Once you have a pattern, you need relatively few other supplies. Typically, you need papers for creating the design, a piece of card stock to hold the design, transparent tape, temporary tape such as painter's tape to hold the pattern in place, cutting tools, a pencil and something contrasting to display the iris.
It is best to use light weight papers for the iris folding design. Scrapbook paper, origami paper, magazine pages, wrapping paper, tissue paper, napkins or serviettes, or patterned paper cut from the inside of envelopes works well. You can also use ribbon.
The pattern will let you know how many colors or designs of paper you need. Three or four types is a typical number.
Iris Folding Links - Some with Free Iris Folding Patterns
- Scrapping by Design
Paper crafting and scrapbooking video tutorials
- The Simplicify of Iris Folding
Markets a book of iris folding patterns
- Iris Folding on Family Crafts
About.com's Guide to Iris Folding
- Free Iris Folding Patterns
FREE Iris Folding Templates! Card Making Ideas! Book Owner's Exclusives
- Iris Folding @ CircleOfCrafters.com: Learn a New Card Making Technique
Iris folding instructions and free printable iris folding patterns.
How to do Iris Folding
The video below demonstrates it better than I can describe. However, here are the steps I use:
1. Resize the pattern if desired, either by photocopying or by using the computer.
2. Place the card stock FACE DOWN over the pattern. Fasten with a paper clip. Hold the card stock up to the light so you can see the outline of the pattern through it. Using a pencil, trace the outline of the pattern on the card stock.
3. Remove the card stock from the pattern. Using scissors or a craft knife, carefully cut out the outline shape. You can discard the cut-out shape or save it for some other purpose.
4. Using painters tape, attach the pattern to the tabletop.
5. Position the card stock, right side down, over the pattern. Position it so the cut out shape is over the pattern precisely. Use painter's tape to hold the card stock to the table.
6. Referring to the pattern guide, prepare your strips of paper that you will use for folding.
7. Refer to the pattern. Locate Fold Number One. Determine which color of paper you need for Number One. Place the folded strip over Fold Number One to cover. Trim the strip so a little is left over at each end. Tape both ends in place using transparent tape.
8. Refer to Fold Number Two and repeat. Work through the numbers consecutively until all but the iris are filled and taped in place.
9. Remove the card stock from the pattern. Turn it over and view the front. Correct any spaces that may be showing through.
10. Decide how to trim or fill the iris. You might use glossy paper, beads, glitter, a charm, etc.
11. Your iris design is complete. Use in in a greeting card or elsewhere.
Please refer to the video below to see a demonstration of iris folding.
Photos of Iris Folding - Photo Credit: June CampbellClick thumbnail to view full-size
© 2008 June Campbell