Tag Archives: folded paper

2013 Lotus Flower Calendar

2013 Lotus Flower Calendar
showing the individual pages and the stand that comes with the calendar

My 2013 Lotus Flower Calendar is here. Each month has a photograph of an actual paper lotus flower that I made. I made lots of lotus flowers throughout the year and photographed my favorites. I ended up with about 50 photos and had to narrow them down to just 12 for the calendar. Not only did I need to narrow the photos down to just 12, I needed each lotus flower to represent its month in some way.

October 2013 from my 2013 Lotus Flower Calendar

October’s lotus flower is made from a marbled paper I found at Paper Source in Portland. It reminds me of a pumpkin. July’s lotus flower is made from a paper I found at the U of O Bookstore in Eugene. It is red, white, black and gold, but it reminds me of the American flag (think 4th of July here). For February’s lotus flower, I did a graduated wash on the petals. They go from pink to pale pink to white on the tips. April showers bring May flowers. Each flower was carefully picked for its month.

2013 Paper Lotus Flower Calendar cover

It was a labor of love that had great results.

Click here if you are interested in seeing the steps involved in making a lotus flower.

You can purchase my Lotus Flower Calendars at the Ashland Art Center.

Enjoy, Candy

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Making Paste Papers: Part Two

Paste papers drying

If you haven’t read part one yet, you can find it here Making Paste Papers: Part One.

Once I’m happy with the way my paste paper looks, it’s time to let it dry. I transfer it to another nonporous surface (and clean up the one on which I made the paste paper). To save space, I set up a drying rack in the bathroom to hold the paste papers on their drying boards (see above photo). Why the bathroom? Because the bathroom floor is linoleum. Cleaning colored paste off a carpet is not easy, just take my word for it!

While the papers are drying, I have to regularly lift up each paste paper to make sure it doesn’t adhere to its drying board. Failure to do this results in a ruined paste paper, which is just one more reason why I prefer making them in the summer. The drying time, as well as the constant checking and lifting of each paste paper, is a lot shorter than at any other time of year.

If you’ve ever had to dry out a piece of paper, you know that it warps as it dries. Paste papers are no different; once dry they need to be ironed flat. I like to iron them on a wooden board, with a piece of an old sheet on both sides of the paste paper. This protects both my iron and the board from getting color or paste on them, just in case. I use a dry iron, and I iron both sides of the paper.

Two books I made which have paste paper covers.

Now, I’m finally ready to make art with my paste papers. I originally made paste papers for bookbinding, either as end sheets or as covers for books. Now I use them for all kinds of paper crafts, and I keep finding more!

Three boxes made out of paste paper.

If you are interested in learning more about paste papers, my favorite book on the subject is The Art of Making Paste Papers by Diane Maurer-Mathison. It’s currently out of print, but you can find it on Amazon for around $40 used. That’s pretty expensive for a paperback, but it’s the best book on making paste papers that I’ve ever come across.

Enjoy, Candy

50 Boxes For A 50th Wedding Anniversary

Here are the 50 boxes I made from my hand-made paste papers.


In late November I received a call from the daughter of some friends of mine. She told me her parents were celebrating their 50th Wedding Anniversary on New Years Eve and wanted to know if I would be interested in sending her a card for their anniversary and maybe including 50 of something in honor of their 50 years of marriage.  It was to be a surprise. I said sure and started thinking of what I would make.

This photo shows some of the boxes open.


Once I start thinking about making something, the idea of doing something simple seems to fly out the window, and this time was no exception. I decided that 50 tiny boxes made out of some of my hand-made paste papers would fit the bill. So between Christmas gifts, my mother’s birthday and setting up a Holiday Studio for Studio Artists at the Art Center, I made these 50 little boxes with a little help from my friend Paul.

50 boxes with some more of them open.

Once the boxes were made, they begged to be filled. These boxes are just a little over an inch square, so I had to think of what I could put in them. I had some tiny wooden spools that I had rescued from the trash that I made into little scrolls. I also made scrolls out of colorful cellophane topped toothpicks. Twelve M&M’s fit nicely into the boxes which allowed two of each color and was nice and colorful. Hearts seemed appropriate, so I cut out some in a number of colors. I also made some colorful paper flowers.

This shows all of the boxes open.

It was a fun project, the type I really love to do. I love making art that involves memories. That seems to be my specialty.

I loved the result and so did my friends.

Here are the 50 boxes all opened. The boxes are just a little over an inch square.

Lotus Flower for Bush Barn Art Gallery


Lotus Flower made for the Bush Barn Art Gallery Holiday Show

This Lotus Flower is made from a beautiful Japanese paper. I made this especially for the Holiday Show at the Bush Barn Art Gallery in Salem, Oregon. The show opens Saturday, November 5. If you happen to be in Salem between then and Christmas eve, drop in and see many lotus flowers that are exclusive to that show. I also have my calligraphic greeting cards, Eco-Holders, Inspiration Books and unique paste paper gift boxes in the show.

I love the way I was invited to participate in this show. I live over 200 miles from Salem. Catherine, the director, found my shop on Etsy and asked me if I would be interested in showing some of my art in their Holiday Show. The internet can be an amazing place to promote art.

2012 Lotus Flower Calendar

This 2012 Lotus Flower Calendar is my latest lotus flower creation. I came up with the idea of making a calendar out of my lotus flower photos. Then, with the help of my son, Christer Rowan of Rowan Design, together we made my idea become a reality.

Christer is a photoshop genius. He took my photos, dropped out the background and made them look more like the actual lotus flowers than I had been able to do. I decided which lotus flowers to use for each month. Red for February for Valentine’s Day, April showers bring May flowers, fireworks for July, sunflower for August, roasted turkey looking lotus flower for November, etc.

The project took longer than I expected, but I enjoyed doing it so very much. I decided on an elongated plastic CD type case/stand that shows off the lotus flower while also letting the viewer easily see the entire month.

Steps to Make a Lotus Flower

My first step in making a Lotus Flower is to pick out the papers I want to use. It takes 12 of paper to make each Lotus Flower, 8 for the blossom and 4 for the “leaves.” I usually, but not always, pick a different colors for the blossom and leaves. Sometimes I even pick multiple colors for the blossoms.

Here are the papers I used today to make my Firestorm Lotus Flower.

12 pieces of paper are needed to make each Lotus Flower

The next step is to fold the pieces of paper.

12 pieces of paper folded and ready to make the Lotus Flower

Then I tie the folded pieces together and fold them into the Lotus Flower. The intense orange, brown and gold colors of this marbled paper remind me of a firestorm. The Lotus Flower looks to me as though it is about to ignite.

Below is the finished Lotus Flower. It takes a little over an hour, sometimes more depending on the paper, from start to finish to make a Lotus Flower.

My finished Firestorm Lotus Flower

Lotus Flower for Summer

Should I call this a bumble bee or a sunflower Lotus Flower?

It’s officially summer and I thought I should highlight a Lotus Flower that calls out Summer loud and clear. Bright, cheery and yellow, it makes me think of either a bumble bee or a sunflower.

This Lotus Flower is made of a very soft paper that reminds me of a batik. I have made this in yellow and black with yellow leaves as shown above and in green and black with green leaves. Both are striking. It is so much fun to try out new papers.

I really enjoy making at least one Lotus Flower a day. It makes me find a peaceful spot in my life for an hour or more each day. Life has been hectic for me lately and the slowing down required to make my Lotus Flowers has helped me center and remember that the most important things in life, aren’t things.