Thursday, August 04, 2011

Cardboard Art

Sometimes I just hate being a girl. It is only when I have a van full of stuff to schlep that this thought comes to me. Recently, when I participated in the Schlepp Sisters Show I was telling the other dealers that if I continue to do these pop-up sales, I have to devise a way to load, unload and display with the least amount of effort possible. I explained I was determined to find a cool and clever way to just prop up the storage box and showcase my items right from the vessel I hauled them in on. It is a painful realization when your age, body strength and occupation do not quite go together; which is what lead me to my recent search for cardboard display ideas.

My former staff would always laugh at me when I unpacked a box full of merchandise and was sometimes more thrilled with the packing supplies than the actual product. Opening a box from China, India or some other manufacturing country was always a delight to see because I often squealed over the unusual packing materials they used. To them, I am sure it was just filler, but to me sometimes it was soft or expandable or perforated with nylon and my imagination would soar! I have a small stash stockpiled here and there but rarely have I gotten around to designing with it. In the meantime, I still have plans....

At the Atlanta Gift Mart last summer, friend and divine artisan Wendy Addison made some amazing cardboard tassels to display with her products in the Tinsel Trading booth. I shot a quick picture knowing full well I would try to copy it someday (but unfortunately, still haven't). The inspiration was there as I devoured the random, rural and utilitarian style this (k)crafty item took on.

When painted white cardboard takes on an almost Antique Florentine feel.

The internet is now full of cool, clean and eco-friendly cardboard furniture for function or fashion. But I still love it used as an embellishment. Artist Noelle Rigaudie (as seen on Man Shops Globe) does amazing artisan pieces with it. Cutting, gluing and layering as if it were metal, clay or fabric.

Now if this cube had a back on it, a few tassels and trims, this might be right up my alley for antique show displays, but all of that is easy enough to add.

Just to show, recycling can be art and function.

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