DIY Wedding

DIY Wedding

Extreme Paper: The Long, Dark Road to a Bright Idea

comments (24) November 24th, 2008     

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Jeff_Rudell Jeffery Rudell, contributor
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The finished piece prior to its installation in the holiday windows of Tiffany & Company. Its on view until December 25 at Fifth Avenue and 57th Street in New York City. 
Two simple shapes formed the basis for my chandelier. My goal was to come up with a design that looked delicate and ornate but would hold up beneath the hot lights of a window display.
Strategic cross-grain creasing added great stability to my project. As well, I sistered together two of each shape to further enhance the strength of the piece. 
The finished piece prior to its installation in the holiday windows of Tiffany & Company. Its on view until December 25 at Fifth Avenue and 57th Street in New York City. 

The finished piece prior to its installation in the holiday windows of Tiffany & Company. It's on view until December 25 at Fifth Avenue and 57th Street in New York City. 

Photo: Jeff Rudell
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All told, this piece ended up having more than 765 discrete components, 10 feet of dental floss, 15 glue sticks, 6 ounces of white craft glue, and weeks of my time and effort. The resulting chandelier is, I believe...a failure. A beautiful failure, perhaps, but a failure, all the same. I say this because, given the budget I had for this project, it ceased to make much financial sense long before I actually struck upon a solution that allowed me to complete it. I actually lost money. Failure.

However, since I am loath to admit defeat, perhaps I ought to consider amortizing the cost of this project over the coming weeks, months, and years where the lessons learned here will likely pay handsome dividends. Until the balance sheet tips in my favor, I'm happy to offer up for your review my biggest "failure" of the year. 

The holidays are over. Hooray! Long live the holidays.


These are my templates for the two structural components of my chandelier. I cut 12 of each shape and then paired them up: two stemmed arms attached to each other with paper struts, alternating with two stemless arms attached to each other with paper struts.

 


The first 12 stemless components. Hand-cutting these items took longer than expected but, given the budget, die-cutting was not a viable option.

 


These components formed the underlying structure of my project. I cut 12 of these profiles and glued them together in pairs.

 

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Comments (24)

RedShoe_Stylist writes: Hey, That's great guy
This is the most marvelous thing i ever seen.

Posted: 3:29 am on March 1st
Verityk writes: Hi again so i purchased the magazine attached to this page and it does not have the pattern in that book. Is anyone able to help me on how i can purchase the pattern in Australia.

Thanks
Posted: 12:02 am on January 7th
YvetteG writes: Hello Jeff,

I love this chandelier and would like to make one for my niece for her birthday. Can you let me know where I can find the template to trace over the paper I plan on using? I would greatly appreciate it and thank you so much for sharing this design.

Yvette
Posted: 2:39 pm on September 12th
YvetteG writes: Hello Jeffery, I absolutely love this chandelier. I would like to make one for my neice's birthday but I am unable to find the template. Would you be able to direct me? Again, amazing job...is is beautiful!!

Thank you,

Yvette
Posted: 1:51 pm on September 12th
Verityk writes: Hi ElihuA91 are you able to advise me on where u get the patterns from? Is it in the booked that is advertised on this page 'Holiday Decorating Ideas' Im am very interested in making one as you have just done.

Thanks
Posted: 1:49 am on June 30th
ElihuA91 writes: This was a wonderful project, I really enjoy cut paper art/sculpture and am working on making a portfolio of this type of work. I was so inspired i decided i would go out and make one myself. It in no way came out as well as yours it was definitively not as clean but that was probably because i rushed through the project. Ill put up a picture of my version and i will hopefully be redoing it and making a cleaner one. One more thank you so much for sharing this with us.
Posted: 10:12 am on June 23rd
Verityk writes: Jeffery, this is fantasic!! I am from Australia and wonderinf if where i can get the pattern to make this great creation. Or if anyone else can help me that would be great i would love to make it for my best friends new baby room.

Posted: 11:59 pm on June 13th
fevireyes writes: Where can I get this template? I love it!

Posted: 8:16 am on May 22nd
jacke writes: Thank you for sharing! One way to recoup your time/$ would be to sell templates for the less talented of us, this would be really cool on probably a smaller scale for apt dwellers

also this might could be a design for Ikea or something like that....i want one!!!
Posted: 2:04 am on December 3rd
lshablesky writes: I love this design, its absolutely breath taking. Can someone send me the templates?
Posted: 1:01 am on October 16th
missbree126 writes: i fully enjoyed making this chandelier. thank you for sharing your design.
Posted: 10:58 pm on October 11th
msnew007 writes: This is amazing...and a lot of work! Really beautiful!
Posted: 12:32 am on July 27th
sandeejones writes: jeffrey, I just found you and am floored by your talent! AMAZING. I was hoping you would share exactly what lb. and type of paper you used for the chandelier. I REALLY want to try one - not as large but try just the same. Do you have your own blog/website? Do you have a book? I can't wait to see what you create next! Just seeing creations like these make me happy! Thanks!
Posted: 4:10 pm on April 7th
bethtrue writes: Absolutely gorgeous - that is an amazing creation! Thanks for sharing your great step-by-step too!
Posted: 2:40 pm on January 8th
LAURAMCHUGH writes: Jeff, This is amazing.............I would love this in my home. You are the best paper crafter I have seen. Keep up the great work. Can't imagine the amount of thought and time that went into this one. How do you come up with all these interesting designs????? I always loved working with paper but you take it to a totally different dimension, and you make me step up my game when working with paper. Thank you.
Posted: 4:27 pm on December 15th
CritterCharmer writes: Amazing work!!
Posted: 9:40 am on December 3rd
TarheelCraftyGirl writes: I've never commented on a project before, but---this is magnificent.

I've seen your work before, and been amazed, but THAT is absolutely amazing. Words fail me, I WANT to be this good!
Posted: 7:30 pm on November 28th
PatriciaZ writes: Amazing! I love how you've shared the process.
Posted: 7:19 pm on November 28th
grammy_gone_WILD writes: WOW!!!! far more patience than i can imagine! WOW!! how smart are they to ask you to dress there window! WOW!!
Posted: 11:40 am on November 25th
DanaBarbieri writes: This is beautiful!! Thanks for sharing this.
Posted: 9:01 pm on November 24th
MichaelaMurphy writes: I can't even speak. Is this what is going on when I call you and ask what's up? You constantly blow my mind.
Posted: 2:42 pm on November 24th
AWilcox writes: WOW, this is one of the most creative and beautifully executed projects I have ever seen. This is absolutely gorgeous! Is there anyway of actually attaching small lights, that won't burn the paper (e.g. a very small string of Christmas lights) to this AMAZING chandelier? I want one of these in my home! It is truly stunning, Mr. Rudell you have OUTDONE yourself! Simply INCREDIBLE!!! Great job - this makes a perfect gift for any season. Congrats on a superior product.

Have a nice holiday!
AW
Posted: 12:42 pm on November 24th
susanstars writes: That is absolutely magnificent! I'm just amazed.
Posted: 12:35 pm on November 24th
Jen_W writes: Jeffrey! This is the most incredible thing. I just kept muttering "Omigod, omigod, omigod" as I looked at this post and saw all the photos of what meticulous talent went into producing such a work of art. You elevate crafting and this site into the heavens.
Posted: 11:57 am on November 24th
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