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Traditional Papercutting: The Art of Scherenschnitte [Paperback]

Susanne Schlapfer-Geiser
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

6 Jun 2002
Traditional European/Jewish silhouette papercutting, scherenschnitte, dates back hundreds of years, yet is still popular as it requires very few tools and no elaborate set up, other than a sharp pair of scissors. Yet, it can lead to elegant and complex creations...In this practical manual, a celebrated Swiss papercutting artist explains the basics, from selecting paper to holding the scissors, from planning your design to framing it effectively. Materials and tools; Basics of cutting; Cutting with a craft knife; Folded cutwork; Free form open cutting; Positive-negative cutwork; Coloured Scherenschnitte; Finishing touches; The history of the art

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Product details

  • Paperback: 142 pages
  • Publisher: Lark Books,U.S. (6 Jun 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1579902758
  • ISBN-13: 978-1579902759
  • Product Dimensions: 25.5 x 17.9 x 1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 61,671 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars INCREDIBLY BEAUTIFUL PROJECTS 29 Jun 2004
A beautiful introduction to this Swiss art, ranging from simple silhouettes to the most beautiful and intricate designs like trees with individual branches and twigs. This books takes you through the basics of tools and techniques, and introduces folded papercutting and open-work, advancing to more intricate projects. There's a very intersting chapter on the history of this art form.
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The `bible' of scherenschnitte 16 Feb 2010
By E. A. Lovitt - Published on Amazon.com
This book is a charming introduction to a craft that requires only paper and scissors to get started. If you delighted in folding paper and cutting out six-sided snowflakes in grade school, you are already apprenticed in this medieval art.

Swiss artist, Susanne Schläpfer-Geiser coaxes the beginning paper cutter along in a series of clear, easy steps through the basics, then into folded cutwork. Free-form or open cutting is next, illustrated by the author's appealing borders of chickens, mice, cats, elephants, and dogs at play, holding umbrellas, rolling over, and going about their daily lives. More complicated work is also illustrated, such as the Scherenschnitte of Noah's Ark by the author.

A good technique for learning how to craft beautiful paper cuttings is to read a chapter, practice the technique within, then go back through the author's instructions to determine what you could improve. She teaches her readers how to choose good paper, how to hold the scissors (and also what type of scissors work well), and how to manipulate the paper while cutting. There are also directions how to paste the finished scherenschnitte to a background (I found the pasting harder than the cutting!), and how to frame your finished work of art.

The more advanced chapters explain techniques for creating scherenschnitte with borders, cutting them with a craft knife, positive-negative cutwork, and coloring your finished work. You could also try your luck with scherenschnitte on eggs.

The final chapter details the history of scherenschnitte in countries such as China, Poland, Persia, and Germany. Illustrations of this craft by its most famous practitioners are also included.

I very much hope that a new edition of this book will find its way into print, so that everyone who is interested in this attractive art form can afford to buy a copy. It is truly the `bible' of scherenschnitte.
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