ForeWord Reviews

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Grandma's Magic Scissors

Paper Cutting from A - Z

Foreword Review

For 1600 years, artists have been folding paper and cutting out beautiful images to decorate and charm. For fifty years, the author (“Grandma Day”) has been combining this ancient art with another one—storytelling—to enchant children all over the country. In this book, she shares her knowledge and patterns to enable her audience to bring this art form home with them.

Combining step-by-step instructions, more than one hundred original patterns, and stories that complement the patterns, Day provides all the guidance needed for beginners to start creating story illustrations with their own scissors. Patterns advance in difficulty throughout the book, so even experienced paper cutters will find new ideas. Readers who remember folding paper in half to cut out hearts for Valentine’s Day will have no problem following the directions to cut out rodents to illustrate “Three Blind Mice.” From there they can advance to creating ornate castles, dragons, and animals to portray scenes in the stories provided by Day, or any story of their own choosing.

These pieces of paper art are not just for storytelling, however. Day also suggests using the patterns to make party decorations, invitations and cards, scrapbook embellishments, masks, mobiles, quilting patterns, and even wall borders for a nursery. With minimal effort, hosts can create Santa place cards that stand on their own to decorate the table for Christmas. Three-dimensional Christmas tree cutouts can hang from the ceiling; chains of snowmen and angels can border doorways and windows; and traditional snowflakes can adorn walls, with more elaborate snowflakes featuring reindeer and more snowmen.

Day’s experience as a professional storyteller, early childhood educator, and award-winning author and illustrator of There’s a Frog on a Log in the Bog shines through in her ability to give easy-to-follow instructions that will have even beginners creating elegant pieces of paper art. With patterns covering such diverse subjects as story characters, holidays, animals, and Christian, Jewish, and Islamic religious symbols, everyone from schoolchildren to expert crafters will find this book an invaluable resource for creating a myriad of projects. All a reader needs is a little imagination to create her own magic scissors.

Christine Canfield