Monday, January 31, 2011

All My Chickens, week 1, Papercut Rooster

I've often admired the elaborate paper-cuts, traditionally done in red paper, that I understand are to be hung in the window during the celebrations for Chinese New Year. Somewhere, I've got a little envelope with a collection of all the animals, all very intricate, and fairly delicate, which I intend to frame one day so I can enjoy them all the time.

While trolling the web for chicken-related projects that might relate to either Groundhog Day (wasn't sure how I'd tie that in, but I was trying to keep an open mind) or Chinese New Year, as those are the holidays celebrated this week, I was thrilled to find a satisfactory paper-cut of a Rooster.
(Yes, I'm fully aware this is to be the year of the Rabbit - but I'm doing a Chicken theme, and Rooster is a long way off.)

I haven't yet found a red paper worthy of this pretty design, but as this is my first try in a long time at such delicate paper cutting, I may just work with what I've got handy before I snip into something more expensive. Not that one piece of paper could set you back too much, but I know I'd feel it was a shame to ruin it, should I botch this one up.

The idea is to cut out the white portions of the design, leaving the dark portions intact. I realize that the Rooster then is totally separated from the cloud-like and grassy pieces, but as I plan to mount this piece in a frame (I'm thinking between two panes of glass instead of on a background) I think I can make it work.

Though you probably don't need to go out an buy a fancy pair of scissors (Scherenschnitte was mildly popular in my teens, and required the use of small, very pointy, very sharp scissors, which of course I've totally lost track of), what you use does need a good sharp tip. Or, I suppose, you could use an Exacto, (on a cutting mat) if you're handy with one.

And in case this project makes you want to bust out all the colorful paper and get your kids involved, there are lots of simple, cute designs (one possibility here) that any kid old enough to handle a pair of scissors could manage, too.

*pic of my own creation added after-the-fact*

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