Thoughts from the exhibition

Last Saturday was the big opening of the graduation show for Bachelor level Design and Master level Design, Child Culture Design and Business & Design at HDK, Academy of Design and Crafts, Gothenburg, Sweden. The Pattern Printer Project was of course found in the Master section of the exhibition, and will stay there until Saturday the 11th of June. Welcome if you find yourself in the area!

In the room you will find half the space papered with the Jungle pattern and the other half papered with the Rotation pattern. A wardrobe is papered with the Flow pattern and in there you will find a screen showing the patterns in Stop Motion Films. A section of the jungle pattern can be coloured in with pencils and on one part of the Rotation wall you can combine your own patterns with loose repeats.  

The room is papered with approximately 500 papers using only cornstarch glue as an adhesive.

It was a bit daunting, the task of covering the walls of this nice little room with four meters to the ceiling, the first time trying out the project in this scale. I live to tell the tale, and now I can share some of the wisdoms I learned:

1. It is nice to paper with such small pieces. Because the A4s are so tiny they are incredibly easy to handle. And you can always take a break. Put up a few, and go grab a coffee. Continue the next day or the next week. There is no need for massive preparations like with normal wallpaper. If the glue runs out, you just go and make some more. If the prints run out, go an print some more. To be fair it takes a bit longer to cover a big area, but on the other hand the process is so flexible that you can do it on those spare hours you wouldn't dream to start papering with normal wallpaper, and cover areas that you wouldn't think of covering otherwise.

2. Be generous with the cornstarch glue and don't freak out when the paper becomes uneven. No problem, it will turn nice and smooth again over night when it dries. You might need to go over some edges with a cornstarch glue dipped sponge if you notice a corner here and there not sticking to the wall as it should the next day.

3. Don't do this if you are a perfectionist! It will not be perfect. I repeat: the result will not be perfect. But it will be good enough. With so many small pieces there are bound to be mismatches along the way. As a whole it will still look good, and you will probably be the only one noticing those small incoherences. Close to the ceiling, it was hard to reach and the ladder was wobbly, so I stopped caring about matching the pattern altogether. I just started putting random pieces there to fill up the wall to the top. As it turns out it was too far away to notice from the floor anyway.

4. If anything goes wrong, DON'T PANIC! Just paper it over! This is the beauty of paper tiles compared to paper rolls! After the first day of the exhibition, I discovered that people had coloured outside the designated area on the wall and had started "enhancing"  on parts of the wall with green coloured jungle pattern. Easy fix, I just papered over it!

5. It might be an idea to plan were to but the animals on the wall. I did it by using Tac-it adhesive clay.

6. For God's sake! Leave some overlap when papering, at least when papering the jungle pattern. I cut the papers on the cutting lines at the top and left side of the papers. On the bottom and to the right I kept as much overlap as possible. This will give you some space for errors without the wall shining through by the edges. However, with Flow and Rotation I recommend cutting all edges all the way to the cutting lines or you wont be able to rotate them and experiment with their application.

It took about two days to finish the work, but of course it was worth it. Just look at these pictures from the exhibition!

And the finale: the obligatory before and after image.



Which one do you prefer?

Paint the walls!

Do you ever feel the urge to draw on the walls? Now you can! I tried my hand at colouring the jungle pattern and it was a great deal of fun. But it was a bit time consuming, so I might need to name it a work in progress. But I don't mind the spot of colour on my wall, could be nice to watch it grow. The perfect thing with the A4s is that you can colour it while being comfortable at a table and attach it to the wall later. Perfect!

Metallic papers that bling your world

So you only have a black and white printer at home? No problem! Once you've started experimenting with printing on different coloured papers, you will have so many things to try out you will forget you ever wanted another printer.

In this post I will show you just how exciting metallic papers can be.

First you need to find papers to print on. I was tight with money and apparently had too much time on my hand so when I found this cheap and beautiful wrapping paper I decided to use that to print on. This of course meant I had to first cut it up into A4 sheets for it to fit into my printer. The result was pretty but I don't recommend it. Save yourself some trouble and buy paper already cut into A4s.

A lot of cutting...

Once you have your A4s you can start printing, and papering!

Nice right?

How to light up the jungle

There is no reason why the Pattern Printer Project should be limited to your walls. Especially when it is this easy to fold your own fab origami lamp. Who doesn't want their own glow in the dark tiger? The origami design is shamelessly stolen from

You'll need:

24 patterned A4 papers.
3 long sticks, bamboo other material
1 lampbulb with fitting (make sure it is a low energy lamp that doesn't get too hot)
paper glue
knife, ruler and cuttingboard (or scissors)
Some string
Folding bone (if you have one)

1. Cut of all the edges. I opted to cut just inside the white bit and not using the cutting marks. You'll need the overlap created for gluing on.

2. Take eight papers and glue them together two and two.

3. Shift the papers so that the repeats match up and glue them together. Putting the tiger in the middle means it will have a central position on the lamp.

4. Cut off the excess paper and move it to the other side to even it out. Glue down.

5. Touch up the edges and you end up with a nice big paper full of exotic fantasy.

6. Time to start folding! Start with folding the big paper in half, leaving a little extra margin for glue. Continue to fold the paper into eight parts. Every A4 should have a crease down the middle. Use the folding bone to get extra crisp folds.

7. Time for some diagonals! Fold first the paper one corner to half the paper, make four more parallell folds. Turn the paper and repeat.

8. Now to the tricky part. You should now be able to fold the paper to create the lampshape. The diamond shapes are supposed to go out and the vertical folds in. Don't give up! You can do it!

9. Congratulations! You've made one section of the lamp! Now make two more :-)
Glue the three pieces together.

10. Use the thread and needle to gather the top and bottom of the lamp. Glue the last edges together and whoop whoop! You are finnished with the lampshade!

Now it is time to channel your inner scout. Lets make a tripod for lamp legs! Grab your three sticks, fasten the string and start "weaving" over and under them. When you've done this for a while, do a few tight rounds between the sticks and fasten the string. Break the legs apart and put a litle piece of blu-tac under the feet so they won't slide on the floor. Fasten the lamp at the top and pull the lampshade over it! Voila! Magic!