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The Basics of Bandboxing: A cross-curricular unit

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19 MB|10 pages
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Welcome to the world of Bandboxing! A traditional cross-curricular technique with roots dating back to the mid 18th century. This project combines historical background with the cunning creativity of Colonial America.

Bandboxes were a familiar form of storage for nearly a hundred years beginning in the mid-eighteenth century. Slipped into a drawstring bag, they were the carry-on luggage of their day. They went out of style as transportation turned from horse and carriage to train and steamboat. Too fragile for the newer modes of transport, they were banished to attics…too out of style to be seen with but too pretty and too useful to throw out. Most of the extant samples of wallpaper used in our young nation cover bandboxes. The current interest in American decorative arts has brought bandboxes out of their attic exile.

During this project, students will start with basic items found around the house, cardboard or if you are feeling fancy chip board and create three-dimensional boxes. After completion of the boxes, students will design and paint paper that will then be affixed to the boxes themselves using paste. After hardening these boxes become as strong as steal thanks to the advancement on the technique that is found in this unit.

Made correctly, bandboxes tell the story of the artist or patron. Every line or item used makes a great way to remember a movement, day or adventure. For more information this project or for many student examples with different project ideas, contact me directly.

A project designed to showcase just about any style of artwork, from paintings to stencils to abstract work and even sculpture! Teachers think about this as a cross-disciplinary project and combine it with a geometry lesson or take the students into the basic math class to learn about volume. This project can even be adapted to add things for music or how about a spin on a favorite piece of literature**.

Check back monthly for additions to this technique including new discounted templates and ideas to bring back this ever-expanding style.

**** English teachers please note: This project does involve taking old books and giving them a new home so it may not be for the faint of heart.
Total Pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
2 Weeks
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John Zollo




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