Nina's Textile Trail 2

– Textiles 1: Mixed Media for Textiles

Project 1 – Folding & Crumpling – Exercise 5 Basic Crumpling Technique



The instruction here is to start with a piece of paper, approximately A3 size, crumple it and pull it open repeatedly until it is a sixteenth of its original size.   Although I had read “It is best done in lightweight glossy paper of the sort used to wrap flowers or package delicate items of clothing”, for some reason, I began crumpling with a piece of brown parcel paper.


It was floppy, not holding the creases well and very dull.

Having just received my assessment results for my first level one course and trying to raise my game from “Some evidence of creativity, little evidence of risk-taking…”, I sought an alternative, attempting to find something more visually interesting.

Some tissue paper with a slightly ‘crisp’ finish in a metallic colour seemed like a good choice and showed much more potential.


The bronze paper crumpled easily showing a myriad of creases, tiny peaks and troughs and lots of elasticity.  The slightly metallic surface emphasised the light and shadow increasing the visual texture.  I was excited by the properties and eager to see how it could be manipulated.

The same piece of paper was then made into a series of surfaces.

A single rib:


Multiple ribs:

Ribs radiating from a single point:

which was quite striking when viewed from the other side:


DSCF5010Circular ribs:


and embossing by pushing the paper into the contours of a reel of masking tape:


We were asked to explore repeats, placement and effect of scale.

Thinking about scale and developing linear creasing as explored in the the ribs radiating from a single point, (three photographs above), three sheets of A2 pink tissue were crumpled from a single point, creating quite a dynamic form (bigger than it appears!).  I love the texture, especially the linear crumpling, the delicate lines and crevices reflect the light and beg to be examined more closely and the tissue holds its form well.  The pink tissue that had been crumpled randomly before linear creasing was softer and more difficult to manipulate.

Drawing A3 with charcoal and graphite sticks capturing the texture of the tissue paper and the shadows.


Drawing onto A3  paper – pencil, graphite, Faber-Castell Pitt Artists pens shades of grey, coloured pencils, some water soluble.  Pleased with the energy and suggestion of fragility conveyed.

Thinking about scale and interested to try cellophane the above were crumpled from a central point starting with a square approximately 2/3 of a sheet of A4.

A combination of 2 x A2 sheets of white waxed tissue and several of the smaller green cellophane peaks from above.



The papers all had slightly different qualities.  The metallic tissue showed lots of detail in small crisp crumples and with the reflection of light off the shiny surface, photographed well.  The brown kraft paper rejected at the beginning became soft with crumpling and would be good to sew into but not hold form in the same way as the lighter papers.  The pink tissue creased well and the detail looking into the centre was wonderfully textural.

DSCF5027The white waxed tissue was firmer to crumple but held its shape well and the cellophane added a different dimension reflecting the light more dramatically and casting pale yellow and lime green shadows.  It was possible to crumple but with less definition than the other materials. 5/12/15) 5/12/15)

Origami Seed You Tube (Accessed 9/12/15) 5/12/15)

You Tube Vissemanu (Accessed 9/12/15)




4 thoughts on “Project 1 – Folding & Crumpling – Exercise 5 Basic Crumpling Technique

  1. Very interesting read – and the seed video lovely. Just yesterday I discovered a crumpling technique by Paul Jackson – used for ‘paper manipulation’ exercise in ATV. Seems this exercise is universal to both older courses and new. And it is really interesting to see what you have done with your prompts.

    • Thank you. I am really enjoying this. There do seem to be similarities between ATV and MMT but the style of both courses is so different from A Creative Approach, my first level one course, that I feel I’m only just blossoming into exploring ideas more freely and need a year to catch up with you and your coursemates! Happily inspired by you all.

  2. a charming approach to the exercises with some lovely materials

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