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Corrugated Creations. Part 1

by Daniel on February 29th, 2012

A Brief Preface …

While talking to my good friend Denise the other day, I happened to mention Parallel Universe’s cardboard patterns — the subject of this week’s review. She wondered how I could support anyone trying to improve on a large cardboard box — the first original toy (the apple tree in the Garden of Eden came packaged in one). She threatened to have me reported to P.E.T.L.C.B. (People for the Ethical Treatment of Large Cardboard Boxes). However, despite her threats, I persevered. Frankly, I knew in my heart that the boxes had taken the first step — they WANTED to change.

Now, on with the review…

Mike Lambert, Carolyn Yost, and Bill Riseborough comprise the Parallel Universe Corporation, a burgeoning young company dedicated to changing the way we look at cardboard boxes. With Carolyn’s background in kitchen remodeling and Mike’s in the architecture, design, and construction of new homes, the couple have had ample opportunity to witness large appliance boxes being discarded as waste. Because cardboard is such a durable and project-friendly material, it seemed senseless to just throw the boxes out. But what could they do with them?

I think I can, I think I can …

Following an exhaustive series of crude play-houses for their children, Carolyn asked Mike if he could design something a little more interesting to do with the appliance boxes. “A couple of days later,” Mike explains, “I [produced] a small [cardboard] model of a cartoon-style train — sort of ‘The Little Engine That Could’ — and we thought we might be onto something. We asked Bill Riseborough to join us, a longtime friend and work associate whose background in graphic design and quirky mind suited our project.” In less than a year, the trio had successfully assembled approximately fourteen full-sized prototypes of cardboard toys ready for manufacturing.

How does a Parallel Universe cardboard pattern work? Let’s say you’ve just purchased a new refrigerator and a washer/dryer combo; we’ll assume they came in boxes. By adding a utility knife, a pattern tracing wheel, a straight edge, and a P.U.C. tissue pattern, you’ve got yourself one very cool castle. But even if you haven’t dropped a wad on a major appliances lately, don’t fret! Cardboard is readily available through local transport companies, appliance and furniture stores — usually free of charge.

Tape the Parallel Universe tissue pattern to the flattened cardboard and trace it with the pattern wheel. Remove the tissue paper, cut along the perforated lines with the utility knife, and assemble the castle according the directions. Voila!! A castle impressive enough to rival any overpriced, preconstructed, toy store model.

From → Communication

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