May 13., 2018 / Popup Cards
How to Fold Popup Cards
Learn how to fold Popup Cards.
Some folds are mountain folds, and some folds are valley folds. Fold them carefully in the correct direction so that the card will close and open smoothly. Patience is important, as the folds should be made slowly and methodically. This article will walk you through the steps.
Here is a diagram showing the score lines. Red lines indicate valley folds, while blue lines indicate mountain folds. Black lines are to be cut. Decorative overlay pieces are filled with lavender and pink . The card backing is the darker purple, which shows through the openings cut in the white base card. Refer to this diagram as you are folding your popup card.
Select Heavy Cardstock for Popup Cards
The first step to fold Popup Cards is to select heavy cardstock for the project before cutting. Folding popup cards will be much easier to do if the cardstock is heavier. The first popup card below was cut from 80# cardstock. Notice how the columns look very study, and the score lines are clean and crisp.
This next card was cut from 65# cardstock. It did cut well, but the columns in the design are weaker, and the score lines do not hold up as well as those made from heavier cardstock. You should use the heaviest cardstock that you have available when making popup cards. The heavier the cardstock, the easier it will be to fold the card neatly.
Make Solid Score Lines
To ensure that your score lines will be strong, and not tear during folding, make your score lines solid rather than dashed. Use a scoring tool, embossing tool, engraving tool, or set your blade to a very shallow depth (as for cutting lightweight paper) and a very light pressure, and cut with your blade. Use a bone folder to make clean folds on the score lines. Popup Card templates or cutting files generally distinguish between mountain and valley fold lines using colors. You may not see a distinction between the different types of folds in an SVG cutting file. The following steps will help you know how to fold a popup card after cutting the SVG file on your cutter.
Fold Popup – Valley Folds
The valley score lines at the center of the card should be folded first. Pinch the card from the back side of the card on the center fold line. Then find the score lines at the top of each main layer and pinch them from the back as well. Use a bone folder on each of the score lines to make a nice, crisp fold.
Each of the folds at the bottom of a pillar is a valley fold as well. Pinch these folds from the back of the card.
Fold Popup – Mountain Folds
Pinch the mountain folds together on the score lines from the front. Mountain folds are at the top of each pillar, and at the center of the top layer. Make sure that each of the folds are at a 90 degree angle before trying to close the card.
Fold Popup – Gently Press the Back of the Card Towards the Front
Check all of the folds from front and back sides.
Gently press the back of the card towards the front of the card with many small movements, until the card folds flat. Check all inside folds to make sure each fold is going in the correct direction, and each piece is in place. Open and fold the card to make sure that the card opens and closes as it should.
Check both sides of the card.
If everything is in place, burnish all folds so that the card lies perfectly flat.
Fold Popup – Open and Close the Card
Open and close the popup card to check it, and make sure that it opens the way it should. It should stay open on its own, before adding the backing and decorations.
Add the Backing to the Card
Fold the card backing along the score line and burnish well so that it folds flat. Open the backing card. With the popup card closed, line up the folded edge of the card with the center of the open backing.
Line up the folded card with the center of the backing card.Next, add glue around the outside edges of the card, as well as around the portion of the card that will not be popping up. Close the backing over the glued inside portion, and hold in place until the glue is dry.
Open the backing to the other side. Add glue only to the portion of the inside card that is not popping up. Avoid getting glue on the column pieces.
Close the card and press it flat until the glue has dried.
Decorate Your Popup Card
The free cutting file includes all of the alternate numbers and letters to customize the popup birthday card for your needs. You can download the free SVG, MTC, PVGC, and FCM cutting files from the library here.
Would you like to have the FREE cutting file for this Happy Birthday Popup Card?
You may get it and some of my other FREE SVG projects in my FREE Resource Library.
>> HOW TO ENTER THE FREE RESOURCE LIBRARY <<
This resource library is open to everyone for free. All you need is the password to get in, which you can get by filling out the form below.
If you already have your password, enter the resource library here.
barb / June 30, 2018., 10:13 am
Thanks so much Julie. Great website! You have been busy!!!
craftymusician / June 30, 2018., 10:43 am
Thanks so much for your encouragement! It is a new adventure for me.
Sheila / March 22, 2023., 6:20 am
Love your beautiful projects