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Attaching Pop Up Mechanisms with Tabs and Slots {Throwback Thursday}

Welcome to Throwback Thursday week 5, with another revised and updated post from the very beginning of Extreme Cards and Papercrafting.

How to Make Pop Up Cards Tutorial
This is Lesson 5 in a series of step by step tutorials on How to Make Pop Ups. 

Now that we have looked at a couple different kinds of pop up mechanisms, you may be wondering how to attach those separately-cut pieces to your base card.

One option is:
Tabs and Slots

What are tabs and slots?

Sample one: visible tabs
Print out (or draw your own) box mechanisms as shown and cut out.
Fold the base card in half and glue the tabs to the shaded areas.

Sample two: tabs turned to the inside

Sample three: tabs glued though a slot
Cut the two slots, slide the tabs through the slots and glue to the outside of the card.
If you use this tabs and slots you will need something on the outside of the card to cover the tabs.

What happens when you move the tabs closer or further from the center fold of the base card?
The pop up box changes shape.

From left to right, these are sample 4, sample 1, and sample 5.

Sample four: tabs moved toward the outer edges of the card

Sample five: tabs moved toward the fold of the card


The addition of tabs and slots to your pop up design takes a bit of thought. You need to consider both function and appearance. The tab or tabs must be large enough to support the pop up, yet hidden from view (or incorporated as a design element).

Here is an example with hidden tabs. (Like sample 5). The cake has tabs on either side.

They are folded under and glued to the card under the cake. (Bonus: can you see that the candles use a v-fold?)

Template by Robert Sabuda

This Easter Egg has side tabs slotted through the card.

pop up easter egg

The center of the daffodils are tabbed and slotted through the card.

More examples of Tabs and Slots