Timeless Thoughts: Pop-up books

Timeless Thoughts

Timeless Thoughts is a monthly linkup hosted by Georgie and Tara, where bloggers write about something from their past – it could be an item, a place, an event – anything that evokes a trip down memory lane. Timeless Thoughts is held on the first Saturday of the month, and runs for two weeks.

Pop-up books! I loved them when I was a kid. They were incredibly simple, most of the time, but every now and then I came across a more intricate, detailed one.

One of my favourite pop-up books that I owned wasn’t really a book. But it was a pop-up dolls house, and I actually found someone’s blog post about it! It looked like a book but it only had enough ‘pages’ to fill out the rooms of a standard house. The ends of the book had ribbon that you could tie together when the book was open, to hold the dolls house open. I found it on Amazon as well.

I often liked looking at pop-up books in libraries, but one thing I did hate about them was that people seriously couldn’t look after the books properly. Parts of the pop-up features were torn, or folded incorrectly when the book closed. One thing I found interesting was that sometimes the pop-up feature was not entirely made of the holes that seemed to be cut out of the pages. Sometimes there were additional parts glued on.

A pretty complex pop-up book of a green-and-blue coloured castle
A funky Wizard of Oz castle. Image from Angela’s Anxious Life
A pop-up book open to a page with a snowflake
Pop-up snowflake. Image from Sarah Louise Matthews

Pop-up books really brought books to life, and some books had additional fun and interactive parts like envelopes to open, tabs to pull, and other parts to fold or unfold. They made it a joy to read when you were very young. Even as you got older, sometimes you still came across pop-up books with more advanced stories. I think there could be a market for adult pop-up books, just like adult colouring books have become a hit. ;)

A pop-up book open to a page with a pop-up house in the middle
Cute small pop-up house. Image from Natalie Simonis Research
A cute pop-up book open to a page with a vertically-standing tree
Cute and mysterious tree in pop-up book. Image from Creative + Fortitude

I may have tried to make my own pop-up book at some point. It was certainly difficult. I still see pop-up cards in gift stores, some of which are handmade and so incredibly detailed and fragile. I suppose pop-up books may have been replaced in part by virtual realities…

Did you ever like pop-up books?

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Comments on this post

OMG, I used to love pop-up books when I was younger. I liked it best when they had loads going on on each page. I remember this one about a mouse that had tonnes of mini letters and envelopes and pockets inside, and it was so exciting. I can’t imagine getting that excited over something like that now though! But there are some really innovative ones that wow me!

I’m sure I must have tried to make one at some point. It’d be so cool to be able to do that. Maybe someday…

I never owned any pop up books, but my best friend had this collection of pop up books and we used to love sitting for hours playing with them!

Pop-up cards is a different story. I still get tempted to purchase a pop up card as gift for a friend’s birthday but then they are a bit cumbersome to handle and you can’t personalize them!

Oh yeah! Pop-up cards are lovely but sometimes there is no room to write on the card…!

I used to love pop-up books when I was younger! I can’t name them from the top of my head but they always brought the stories to life. Especially those ones that were a mix of pop-up and just a normal book – so the only pages that pop-up were those “WOW” moments haha!

I actually remember making pop-up cards for friends when I was younger more than reading actual pop up books. Haha, they were always so fun to make!

I loved pop-up books! I don’t think I was as much interested in the story as I was with the artwork and illustrations but it definitely made reading a blast for my younger self.

I don’t think I ever made one. I wasn’t the craftiest person ever and I was constantly comparing my work to that of my classmates’.

Oh my goodness! I remembered adoring them as a kid. The castle dollhouse looks amazing! I know that would’ve been my favorite if I was still a kid XD. I remembered a class activity where we had to make a popup book back then. It was fun, but it took a lot of mechanics to figure it out.

I love pop up books, especially beautiful ones that have a lot of thought behind them! I remember having a lot of them and loving the hell out of them. I’m glad to go through this timeless journey with you and others too!

I used to go through every book in the childrens section of the library until I found a book with pop-ups or flaps. I loved them!

You’ve just reminded me about a really intricate pop up book I had when I was a child! It was The Hunchback of Notre Dame (just Googled it, you can still get it on ebay!) and what’s really funny is I have no idea what the story is to The Hunchback which means I clearly didn’t pay attention to writing in the book!

My brother once made pop-up cards for a school project and I hope that someday he gets to illustrate a children’s pop-up book because it would be amazing.

I’m not sure why, but I was never really a fan of pop-up books. I think I thought it was annoying how you always had to fold it back correctly to make sure that the pop-up pieces didn’t get messed up. Or maybe I just never saw really cool ones, because that Wizard of Oz pop-up book looks really neat!

I do remember liking books that had cut outs. One of my favorite children’s books was one about a family of rabbits, and the mom was trying to get her bunnies to go to bed. Each page had a cutout that built off the page after it, and as you flipped through it revealed a bigger picture. I thought that was the coolest. :P

Oh I love those cutout books! :D I read some of them when I was younger and really liked them too.

I loved pop up books! I remember loving this Peter Rabbit one. I kinda agree with there being a market for adult ones! And that doll house one…I swear it looks familiar. Maybe I had seen it before. *shrugs* Super cool though!

I liked pop-up books! I thought they were a lot of fun and created an interactive experience, which I liked. Of course, that then meant I’d want to figure out how exactly they were made. :p A teacher of mine liked them, too, later in my life, and a project for the class wound up being that we had to make our own.

I…got too annoyed with mine. XD

I love pop-up books! I may have owned one or two when I was a child, but I remember pop-up birthday greeting cards more! Have you seen one of those? Sometimes, there’s music, too! Reminds me of childhood. :D

Pop-up books are so cool! I liked them as a kid, and I still do. Every time I open one, it never ceases to amaze me how anybody could create something this complex XD

I never attempted to make one myself. Way out of my skill range and patience level! Though I find the books to be cool, I don’t like the pop-up cards much because it makes writing harder.