Boxing Miniatures

These delightful artist’s book miniatures are new acquisitions for Special Collections at ISU Library.  Some of them are enclosed in their own artist’s box, while others are not.  As we so often do with artist’s books, we will be building boxes for boxes.  In this case, the box will not only protect the artist’s box in which the book was originally housed, but the box will give the miniature more bulk on the shelf so it doesn’t get lost.  We order CMI boxes in a standard size (about 215 mm x 145 mm) and then create foam inserts to nestle around the miniatures.

Flora, Fists, Fauna & Follies (Printer's Ornaments) by Claire Bolton (1990-1992)
American Birds by Amanda Epstein (1979)
The Garden by Andrew Marvel (1981)
Specimens: From Rags to Rushes by Jim Yarnell (1983)
Kwaidan: Jikininki by Lafcadio Hearn (1969)


  1. These are adorable. I find myself drawn to miniature objects so much more now that I work with oversize objects on a daily basis.

    What kind of foam do you use? What tool do you use to make those very small cuts?

    thank you-

  2. I never used to find miniatures all that interesting, but the ones we’ve been seeing lately have so many additional, charming features — materials, media — that I have been won over. And really, that book that is nearly dime-sized? Impossible not to be impressed by that.

    We use ethafoam, and sometime volara when the book is very fragile. At this size, we can cut the foam with a sharp scalpel.

    For larger blocks of ethafoam, I typically use a square-tipped vegetable chopping knife.

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