Left: Japanese lift top box
Right: Japanese lift top box with inserts
On Broadway, there are several traditions that happen when one of the actors leaves the production. On the final performance, the cast usually sings the song Happy Trails before the curtain raises on the final performance of the leaving actor. Another tradition, especially if the actor is an understudying a role in the show, is to give the actor copies of the program inserts (stuffers) as a memento of their participation in the show.
One of the problems with receiving the inserts is that they are usually loose pieces of paper. Many Broadway shows simply recycle the inserts when the actor leaves the show. For our production, I used to make notepads by using padding solution to glue all of the loose pieces of paper into one solid notepad. We would hand a couple of the notepads to the exiting actor for their own personal use.
For our current production, I have been making handmade boxes to hold the inserts so that actors could have a nicer way to keep their inserts as they use them for scratch paper. This past weekend, I made a prototype for one size of the inserts. It is simple a lift top box to hold the loose inserts inside.
Notice the dimension of the boxes--there is a 1/8th inch reveal of the bottom tray
Here are the two prototypes of boxes that I made for one type of inserts. I am a little partial to the blue box. Both boxes use papers from a marbler in Germany that I will be featuring next week. I am still waiting for his permission to feature him online.
The top and bottom trays are covered in bookcloth and the decorative paper is cut to size.
These boxes are based on a Japanese design that I discovered on my last trip to Japan. I will detail the differences between Western style boxes and Japanese style boxes in a later post. Right now, I just want to bask in their beauty.