“Long ago in the town of Bethlehem, a child was born on a bright and starry night.” In this review we will take a closer look at Robert Sabuda’s latest Christmas pop-up title: The Christmas Story. A beautiful pop-up book about the birth of Jesus Christ shown in a decor of white pop-ups combined with gold and pearlescent details. Sabuda’s last Christmas pop-up title Winter’s Tale, was published in 2005 and this new Christmas pop-up title is something that we as collectors all looked forward to. The Christmas Story is an even bigger pop-up book and has the same style and white paper-cut pop-up designs like we’ve seen before in Robert Sabuda’s other Christmas pop-up books.
A great match for a classic
The Christmas Story is a pop-up book that already feels like a classic pop-up title. Sabuda’s “plain white style” combined with a classic story like The First Christmas is a great match. The details of the characters and cut-outs are beautiful and subtle. For those who are a fan Sabuda’s angel pop-up designs, this book features even more detailed and beautiful angels! The size of the book which is a bit bigger than Winter in White and The 12 Days of Christmas and contains 6 main large pop-up spreads. Every spread is decorated with gold and pearlescent foil that contributes to the luxury look and feel of this book.
Robert Sabuda’s very first pop-up book, the classic and collectable Christmas Alphabet, was the start of a popular series of Christmas pop-up books that all have in common that there’s no artwork used but only plain (mostly white) paper. This pure way of paper engineering uses no “graphic tricks” and is based on shapes, contours and pop-up structure. A very effective and honest way to display the art and complexity of paper engineering without using graphics or artwork.
Every page in this book uses it’s own technique and is amazing in a different way. For example the star that rises up above the three wise men. It’s a rotating star that uses the same technique as we have already seen in the shape of a tornado in Sabuda’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Or the way the stable folds out and sets every character in place, including the characters inside the stable. Most pop-ups are big, detailed and solid and contain lots of layers to build the scene and characters. All those layers fold in-and-out with ease and feel like a strong structure. There also are a lot of pulling mechanics hidden underneath the pages that pull elements into place.
We are very excited about this new Christmas title by Robert Sabuda! We did our best to capture the beauty of this pop-up book but like most pop-up books, the best way to experience it is by holding the book yourself!
Order at Amazon: The Christmas Story
Author and paper engineering: Robert Sabuda
Additional design: Simon Arizpe and Shelby Arnold
Published by Candlewick Press