Note: Detailed instructions for this project were published on Make on November 15, 2015. Please see “Cut and Fold a Pop-Up Snowflake Greeting Card.” They are now updated on Make: Projects.

Like most self-respecting nerds, I love fractals. So what better way to celebrate winter than creating a fun card based on the famous Koch Snowflake (also known as the Koch star and island)!

fractal is a geometric figure that has some pretty awesome special features. They have “self symmetry,” creating detailed repeating patterns that are often described as “the same from near as from far.” They’re found all over the place in nature and are used in math and science in a variety of applications. One of the easiest to create by hand, and also one of the easiest to understand, is the Koch Snowflake. First described by Helge von Koch in 1904, this fractal is based on an equilateral triangle. To build it one, you create an equilateral triangle, then remove 1/3 of one side of the triangle and replace it with an new, smaller equilateral triangle. You repeat this process on each side, then repeat it on each side of each new triangle, and so on. The result is a shape that can literally have infinite perimeter, but finite area. Cool right?

So you start the project by making a Koch snowflake on cardstock and using it as a template.

So, for an extra nerdy card, I used the Koch Snowflake shape and created a fun, glittery pop up. To do this, just trace the template onto a card and cut around the shape with a craft knife, leaving the shape attached to the base at a few points. Then fold the pop up in the opposite direction of the card, creasing the contact points carefully. Finish by backing with contrasting cardstock to create the front of your 4.24″ x 5.5″ card.

From there you can get creative. I like to make a second, smaller Koch snoflake and cut it from the center of the first popup. You can also trace the template onto craft foam and cut it out. Attach that to an acrylic block and you have a custom stamp!

Want to save some time? Print the images below onto cardstock and cut until your heart’s content!

If you have a digital cutter, like a Silhouette or Cricut, this all becomes very easy, indeed! All you need to do is download the appropriate DXF or SVG file and let your computer do the work for you! You may opt to throw in a perforation or scoring line down the center when you cut to make folding easier, but I just used my Scoring Board. Now you can make cards for all your nerdy friends!! Huzzah!

Anyway, I hope you have fun. Be sure to share pictures of your cards!

This post was originally published DECEMBER 31, 2013 at  http://klcnj.blogspot.com/2013/12/koch-snowflake-cards.html

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