Escape The Book Nook
During the lockdown period of 2020, and whilst juggling work and a project known as flatpak (notably, the distribution of this), I didn't start baking banana bread. I didn't really even take up much exercise. Like the rest of the world, I was feeling imprisoned; trapped and scared at home.
On a whim, I started making a small book nook. These were objects that I had seen online and seemed fascinated by - a small snapshot room from a doll's house if you like.
The one I'd been given was a library and I loved making it. As I sat there, building these tiny, tiny books, clocking up the hours, my mind began to wander. Wouldn't this be a fantastic environment for a miniature escape room? Something that you could decorate and build, and then play and then enjoy? Too many games of mine set in their boxes tucked away, never on show. What if I could build something that was visually appealing and at the same time could be played, then displayed? The cogs started whirring but with other projects lined up, and it was at the back of my priorities.
But then one mid afternoon in 2022, whilst idly looking at my models again, the image came to me of a crime scene in an artist's studio. It came fully fledged and fully formed; I could see some of the puzzles - I could even see the crime. I could see how I could hide puzzles within miniature items and set my challenge - could I make an escape room book nook where you really did have to build it in order to solve it? It was quite the challenge.
It was so pleasurable, as I handcrafted the furniture and the frames from the ground up. There are easier ways to build the room frame for example, but I wanted something that you could click into place easily without a heavy level of glue. In fact, I looked at all the areas of challenge within my original models (I'd made three by now) and looked at how I could improve them, losing the items that had taken forever to make, yet had a very small visual appeal. I looked at how I could utilise materials collectively together so that there was little waste.
I managed to make a model that probably takes between two to four hours to build, depending on your craftsmanship. However also it's completely adaptable. I've used MDF so it can be painted in ordinary paints in the style that you want, or you can leave it blank. I created some garish hand designed wallpaper, and created a mock wooden floor for this artist studio.
I'm so pleased with the end result and the fact that it can pack up into a small little letterbox-sized box that I'm launching it as my next Kickstarter in 2023.
I'd love you to follow along for the journey by clicking on the Escape The Book Nook Kickstarter link below.
I'll be making some construction videos, as soon as I've completed all of the project work for Notable Remains, and it heads off to the printers.
I am actively seeking out crafters and model makers to make/play my game and suggest improvements. Get in touch if this is you!
In addition, I have one spare sample kit that I would love to send out to one random person who has bought something from the Enigmailed website during December 2022.
It could be anything you like, small or large that you will be entered into the draw (subscribers don't worry, you're already included). And one lucky person on the first of January will have their name drawn and receive a puzzle kit. that takes a few hours to build, and at least one hour to solve. Enjoy!
DISCLAIMER: The model shown in these pictures is from the original project, so is a definite work in progress. Who would have a yellow chair‽