The Art of Ornamental Orange Peeling (1905)

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“It is surpising what can be done with the conventional orange”.

Images from an article about an unusual form of sculpture, found in a 1905 issue of American Homes and Gardens magazine.

Housed at: Internet Archive | From: Smithsonian Libraries
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Fig. 1 shows the initial stage in making four slits at right angles from the top, but not quite to the bottom of the peel, beneath which the thumb is inserted to separate them from the body of the fruit.

Fig. 2 shows how thin strips are cut from the sides of the four main sections, which are cut again from the top to the bottom, and from the bottom to the top, alternately, so as to form one continuous strip of small leaves, that with gentle pulling will lengthen into a goodly strip of peel.

Fig. 3 shows how the strips can be converted into all kinds of artistic effects.


Fig. 4 shows four plaited bands which are easily made, though care has to be exercised so that the chain will not break.


Fig. 5 shows a fancy piece of carving in the form of a Japanese house-boat, and is more difficult to make than the preceding designs.


Fig. 6 represents a crown with the greater part of the fruit left bare, while the crown is carved out of the peel at the top.


Fig. 7 shows the human face, which is quite a simple design to make, and the only parts added are the ears.


Fig. 8 is a representation of loaves of bread and cake, and is made by careful peeling.

Fig. 9 represents the carving of a pig, which is realistic in the results attained.


Fig. 10 shows a realistic and a life-like design in the carving of a serpent which is made by the pulling away of the strips after they have been cut.


Fig. 11 shows oranges peeled in a similar manner to Fig. 10 and placed on receptacles.


Fig. 12 presents a treatment of the orange similar to Fig. 11, but in a more elaborate manner.


Fig. 13 shows a pyramidal centerpiece for a table decoration.


Fig. 14 shows another table decoration in a manner similar to the preceding design, but massed in greater form.


Fig. 15 shows the third picture of the pyramid and its progress.


Fig. 16 presents the pyramid complete, and it certainly produces a novel and effective decoration for any Christmas or festival occasion, and is one that can be easily made if one has the time.