I bought a matchbox collection at an estate sale! The Factory is in production! 2017

Welcome to the MINIATURE CRANKIE FEST!  The scrolls range in size from 3/8" to five inches high.  The crankie boxes are made from cardboard, wood or tin.

There is one example below from the 19th century from the collection of Professor Erkki Huhtamo.  For more examples of 19th century toy or souvenir moving panoramas visit these pages: SMALL MOVING PANORAMAS and THE COLLECTION OF ERKKI HUHTAMO.

From Toronto, Paula Huisman used wing nuts for the tiny cranks - brilliant!  The boxes are covered with Japanese paper called "chiyogami"  and the scrolls are Japanese paper as well. Paula made the boxes from Eska board. Follow her on Instagram at glasscopperpaperwood.

Mini Crankies from Paul Fleischman
From California, more mini crankies from Paul Fleischman! See the additional video below. Lots of inspiration here! 2020
Paul Fleischman's Matchbox Crankie Theaters
Award-winning author Paul Fleischman demonstrates 3 matchbox crankies and how to make them. I'm inspired and I hope he makes more!
The Calling Crankie by Jessica White
Hand-printed scroll housed in a wooden box with a hand-cranking mechanism, all individually made in house, from the hand-set metal type to the little rivets that let the handles spin as you crank to your heart's desire. The story is about a city squirrel that follows a calling, eventually finding itself at the mountains; The quote comes from John Muir. Linoleum cut printed on Japanese Kozo paper, printed in an edition of 30. Not including the handles, it measures 5" high by 7" wide.
The Longest Night
Short and sweet.
Naomi Harvey is a Gaelic singer, musician and crankie artist from Glasgow, UK. This is simply adorable.
"War in South Africa" a toy moving panorama made in England 1899 (trademark J.W.R.). The beautifully ornate box is metal. The paper scroll is about 2" high and the spindles are metal. From the collection of Professor Erkki Huhtamo. Photo by Sue Truman
This is the back of "The War in South Africa". Extremely rare, possibly only two survive. No video available because it was too fragile to crank but grateful to Erkki Huhtamo for sharing. Photo by Sue Truman.
"Follow Me" Matchbox Crankie
Inspired by the matchbox crankie made by Susan Reid of VT, I crafted this little gift for Scottish Gaelic singer/musician Naomi Harvey in 2012. She took it home to Scotland and her band Lurach put music to it - love it!
Daisies White
Ellen Gozion from North Carolina made this crankie in a bit over one hour. She covered a cardboard beer box with nice paper and used paper towel tubes for spindles. The scroll is paper with crayons and paint. So sweet!
This match box crankie was made by Susan Reid from Vermont. The picture came from Anna and Elizabeth's Crankie Girls blog in 2011. This is where I got the idea to make match box crankies. Some day I will get to meet Susan Reid to thank her!
Altoid Tin Crankie
Tony Mates of Seattle made this sweet and very useful crankie from an Altoid tin. It includes a map of the Bay area!
The Mouse's Voyage
A miniature crankie by illustrator, cartoonist and musician John Lechner from Boston, MA. Read more about his crankies at
My husband, Richard Twomey, made this really tiny crankie for me for Christmas, 2018. What a surprise. The scroll is 3/8" high and made from tissue paper. This scroll is a draft, I am experimenting with different materials. It is so small that one needs a special camera lens to film it!
These cute little matchboxes were painted by Ema Youcha at the John C. Campbell Folk School, October, 2019.

This page was first in created in 2014, updated 2020. Sue Truman