Dec. 9, 2011— -- We all love to show off our trophies, and a deer head mounted over a fireplace mantel is a sure conversation starter, or stopper. But even those who hate the idea of animal parts hanging in their living rooms and shudder at the thought of slaying a deer can still have a "killer" trophy, and make a statement too, with Foldeer. It's a handmade paper toy deer head -- complete with antlers -- that you build yourself.
About 25½ inches when assembled, Foldeer sprang from the mind of Mathieu Roth, 27, a web designer in Strasbourg, France.
"I'd been working with paper toys, experimenting with special and crazy shapes," Roth said in an email to ABCNews.com.
Foldeer began while Roth was creating a special party costume that called for horns.
"I could have cut down and used branches," Roth said, "but I knew how to create this very graphic shape out of paper. I built them and glued them to a crafted pair of glasses. I guess that was the first prototype of Foldeer."
Several more prototypes and a lot of time later, Foldeer was born. "Maybe [Foldeer] was an act of revenge," Roth mused, "a replacement for those dead heads hanging in my father's house. He was a hunter."
Available in a variety of colors and even plain white, which can then be painted and styled according to one's taste, Foldeer can be ordered on Etsy, and ships from France (allow about two weeks). Prices range from about $62 to $83.
A word of caution: Foldeer is not for the faint of heart, or anyone too pressed for time. It takes at least 2½ hours to assemble its 18 pieces, which fit together like a puzzle. "It will require your hands, a few neurons and coffee," the How To section of the website counsels.
Numbers on the flaps indicate what needs to be glued to what. Regular dotted lines mean fold the piece of paper so that the line is inside a valley, while an irregular dotted line means fold the paper like a mountain. A good liquid glue, which is included in an assembly pack along with binder clips, instructions and the precut paper pieces, is needed for the structure to maintain proper rigidity. Glue sticks won't work. Roth recommends working as much as possible on different big pieces at once.
"I tried hard to have the minimum number of pieces, and with the easiest way to glue everything together," said Roth, who experimented with different kinds of paper until he found one with the right balance of resistance and weight.
"I know that a lot of people would like to buy a finished product. Maybe one day we could think about molding it in plastic, but the concept ... would be lost. The feeling and image of Foldeer fits well with paper."
And whoever said keeping an "ecological conscience" was easy?
"I guess you kind of have to 'earn' Foldeer," Roth said.