Smoky has been watching Chris doing Origami and thought he’d try it with my duvet, I think all the folding was too much, sleep is a much better idea!
I don’t keep a lot of my origami stuff, but here’s one little item that’s stayed around for a while. It’s a vase made from folding instructions at origami-instructions.com. You start off by creasing a square into thirds. You have to be careful when raising the finished piece, but this one, made from some old birthday wrapping paper turned out well. Here’s the top:
I can’t spend forever making origami cranes, I decided. I need to branch out and do siomething different. And what did I plump for but this–an origami swan.
‘Twas a decision fraught with difficulty. My first attempt, following the instructions in Eric Kenneway’s classic, Complete Origami, resulted in a swan that looked more drunk than elegant. Its head lolled to one side and threatened at any minute to pull the rest of its body to the floor in a dishevelled heap. I couldn’t work out what had gone wrong. I had followed the diagrams perfectly. To be fair, I couldn’t blame Eric Kenneway himself, since the drawings for this model had the name of a certain ‘John S. Smith’ appended to them. The pseudonym for an embarrassed E. Kenneway perhaps, after having folded one too many sozzled swans? We’ll never know. Help, however, was at hand via the imaginatively titled Origami by Zulal Ature-Scheele. This book is full of colour photos and simple instructions, which don’t mention such origami technicalities as outside reverse folds or the preliminary base (these things are used–they’re just not explicitly named) and I finally produced a good and upright swan, seen above, drifting down the tinfoil river.
Eric Kenneways book, by the way, begins the swan page by telling you to ‘use a square of white paper’, but then provides a photo of a completed swan fashioned from black paper. Sometimes I feel Kennway/Smith is just being contrary for the sake of it.
The black tissue-like paper I used was from the box that my latest pair of slippers came in. The most tasteful materials, it seems, crop up in the most unlikely places.
Here’s my first attempt at an origami spider. Strictly speaking, it’s a kirigami spider, because it involves not just folding but a few simple cuts to the paper too. If you don’t make the cuts, you’ll end up with a spider that only has four legs. In other words, you won’t be able to make a spider at all and you’ll have to be content with a frog. Dash it, origami’s so unfair, isn’t it?
If origami were a person, he (yeah, it would have to be a ‘he’) would be a member of the Awkward Squad. Because it can be deiberately obtuse at times.
Origami, in case you’re not familiar with it, has a number of bases, which are the starting points for most of the models you can make. The waterbomb base, sensibly enough, is the start point for the waterbomb, a little cube that you can fill with flour or water and then drop from an upstairs window on the head of an unsuspecting passer-by in the street. As good a way of getting sued or clobbered as any other, I guess. (So who said origami was boring, huh?)
But then it gets tricky:
- To make a spider, you start with the frog base.
- To make a cat, or a Scottie dog, you start with a fish base.
- To make a swan, you start with the kite base.
- To make a trangular box, you start with a circle.
When in doubt, though, you can always abandon it, scrunch the paper into a ball, and practice target shooting a the waste basket. Or make lots of origami confetti, a nice easy project for total beginners. Why not give it a try sometime? You know you want to 🙂