Origami History

The Origami Beginning

Origami is the art of paper folding. It is a great way to spend time creating beautiful things and a great hobby to enjoy.

So where does origami come from? Where did it get its start?

Origami History

Ori in Japanese means paper and gami in Japanese means folding. So Origami means to fold paper.

Before origami could be developed it had to be invented. The person who did that was a Chinese man named Cai Lun who lived under the Han Dynasty in the second century around 105 AD. He came up with a way to make paper.

At first paper was difficult to make and very expensive. But it was fabricated and used in monasteries to record all sorts of information.

It is Monks who brought paper from China to Japan. And it is in Japan where someone got the bright idea to start folding it.

Paper folding was done for ceremonial things like weddings and grand occasions. The “noshi” or folded paper was given as a gift and was even thought to bring good luck among samurai warriors.

Butterfly origami, for example, were traditional wedding gifts.

As the technique of making paper migrated along the Silk road west, paper found it s way into Europe through Spain. Spain at the time, was occupied by the Moors who brought their creativity to paper folding.

Though paper and paper folding took hold in Europe, it is cloth folding, like folding napkins, that was popular in the elite class.

While Europe was exposed to paper folding, it was really the Japanese who made origami the phenomenon and popular art form it has become today.

Contemporary Origami History

In contemporary times, it is a Japanese artist by the name of Akira Yoshizawa, a world master with over 50000 creative designs, who established origami as the artistic movement it is today.

He met a rich benefactor in New York, Lillian Oppenheimer who founded the Origami center in New York in 1958. From there folding groups appeared all over the world.

Some of the notable groups today include Origami USA, the British Origami Society, Nippon Origami Association, Japanese Origami Art Society, and the Israeli Origami Center.

There are master origami folders through out the world and origami is not only an art form but it is also a business.

Origami masters have worked to design heart stents for medicine and worked on all sorts of industrial design ideas.

Origami is a great hobby, and if you get good enough, can be a great way to make a living.

The Fine Art of Giving Tips

A Time of Giving

As the holidays approach, it is time to reflect on the fine art of giving. Can there possibly be a better way to express your gratitude and love? I think not.

Handmade Gifts

With handmade gifts and all things origami, each pair of earrings and other imaginative creations made from decorative paper, express one’s own individuality and attempt to touch the hearts of others. The act of creating something of beauty with one’s hands provides the ultimate sense of satisfaction and accomplishment.

Origami Earrings

When designing a pair of earrings, there is much thought given to the color and quality of the origami paper, how the beads or crystals will enhance the final assembly, in what order or pattern they will be strung, and whether they will be highlighted in gold or silver. Crystals and beads have been attributed with certain spiritual properties such as healing, promoting good health, harmony, mental clarity, accepting love and having a positive outlook on life. These are some of the elements imbued in handmade origami jewelry and gifts.

The Art of Origami

According to Nick Robinson’s, “Art, Origami & Education,” We need to recognize and study with the great masters who are at one with the paper, the folds and the final result. In such masters’ hands the paper almost folds itself in an aesthetic dance of the hands to achieve a result of beauty…” The reverence for paper would show in feeling and listening to it. The ballet of movements would express the unity of the folder, the paper, and the form. The resulting model would show in all of its folds the mastery and humility of everything that went before.” It is truly an art form.

Origami Gift

By giving the gift of origami art, you are disseminating a small fraction of these affirmative traits found in the crystals, beads and paper, to the recipient like pixie dust. They are meaningful and thoughtful. They cannot be found at the local mall or department store. When you have given your handmade gift, you should feel you have given something original and valuable, like an heirloom. It is one of a kind. These handmade gifts are not thrown together in a haphazard way. There has been deliberate thought and planning that has gone into each creation. The ultimate goal is whether another person can see the purpose of your design and intent and appreciate the artistry of your creation. It is a gift worth giving.

How to Learn the Origami Art Tips

Do you want to learn one of the oldest and most exciting crafts? The origami art comes from China or Japan many centuries ago and still is very popular among children and adults. What makes it so great? Maybe the simplicity of the shapes, the elegance and the beauty of the created crafts. Maybe the fact that it’s the most affordable and unpretentious craft for you or your kids.

If you want to learn how to make origami yourself, there are just few steps you need to take. The best way to start is buy buying a practical origami book containing cut out sheets for folding. Such books provide you with an easy way to start, because the dashed lines and arrows make it perfectly clear what to do on each step.

These books are most appropriate for beginners. Once been there, you can start with something more complex. Buy a book containing models and instructions but without pages with real size folds and dashed lines. Generally these books will be cheaper and will contain more complex models. You will need the experience you gained with the beginner books, because some folds can’t be explained well on paper no matter how hard the book authors try. Knowing the basics however you should be able to read and understand even the not so clear parts of the instructions.

The only way to really learn origami is by practicing. Don’t just read and look, but actually build the shapes that you see. For most of them all it takes is just a sheet of paper so you are not investing much. Just like when reading the books, start practicing with the simple models. If needed, learn the basic folds before doing any complete figure – knowing the folds will help you even for the most complex origami in the future.

One great way to learn building more complex origami is to watch live or video demonstration. Fortunately as the web grows, there are many videos appearing and showing how to make origami crafts. Of course, having a live person show you how to do the things is even better, because you can ask questions – that’s why joining an origami club is always a good idea! On the other hand watching videos online is free and doesn’t take much time, so it still may be the option you will prefer.

The frequent subjects of origami are birds, flowers, animals, airplanes, cars and houses. There is no special preference what subject to start with, as long as you enjoy it and feel interested in it.

Origami Art tips


There are a lot of unique and interesting crafts and art forms for people to do and enjoy. One that I find truly amazing is origami. Imagine starting with a flat sheet of paper and with a few folds and sculpting, end up with a crane, star, bull or hundreds of other incredible creations. It’s amazing! There seems to be a question as to where this art form first originated because paper decomposes so rapidly that it’s hard to prove the exact origin. The name is Japanese tho, Ori meaning to fold and gami meaning paper.

Japan seems to have an extensive history of this art with even a poem on record from 1680 that describes paper butterflies in a dream, but there is also evidence of Spain, Germany, China and other areas having a long history of this art form as well. I’m not sure why, but my vote goes to Japan, mainly I guess because of the name, but China is also in the running seeing how they supposedly were the first to invent paper. In the early years of paper, it was expensive, so this form of art wasn’t really a hobby, but done more for formal functions. Today some artists will cast their creation in bronze for a permanent sculptural rendition of their artwork.

You can use almost any paper, especially when you are first starting. Regular copy paper for some of the easier items, a heavier weight paper that is used when wet folding is involved, foil backed paper for some of the more involved designs or special origami paper that comes in various sizes and beautiful colors. Even tho you can use almost any type of paper, origami paper is usually the best because it is thinner than most paper but strong, and holds a crease very well.

This is also one of the few crafts or art forms that you really can do without any tools, although paper clips and tweezers can be useful at times and help act as another pair of fingers. I can remember when my mother would do a very rough form of origami with her handkerchief, by folding it to make it look like a hammock with two babies swinging in it during Church to keep me quiet. Mom always liked to tell me how it was easier to do 3 loads of wash (before our modern washing machines were invented) and hang them out on a line to dry than it was keep me quiet during Church for one hour.

If you would like to find an inexpensive craft that you could do with your young children, try origami. All you have to do is search on the internet for origami for Kids and you will be able to find a lot of simple designs that you can do together for very little cost, in fact free if you use some used paper you have around the house. What a sense of accomplishment your children will have when they see what they are able to make with a plain piece of paper or have them color one side before they get started to make it even more personal and special to them.

Once you have spent some time with the kids, challenge yourself and try a more complicated design. Again, all you have to do is a little research on the internet for some free patterns and watch some how to videos to get yourself started. Spend some time looking at some of the amazing creations that true artist have done using paper to get inspired and then just start folding.

Beauty Of Origami Swan

Now when it comes to making different birds out of origami it seems that most people seem to think of the traditional cranes. Now these cranes are very beautiful but what has been more impressive to me has been the origami-swan. It is still very impressive to me how creative people can be with a simple piece of paper. I was in Japan a few years ago and when I got off of the plane I was very hungry so my friends and I decided to go and get something to eat. As we went to look at all of the different restaurants I noticed that there was a museum in the airport.

After my friends and I finished eating I suggested that we go and check out the museum, now my friends did not want to go but ended up going with me, the museum was dedicated to the art of origami and it was so beautiful that I fell in love with origami at that very moment. I walked around the museum for hours, I walked around for so long that all of my friends left me to go and check the hotel out. I simply could not believe how beautiful the museum was, there were hundreds of different pieces of the origami art. There were gardens all made out of paper, there were statues and little cities with people and fireworks, and it was beautiful! There was even little statues made to represent figures of the past, it was all so much for me to take in. I love this museum so much that I went back three more times before we left Japan.

The first time that I was there, I noticed that there was a section where you can make your own origami creation, now I knew that I was not going to be able to make anything to match what was made and on display in the museum but I still wanted to give it a try and I really wanted to be able to start making creations at home. The first piece that I made was an origami-heart. Now this was simple but I was very proud of myself. However, I saw a person making an origami-swan and I was very impressed, it was so pretty and only slightly more complex than the heart that I had made.

When I left Japan and returned home I decided to look in to making the origami-swan, I have now mastered it and along with the fish that I make, I get the most compliments on the swan. When it comes to origami, it is an art that is delicate, beautiful, and invokes the mind to think of gardens and pleasant things, the origami-swan plays right in to this and I think that this is why the swan creates such a beautiful feeling for everyone, it is fairly simple to make and it is very popular, a lot of people really like them. The beauty of origami swan will always be cherished.