Tag Archives: origami

Origami Dress

12 Apr


Last year I posted about our favourite homemade Father’s Day gift, an origami shirt and tie garland.  The kids loved making it and their Papa loved receiving it.  We still admire it on a daily basis and according to my site statistics it’s the one readers come to visit the most (it’s even featured on the Disney blog Spoonful here).

As some of you may know, origami is very popular in this house (post to prove it here).  We spend hours folding everything from cranes (once we even folded 1000 for a special friend), balls, mice, pianos and even the odd piece of lingerie.  Whenever we have kids over to our house the origami box is usually the first thing that comes out and my kids love passing on their folding skills to others.

Since Mother’s Day is coming up (On May 12th in Italy) I thought it would be a nice idea to make the origami dress version of the shirt and tie garland.  My kids learned how to fold this dress a few years ago and we have a house full of them.


For this garland the kids folded tiny versions of the origami dress and then sewed them onto round pieces of paper.  The garland can be folded (carefully) up and slipped into an envelope to be opened on Mother’s Day.  Very sweet.


The kids also folded some larger dresses and made them into cards.  They only glued the top of the dress onto the cardboard which makes the skirt puff out a little.  Very pretty.  And very quick to do.

Here is a little video of my daughter showing how to fold a paper origami dress.  Please ignore the irritating music, I’ll try and find something a little more soothing soon.


Origami Obsessed

4 Feb

Every since I was a little girl I’ve been so intrigued by origami.   I’ve always loved all the beautiful shapes and papers and the fact that you can construct something so intricate from one little piece of paper.

When we were in Japan last year we visited lots of shops with the most gorgeous origami paper and ended up coming home with a suitcase full.  Since then we’ve been using it on a daily basis to fold everything from 1000 paper cranes to various origami clothing to frogs that can actually jump.  My kids have adopted my origami passion and I couldn’t be happier (and prouder).

One of my daughters received an origami book for Christmas called Genuine Origami.  The book offers 43 mathematically based origami models with some having up to 144 folds (for one piece of paper).  We have already done a few of the “basic models” from the book and they already had us sweating with all of the special technique folds.  My daughter has a goal of doing every  model in the book before the end of the year.  I think it will be a great father/daughter activity (in other words, I’m not interested in complex mathematical origami).

And since origami has obviously been on our minds lately, we’ve been seeing things related to origami everywhere.  Here are some of our favourites:

Origami Inflatable Scarf  created by Monomatopee (found here).

This origami wallpaper by Dottir and Sonur is absolutely gorgeous.  And I’m seriously thinking of ordering a few rolls for a surprise bedroom makeover for my daughter’s birthday next month.

Once I get on etsy I can’t seem to tear myself away for ages.  I came across these gorgeous pillows by Kissen Studio.  They’re made of silk and linen and come in a variety of origami designs.  I love the paper airplane one as well.

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These diy origami lamps with masking tape are gorgeous (found here).  A great rainy day project perhaps?

I’m in love with these origami inspired kid’s clothing from Uruguayan company Trommpo.  Trommpo specialises in clothing with geometric cuts and bold use of colour and shapes.

Paper Plane Necklace in Gold,  Japanese origami inspired gold pendant jewelry

Once again I found myself on Etsy and I discovered some gorgeous origami jewelery by Schlomit Offir.  They offer many different designs at really reasonable prices (Valentine Origami Necklace is now on sale!).

Do any of you have some favorite origami-inspired products, housewares, clothing etc?

Origami shirt and tie

8 May

Being Canadian with a Belgian husband and living in Italy has made it so that I never know when Mother’s or Father’s Day is. I know that it is in different months and on different days for each of the countries and I’ve pretty much mentally blocked all those dates from my mind. I had a feeling father’s Day was coming up so I spent hours with the kids making these origami dress shirt garlands. Then my son proudly announced that he was making me a Mother’s Day gift at school which must mean Father’s Day isn’t for a while (but we’re prepared and ready well in advance!).

These origami garlands are so sweet and my kids were the ones who actually folded the shirts (even my little guy). Origami has become very popular in our home and I’m so glad I brought back that suitcase FULL of origami paper from Japan (despite comments such as “are you sure we need 30 packages of origami paper?”).I sewed the little shirts together before glueing on the ties and bow ties. You can make these shirts any size you want. My kids have made tiny tiny versions and almost life size versions. When we’re in restaurants they even fold the cloth napkins into these little shirts. It takes under a minute to fold one so you can make loads in a short amount of time.

The kids can hang them up on a doorframe or to put them into an envelope to open on Father’s Day (whenever that may be). You can leave them loose or sew them together like I did. Last year my kids included a pocket and put in really nice messages and poems.

Here’s how to do it yourself! There is one step that will make you want to crumple up the paper, run out of the room and never try origami again but please believe me that once you ‘get” it everything will run smoothly. Hopefully my instructions will help you a little (original pattern idea comes from Martha Stewart Living June 2004). Continue to read for the step-by-step…

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