Origami originated from China and was popularized in Japan. It is the art of paper folding. In Japanese, “ori” means folding and “gami” means paper. What’s so great about folding paper? The kind of paper folding we’re talking about here is not the same as merely folding a piece of paper to fit in your pocket for portability.

What we’re talking about here is folding paper into birds, butterflies, flowers, dogs, cats, and even pokemon. Origami is more than just paper folding. It’s paper transforming. It’s paper magic. It’s art.

Origami can range from the super complex with realistic models to the simple models that are more easy to fold, but yet very recognizable. However complex, these models require carefully planned folds like brush strokes on a Rembrandt painting. If you’re like me, sometimes random, clumsy folds are enough to create something recognizable.

Origami is a hobby for the young and old. It can be easy or hard depending on the complexity of the model. It can be relaxing and/or mindbending depending on your reasons for folding. It can be fun no matter how old you are or what your level of expertise is. Finally, it is always magical. Ready to fold your own origami?

How to begin folding origami

While origami can be folded with all kinds of papers, they’re most often folded with thin, square sheets because of their ability to take and hold intricate folds. You can purchase pre-cut, thin, and colorful origami paper if you want your models to look their best, or you can create a square out of plain 8.5×11 or A4 rectangular paper. The last option is simply to print out the colorful origami paper and cut out the square.