Origami Mandala Hanabi (Design by Nani Suwarni)

Origami Mandala Hanabi (Design by Nani Suwarni)

I came across this design while browsing through the Internet trying to decide what to fold today. These Mandalas are very pretty and look great when folded with patterned paper. Once can also decorate the finished Mandala with an embellishment in the center like a bead or a crystal and use a cord to make a hanging out of it and they will look gorgeous!

I made this out of regular Kami paper and thought of using solid colors which are all different colored in order to give the finished model a contrasting look. These are quick to fold and usually consist of just 8 sheets of paper.

Paper to use:
The kind of paper you use here i.e. the pattern or design is what gives an added effect to the overall look. If you select double sided paper which is colored differently on either side, the model will look better given that you have the underside of the paper also visible in certain places. One can also use pretty patterned wrapping paper to fold this model. The minimum size of paper you should use is 3 inch square sheets, the finished model measures approx 3.5 inches in diameter once completed (using 3 inch sheets).

How to fold Mandala Hanabi:
The designer of this model – Nani Suwarni – shared the diagrams to this model on her Facebook page and that’s what I have followed in order to fold this pretty design. 8 sheets of square paper are required to fold this design and the diagrams are pretty clear. One does need to have a little folding experience prior to folding this design as there are a reverse folds involved in the folding sequence.

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Clover Kusudama (Design by Maria Sinayskaya)

Clover Kusudama (Design by Maria Sinayskaya)

I folded a kusudama after a very long time and it took me about 4 hours in all to fold and assemble this design. The model itself looks complicated with the layered or frilly look but the individual units are pretty easy to fold once you’ve got the hang of it. I usually do not fold kusudama designs since they are time consuming and monotonous. But this time around, I found this pretty pattern and thought I would give it a try. These Kusudama designs look pretty when hung from a height or can be used as table decoration in the house.

Paper to use:
I have used 30, 3 inch square sheets of single side colored Kami paper to fold the model. I think this is the ideal size of paper to use as larger sized sheets would mean larger ‘edges’ (those half cube structures which you seen in the design) between the folds and this would make the model less compact. It is easier to manage the assembly with the units folded from these smaller sheets, too. You do not require any paperclips or pins to hold the in-progress model together while you assemble it all; you just require patience. One can use wrapping paper or any similar textured paper to fold this model. Tissue paper or extremely fine paper should be avoided.

How to fold the Clover Kusudama:
Maria Sinayskaya has diagrammed the folding sequence and also provided links to the instructional video recorded explaining this folding process. Further, she also includes color photographs of the finished model in various paper color combinations to give folders an idea of the kind of paper to use.

I found the video by Jo Nakashima pretty clear and very helpful especially where the assembly process is concerned and therefore I thought I would share it with you all, too. Jo makes the extra effort of cross referencing each step in the diagrammed folding sequence with that of the step in the instructional video, too.

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12 point Flower Tower (Design by Chris K. Palmer)

12 point Flower Tower (Design by Chris K. Palmer)

This is one model which I have been trying to fold in the last few weeks. My first attempt failed miserably with me not being able to collapse the first layer itself. This is the tricky part since the paper simply refuses to stay put at times, when folding it all around.

I gave this design another go last weekend and was pleasantly surprised that I was able to get through the first layer in two tries. What I did differently this time around was to make sure that the pre-creases were firm and sharp. I think this this helped a lot, as the paper started falling into place along the creases made.

Once you get through the first layer, the second and third are pretty much alright since you would already know how to nudge the paper into place. If you start off with a large sized paper, you can have multiple layers.

The Origami artist who has designed this wonderful model – Chris Palmer – has himself made an instructional video with Jeremy Shafer and he explains the steps and pre-creasing clearly and also provides tips on what to expect and how to go about the folding sequence.

Paper to Use:
Tant or craft paper measuring approx. 15 inches in size, duo-colored. You can also Kraft paper to fold this model. Extremely thin or fine tissue paper would not go for this model, since there are numerous folds and you need a strong paper which will not give way with the folding.

How to fold:
Jeremy Shafer has recorded and shared a great video of Chris Palmer himself teaching the folding sequence for this amazing 12 point Flower Tower. It is extremely detailed with very helpful hints along the way.

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Origami Stars (Design by Enrica Dray)

May 25, 2014 Modular & Geometric

I folded these stars recently for a small function at home, in Goa, India. I was looking for delicate stars or flowers to fold and place around the table or on the wall and found these pretty stars designed by Enrica Dray. As for the function, there is a tradition in Goa where Our Lady […]

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Braided Corona Star (Design by Maria Sinayskaya)

January 5, 2014 Instructional Videos

  I folded this braided star this weekend by following Sara Adams’ instructional video on her site. This is a pretty easy to fold design and you can fold it with almost any kind of paper available. Contrasting colors will make it look great and I chose a maroon and rose colored combination of Tant […]

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