DIY Paper Flower Birthday Number

The Bee Themed Backdrop

Paper flowers come in really handy as quick, easy to make decorations for any occasion. The materials you need to make these pretty designs are usually found in all homes. I made these tissue paper flowers for my little one’s first birthday, as a quick design element in her photo gallery backdrop.

In the 1st birthday backdrop pic above, you will notice that the flowers at the top are also made out of tissue paper. I followed the same steps to fold these flowers, too. The difference being the size of the paper:

  1. For the center most flower, I used 10 sheets measuring 20 inches.
  2. For the next biggest size, I used 6 square sheets measuring 12 inches,
  3. For the in between sized flowers, I used 5 sheets measuring 8 inches and lastly
  4. Used 4 sheets measuring 5 inches for the the smallest flowers.

I wanted something which screamed out ‘1’ for her special day, and I wanted it to be a very DIY, eco friendly design, too. I found a floral tissue paper numeral idea along with a very detailed tutorial on making the paper flowers on The Craft Patch.

To make my paper flower number, I needed to have a firm base to attach the flowers and then the multiple flowers themselves. For the base i.e. the number 1 (since it was my little one’s first birthday), I used pieces of a cardboard box glued together to form the digit. I then covered this cardboard numeral in yellow tissue paper to match the theme, before I glued the finished flowers on it.

How to make the template for number ‘1’:
You will need:
Amazon Packaging box
Scissors
Pen
Ruler / Measuring tape
Glue
  1. Take a piece of cardboard – I used Amazon packaging for this purpose. Draw the number ‘1’ and then cut this out.
  2. OR you can also cut the flaps of the box, and then stick them to form a ‘1’ shape (you need 3 flaps of a rectangular box). My numeral was approx 14 inches tall and 5 inches in width.
  3. Next, cover this base with a sheet of tissue paper to match your tissue flowers. This will enhance the look of your floral numeral.
  4. Start placing the tissue flowers on the numeral base to form the digit ‘1’. (The image shown in the series below if of before I covered the base in yellow tissue paper)

*For other numbers, draw the outline on cardboard or thick paper and then cut out to form the base.

 

How to make the tissue paper flowers:
You will need:
A pack of yellow tissue paper (10 sheets)
Scissors
Glue
thread (preferably yellow)
Ruler / Measuring Tape
Pen
(This will allow you to make 6 flowers of 8" diameter)
  1. Measure & cut 8 inch squares – 30 in all –  of the yellow tissue paper. *to make 6 flowers, use 30 square sheets of tissue paper.
  2. Take 5 sheets and then accordion fold them to a 1 inch width as shown below.
  3. Cut and shape the ends of the accordion folded set of sheets as shown.
  4. Use a small piece of thread and tie the center of the sheets. Spread the right side of the accordion as seen in the image below.
  5. Now, carefully start separating the layers, starting from the top and pull towards to the center. There will be 4 layers on each side. Repeat on the left side.
  6. Gently fluff out and form the flower.
Completed Tissue Flower

Origami Lollipop 3.0 (Design by Tony Wang)

Origami Lollipop (Design by Tony Wang)

I came across this pretty design on Instagram, following Ryan Charpentier‘s nicely done fold of it and could not help but put this on my folding to-do list. I was amazed that the lollipop, bow and the lollipop stick are all folded from a single sheet of paper! I purchased the diagrams from SAOrigami and promptly received it. I could not wait to fold it!

The folding sequence is a clever one, pretty straight-forward and one can see the lollipop taking shape almost immediately. There is minimal shaping required for this design and the design takes advantage of color change throughout, mimicking the swirly design of real lollipops. In origami, sinks are one of the folds which always get me nervous as I am never neat with them, no matter how precise I try to be with the pre-creasing. In this diagram, Tony Wang has 2 closed sinks in a series, the first one being simple enough (where I can’t goof up) and the other requiring me to have the dexterity of a cat. I managed to get this one completed without tearing the paper or crumpling it into a ball. I’m happy!

For the paper, I did not have a large enough size of Kami with me (the creator suggested a size of at least 30 cm). So, i decided to give this a try with something different. I folded this using double tissue paper which I prepared using MC. I went with a bright blue and pink for the lollipop instead of a bright color and white combination. The size of the paper I used was larger than the suggested size – it’s a square sheet of 20 inches. The finished model is around 9 inches in length.

The diagram is available for sale on SAOrigami as well as OrigamiUSA’s The Source.

Arabian Dhow (Design by Ancella Simoes)

Arabian Dhow (Designed by Ancella Simoes)

This is a design I came up with in February 2020. The inspiration behind this model is the traditional ‘dhow’ which one sees regularly plying the creek in Dubai, United Arab Emirates and other gulf countries. These small boats usually have 1 or 2 sails and look lovely sailing over the creek by the setting sun. Having grown up in Dubai, these boats always make me nostalgic of my earliest years. Dhows usually have lateen rigging and were historically used for trade purposes – ferrying fruits, vegetables, heavy equipment and other items between gulf countries, Pakistan, India and East Africa. The dhow was known for two distinct features i.e. it’s lateen sail (triangular sail) and stitched construction in olden times. The sails powered it to its destination and this vessel was a major transportation for a thriving trade during those times. Today, tourists enjoy boat rides along the creek in this vessel. They are also used to ferry people across short distances.

My design showcases the lateen sails with two masts and I have shaped these sails a bit. It is folded from a single sheet of paper preferably duo colored, and one can use any type of paper to fold this model. A square sheet, the size of which is at least 6 inches, will work and this will result in the finished model measuring approx 5 inches in length. I have used triple tissue paper to fold this model, prepared by sticking 3 sheets of tissue paper together using MC. This was a little experiment for me since I needed duo colored paper for my fold and I had paper remaining from my previous folding project. However, this model does not require thin paper to fold – almost any kind of paper will suffice. I started folding this model with regular post it notes to get the form and shape and then moved on from there to test out how it will look with tissue paper.

Diagrams for this model are published in the British Origami Magazine #321. You can see a review for this edition here.

Violin (Design by Gen Hagiwara)

Violin (Design by Gen Hagiwara)

This design is a good example of the box pleating technique and is a fantastic model to fold, resulting in a stunning outcome. A complex design which requires glue to hold the neck in place, I found this one enjoyable to fold. There is a violin bow designed by Paulius Mielinis which complements this Violin. However, I am not aware if the diagrams or crease pattern have been published for it.

The most amazing part of this model is the attention to detail. It has everything from the scroll, peg box and pegs to the f-holes on the body of the instrument. I am amazed with the level of thought which has been put into designing this model by Gen Hagiwara – it is truly mind blowing. While a major portion of the folding sequence, in the beginning, is the pre-creasing to fold the basic Violin shape, the folding sequence quickly transitions to shaping the model to make it aesthetically realistic. The part which requires a lot of patience and dexterity is the neck of the violin, which includes the peg box and pegs. This portion took the longest time for me to fold. To make the scroll at the end of the neck, I used a bit of water to wet and then roll in. I have clicked a few pictures from different angles hoping to capture the complexity and beauty of this design.

Violin’s Peg box Details

The diagrams to this design can be found in Origami Tanteidan Magazine #143 (which you can back order from Japan Origami Academic Society at the time of writing this post) and you can also check out JM Origami tutorial for this. I used double tissue paper to fold this Violin – a single sheet each of brown and black tissue paper stuck together using MC. I then cut the prepared paper to the 1:4 ratio which is needed to start folding. To shape the violin, I used clips to hold the curves and folds in place and kept it overnight to set. The paper I used was Darice 100-Piece Premium Quality Tissue Gift Wrapping Paper and I used Lineco Methyl Cellulose Adhesive to prepare the double tissue paper.

Violin’s Side View

You are always in my heart (Design by Andrey Lukyanov)

You are always in my heart (Design by Andrey Lukyanov)

Happy Mother’s Day!

This year I celebrate my first mother’s day being a new mom and for it, I received a load of flowers from my daughter 🙂

I have been thinking for quite a while on what model to fold to mark this occasion and I finally settled on Andrey Lukyanov’s You are always in my heart. This is a great little design to fold and the two-toned color hearts makes it look very nice. This model has a quick folding sequence and if one is crisp in making their folds, they’ll be rewarded with a perfect little double heart model.

I used Japanese Washi Paper to fold this design and I wanted the plain color side as the smaller heart, specifically. I thought the transition from a single shade of color to a heart of vibrant colors would signify a heart bursting of love. The size of the paper I used was 4 inches and there is no requirement for a fine or thin sheet of paper to fold this model. Kami or regular origami paper works best and you can play around with the color combinations. The size of the finished model is approz 2 inches.

How to fold this model:

Mariano Zavala has created a clear and concise tutorial on Andrey Lukyanov’s You are always in my heart. He has explained the steps really well and I found this tutorial very easy to follow.