Nick Robinson’s elephant from nuinui japanese patterns box

So… I bought this big box of origami paper by nuinui editions. The paper is amazing, and I didn’t pay attention, but it turns out the four models by Nick Robinson are really cute too. They’re not complicated, but the results are good.

So I started by folding plenty of elephants. For the photos, I had to borrow the grey one back from my roommate who had already claimed it :)

The blue elephant is folded from 20cm plain Heyda paper, the tiny one is washi chiyogami 7,5 cm (there are few enough folds that it works great in small) and the grey is 20cm Folia ‘Ornamental” paper.

I’ll blog about the other models in the booklet soon :)

Video tutorials

I really prefer diagrams to videos, but some models are not diagrammed, or I don’t have the books… so I’ll take a video instead ;)

Here is a list of the video tutorials that I watch. I’ll also explain what I like or not about them and other video tutorials.

So, the videos that I regularly download and fold are from Jo Nakashima, Paper Kawaii, and Jeremy Shafer. Jo Nakashima makes videos for models designed by him and other people, Jeremy Shafer mostly shows models he designed. No sure about Paper Kawaii, she doesn’t say where the models are from or if she designed them.

So, that would be my first remark: if you show a model, it’s really good to say who it comes from, where the diagrams can be found if it has been diagrammed – so that people can thank the authors, search for more models by them, buy their books… attribution is the first step to keep a sharing community alive :)

The second remark is: always start the video by showing the finished model. Those I linked do that, but some other videos don’t, and it’s bothering, having to scroll through the video to be sure what you’re folding (I usually download the videos, so the photos and text that were published with it are not there when I go around to fold them).

Third: give indications for the paper. Paper size is important (it’s good to recommend bigger paper for a first try, and to say the smallest size possible – for exemple, “This model should be folded from 30cm paper, you can use 20cm paper if you prefer, it’s unlikely to work with 15cm paper if you’re not a miniaturist”).

Of course, the number of sheets and format of the paper are necessary too. Some videos show rectangular paper without mentioning if it’s A4, US letter paper format, or some other entirely. Some videos show all the steps to prepare an hexagon and only then say “we’re going to cut here”. It’s better to say “we’ll fold from an hexagon, let’s see how to cut it”.

Paper texture is important too. I’m especially frustrated with Jo Nakashima with that: he uses gorgeous tissue-foil or such… which is too expensive for me, and I wouldn’t use it for a first try anyway ; and he doesn’t give indications about the texture of paper, like “thicker paper would be better” or ” this can / can’t be folded from kami”. I folded the hot-air balloon from ordinary paper, only to realize at the end that the box at the bottom would not hold with my thin paper, thick paper was a requirement that had not be given at the beginning.

On the other hand, it’s really good to see gorgeous paper in action. I’m half in love with copper tissue-foil paper, just from his videos.

Fourth: in some videos, Jo Nakashima puts a picture on the side of the video with the diagram step where he is at. I really like that, so you can see what he’ll do and fold at the same time as him, instead of watching until the movement is done and then pause. But I guess the models needs to be diagramed first, so it doesn’t work when people film instead of diagraming :)

On the other hand, paper kawaii and Jo Nakashima don’t comment on what they do, while Jeremy Shafer does. It’s really good, so you can follow what happens even when your eyes are on your paper and not on the screen – and know when to pause if he’s gone to the next step before you’re done.

So, in conclusion: thanks to all the people who make video tutorials, and to the authors who authorize others to make videos of their models.

If you follow other video tutorials, please give me links! I’m interested in finding more :)

Paper

I’ll give recommendations to buy paper, because it took me a while to discover where to find each kind, and I just stumbled upon another shop yesterday, so maybe I could get some hints from readers too :)

I’m not sponsored by any of those shops (although, if you want to send me free paper, we can be friends!). It’s just a guided tour of what I’ve found so far on the Internet. Of course, if you do leave your home sometimes, there are plenty of papershops in most cities – but I definitly enjoy receiving them in my mailbox :)

The first reference, since I’m in France, is of course origami-shop. They have a large selection of special papers (lokta, origamido, elephant hide, and so many other textured paper, huge sheets, and many other wonders). Honestly, I haven’t bought many of those yet, I don’t consider my level to be worth spending that amount of money in paper, but they also have all the basic colored (single face or duo) and patterned paper, book+paper kits, etc. They also have books, but I mostly buy mine second-hand on amazon, since it’s cheaper. But for papers, their prices are most of the time lower than everywhere else :) I particularly recommend the nuinui collections of patterned papers, amazing – and if you don’t have one, spare 2€ to buy a paper cutter, it changed my life. The test sheets were a bit disappointing though, not perfectly square. I ordered there 3 times, and was really satisfied each time. The founder (?) Nicolas Terry is an origamist, and knows what he sells :) I had a few questions that were always answered very fast by email.

The other French shop that I found yesterday (yay!) is papiergami.com. They have what origami-shop doesn’t have: full sheets of gorgeous japanese paper (chiyogami and katazome), and the cheapest small sheets of those I found (boxes of 200 sheets in 6cm, and packages of 100 sheets in 7,5 cm). Their Tant paper is cheaper than from origami-shop, but they don’t have the bigger sizes and they do have shipping costs, so it depends what you need. I haven’t completed an order there yet, so I’ll let you know how it goes – but I have bought on ebay second-hand paper from them, that are magnificent.

From Germany, but the shipping costs are not much higher, there is schoene-papiere.de. I don’t like the website, it’s really confusing (they are also less specialized in origami), but they have a huge selection of papers. They have glassine paper, cheap and beautiful packs of double-sided kraft paper, and in the offers you find bigs packs of cheap colorfull patterned Folia paper. They have a few japanese chiyogami sheets, but expensive. They have other weird japanese papers that I haven’t ordered yet but seem gorgeous. I ordered there once, and was satisfied with the order – except for the single-color Folia paper packs, the colors are hideous and fade fast (the patterned are good, though).

In England, there is Color Tree LTD. The shipping costs to France are high, but they have products from Jong Ie Nara, a paper company from Korea that makes beautiful and cheap origami paper, not easy to find in France. I have a box of 500 sheets double-sided paper in many colors, a box of foil / hologram paper, and a box of traditionnal Korean patterns – all of which you usually buy a few at a time for a high price. The sheets are thin, so it’s good for animals and modulars, not so much for boxes. They are also on ebay and amazon, the shipping costs are somewhat similar but sometimes they don’t sell the same items in the different places, so it’s worth checking each. I ordered there once, bothered them by email to have all the products I wanted on the same site, they were very helpfull.

I ordered also from Creativ Company in Germany, they don’t have much choice but the Vivi Gade collections are cheap and pretty (ordered origami paper and double-sided wrapping paper to cut in large sheets), and I am really happy with it.

I also order scrapbooking paper, because they make thicker paper in 30X30cm that are perfect for bigger boxes. After much comparing, I found Artemio is a brand that makes really cheap huge packs of assorted patterned paper. Beware, some scrapbooking paper is in fact cardboard and won’t fold well. Also, it seems to be a hobby for rich people, sometimes the prices are terrifying.

I obviously also order paper from ebay and amazon, in particular Aitoh, Daiso, and some other kinds of origami paper, which are not on the above websites. What is sure is: order from amazon.fr and not amazon.com, the shipping costs are better ; and order from ebay.com and not ebay.fr, the prices are less crazy.

So, my favorite amazon sellers are: Takeharu Mori for the huge lots of square yuzen washi paper ; LEWTHWAITEmusicUK for the recycled partition paper ; Bic Warehouse, Japan-subcultures, Sukiyaki, wakuwaku Japan for papers from the US or Japan (shipping costs are low but it takes a while to arrive ; I’m poor and patient).

On ebay there are good deals with the bids, but most often than not the prices are higher than in the shops listed above. Also, I’m always surprised to see that people bring the bids higher than the buy-it-now price ^^

If you’re in the US, the Paper Place has beautiful Chiyogami. Anglesey Paper Company has Lokta paper. The shipping costs discouraged me from ordering, but they’re probably interesting for locals. There are many others, but I don’t have them in my bookmarks.

Beware, I’ve been known for falling in time-warps looking at somptuous paper, it might be contagious ;)