Archive for the Origami Friends Category


Posted in Origami, Origami Friends, Origami Models on December 13, 2011 by origamimommy

This is my origami friend, Troy.

He is always smiling especially when showing you an amazing origami fold.  Troy is an exceptional folder from Phoenix and a member of the Arizona Origami Society. He has a remarkable ability to create realistic flower arrangements which he displays annually at the February Matsuri Festival.  Below is a picture of a folded orchid arrangement.  You can almost smell its aroma.

Recently I received a box in the mail from Troy, his latest and greatest accomplishment;   an origami fir tree designed by Francesco Guarnieri.  The tree was made from tant paper.  I was delighted to receive such a precious model and it has a place of honor in my origami Christmas decorations in my entry way.


Arizona Origami Society

Posted in Origami Friends on May 24, 2011 by origamimommy

Last weekend (5/14/11),  My husband and I went to Phoenix for a late Mother’s Day celebration with my children who live there.  Coincidently, the Arizona Origami Society had their monthly meeting and of course I had to join in the fun!  The group usually meets the 2nd Saturday of the month at Bookmans. If you are in the Phoenix area stop by-they are a warm and welcoming group.

Troy (left) taught the Sakota Twist Rose with a leaf from the online Origami Club.  Cathy (center) shows us a stylized butterfly by Evi Binzinger from Creased Magazine taught by Doris. Carol show off her Shumokov butterfly that was taught by Diana.  Thanks AOS -I had a great time!

Linda Smith, paper artist

Posted in Origami Friends on May 1, 2011 by origamimommy

I have enjoyed sharing stories about many of my dear origami friends.  This is Linda Smith, not only a skilled paperfolder but an extraordinary paper artist. She creates fantastic art books and paper creations. Check out one of her handmade books, Inside Chance.

There are so many of her creative gems I would love to share…maybe in future posts… but while visiting her studio during the Matsuri weekend I fell in love with a rainbow flower creation she had in her house.  I gushed and begged to learn this delightful creation.  While in Phoenix this past weekend, she graciously taught a group of paper-folders from the Arizona Origami Society (and myself) this flower.  It was a flower that developed as she worked toward creating a paper agave plant.  The finished agave plant made from handmade linen paper and only with careful examination do you realize it is not the living plant.

Linda gave us each two file folders filled with all the materials we needed for 2 flowers.  We cut the parts out before descending on her house at 9 am Tuesday morning.  Linda then led us through the process step by step.

This was not a typical origami project…however, a very intriguing paper art project.  Linda worked with biologists finding out the degree angles of the leaves of the agave plant.  She then formulated a plan to make the leave curl up at the appropriate angles.

The individual leaves are cut out and holes are punched and string is placed through at correct intervals.  Eventually the strings must be tied tightly together to hold the flower in place.

It was over a two hour process and we all finished our flower (some of us with more help than others, smile).  In the end we are all smiling and happy campers with our flowers. Linda, thanks for your generosity, patience and willingness to give up your morning to teach your admirers!


Posted in Origami, Origami Friends, Origami Models on April 30, 2011 by origamimommy

I have another incredible origami friend, Mari Michaelis (aka, marigami).

Mari is exceptionally skilled with computer diagramming and has diagrammed many origami models including many of Yami Yamaguchi’s wonderful models. She also has a line of cute origami related products through Cafe Press.  Check out her website, marigami.

Recently, Mari asked me if I would like to test some diagrams for a tissue box by Francis Ow.  The folding sequence was elegant and the diagrams were perfect, but the box did not hold  tissues found in my area.   She sent me another tissue box container (based on Francis Ow’s box) by Paul Ee that perfectly holds the pocketbook size tissues. ingenious!

In my recent trip to Phoenix, Arizona, I got together with some of the Arizona Origami Society folders and taught this model.  It is a tricky fold but everyone accomplished it.  Thanks to Francis Ow and Paul Ee for sharing their wonderful models. Many thanks to Mari for very clear diagrams!

Snapology Easter Egg

Posted in Origami, Origami Conventions, Origami Friends, Origami Models on April 7, 2011 by origamimommy

I love to decorate for special occasions with origami.  With Easter approaching I want to share an arrangement I made for family and friends last year.  After attending the Pacific Coast Origami Convention in San Francisco in the fall, I came home with “snapology” fever that I caught from Faye Goldman.  She was teaching this strip folding technique developed by Heinz Strobl. It was a contageous type of folding because it is possible to make hundreds of polyhedron.  Each egg takes several hours to complete, but worth the effort.  Check out the many wonderful models possible on his website.

I put the snapology egg in a colorful basket with a chocolate rabbit and eggs.  Next to the basket is a carrot created by Ms. Mieko Seta (published in the NOA, October, 2000).

Tennessee Folding Fun!

Posted in Origami Friends, Origami Models on March 15, 2011 by origamimommy

I try to get back to Tennessee as often as I can to see my parents and sisters. Now I have a great folding buddy, Susan Wettling, to come and visit as well. Yesterday we met up at Tomato Head for lunch, folding and then some shopping in downtown Knoxville.   We folded Samuel Randlett’s, Shamrock and The Abundance Hen by Leyla Torres.  We included my twin sister, Pam, in all the fun!

During our shopping adventures we saw a newspaper origami dress on a mannequin.  Look at the detail:   

In the beginning….

Posted in Origami Friends, Origami Models on March 9, 2011 by origamimommy

I often get asked when and how I learned origami….here is the story:  Norman Schide discovered the world of paper-folding while teaching elementary school in 1956, in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  Every summer, Mr. Schide tried to learn something new to bring back to the classroom in the fall.  Enchanted by origami and the value it had for the classroom, he became one of Albuquerque’s first and most remembered paper-folders.  He once recalled, “I realized that I had to have something for kids to do that they learned from, that is kind of related to skills that they need.  And brighten the day…then I hit upon this from a book on paper-folding.  It really was the thing that brightened the day…and it’s not trivial.”
Being born the year Mr. Schide discovered origami, I have always felt that we were destined to meet.  I, too, searched for activities to brighten the day with the students I teach.  One afternoon after school, a colleague introduced me to Mr. Schide.  After seeing his cards, I immediately fell in love with origami.  When I asked if he would teach me his craft, the generous man just responded with “when?”  We met that Friday after school and continued for 15+ years folding together.  I had opportunities to attend origami conventions and bring back new folds and ideas to share with the man who gave me one of the greatest passions in my life.
Although Norman was self-taught, he could figure out almost anything.  Shortly after I met him, I found my first Tomoko Fuse origami box book and excitedly showed it to him.  The next day on my classroom desk was a brightly colored, perfectly folded box.  We folded every box in that book.
Mr. Schide made beautiful arrangements of origami models on cards that he sold mostly just to recoup the cost of the materials.  He loved sharing origami.  Toshie Takahama, a master folder from Japan, introduced Norman and his cards to the international origami community in 1984.  He was a good friend of Lillian Oppenheimer (founder of the Friends of the Origami Center of America) and she treasured the cards he sent her.  Lillian arranged to have his cards on display at a Tokyo department store in the late 1960s. Norman was a lifetime member of Origami USA and he loved his corresondances with folders world-wide.
Mr. Schide especially loved to fold money and was widely known for the “origami tips” he left at his favorite restaurants.  He folded and gave models to friends and acquainances, from the mailman to his dentist.  When I share with friends and co-workers about my love for origami, I inevitably hear, “Do you know Norman Schide?  He was my 5th grade teacher.”  He was a legend.  He did indeed “brighten” the day.

These are three models Norman independently discovered:

This card was based on Toshie Takahama's Beauty forms. It was published in her book: Creative Origami for Creative Living III.

This frog was created as a mascot for Mark Twain Elementary School where Norman taught 5th grade for more than 25 years.

This star was an independent discovery of Norman's created from a pentagon.