Some things to Consider about Origami Paper:
- The size of the sheets
- The Cost of the paper
- Color, pattern and print. There are many wonderful variations
- Thickness - makes a big difference in how it folds, how it feels and how it looks
- Texture of the paper, some paper is like printer paper, this is what we expect of paper! But some origami paper, particularly the hand made ones can be luxurious, rich and thick, almost like a cloth. They also make papers that are heavily textured.
- Line and fold retention - Foil origami paper is easily creased and the crease will stay even if you unfold it. Other papers act differentl and you can fold/unfold them removing any sign of a crease.
Of course you can use any kind of paper to fold origami. You can just cut squares from printer paper or even gift wrapping paper. And this is particular economical when you are first starting out. But as you do more origami you are going to want to get better paper. Below is a selection of paper that I have bought and my thoughts about each one of them. And then further below I get into the more beautful Chiyogami and Washi papers.
Interesting Types of paper
Regular Origami paper: This is cut squares of paper that is colored or patterned on one side and white on the back side. This is a standard for origami and it creates some interesting work. For example.
Ths swan uses regular origami paper and you can see how the wings are the patterned and colored sized and the neck and head are the white side.
Foil Paper is wonderful for origami. It gives a very distinctive look to your folds. And it is very easy to fold. But it does act a bit differently than regular paper so it will take a few folding attempts to get a feel for it. For example regular paper has a bit of spring back to it, particularly on multiple folds. Foil paper has little to no spring back.
Origami Paper Assorted Color Foil 4.5"
Big Origami Paper - I am partial to the larger sheets of paper because I have big hands and big sheets are easier for me to handle. This is something to consider. And, if you are an absolute beginner you might consider using large sheets. This paper is 12x12 inches. Roylco R15208 Really Big Origami Paper
Once the paper gets to around 10 inch squares it is considered big.
Small origami paper! Ok, small sheets of origami paper are wonderful too because you end up with tiny figures that can be very attractive. And small origami paper of course saves you money. This is a particularly good option if you are going to be doing something like folding 1,000 origami cranes. Origami Paper, 1000 sheets, 2 3/4 inches square
Japanese paper is not solely for Origami and there is some overlap and interchangeability between the different types of paper and these definitions have changed over the centuries. The definitions, paper consistency, construction and prints do vary but I will give you some general guidelines for understanding and selecting Japanese paper for origami.
The major things to realize about these kinds of papers is that they are thicker than your normal paper and have a bit of a cloth consistency and feel to them. The prints are always quite beautiful and they make for some gorgeous projects. But, in my opinion these are not typically as good for very complex folding because of their thickness and consistency. You have to get some and try it to get a feel for it.
Washi Paper - This is the term for Japanese handmade paper. And is considered to be the finest and most expensive paper. While it used to be hand made (and still is) It is now often machine made, but no less beautiful. Traditional Washi paper is made from the bark of the Gampi tree, the Mitsumata shrub, and the and the Kozo shrub. It can also be made from materials like bamboo, hemp, rice and wheat. Washi come from wa meaning Japanese and Shi meaning paper. If you are looking to make beautiful folds to display to others you might consider washi. Washi Paper is on amazon.com right here
Yuzen and Chiyogami - These two terms for Japanese paper are today interchangeable but traditionally Yuzen paper had textile patterns on it and Chiyogami had repeating wood block patterns.
Chiyogami Paper on Amazon
Shinwazome Paper- This is thick textured that has embossed and raised patterns. It is paper that is often described as luxurioius and it often is embossed and detailed with gold highlights. Shinwazome Paper on Amazon
Momigami Paper: A leather-like texture is a hallmark of Momigami paper. Made from the bark of the Mulberry Tree, Momigami Origami Paper provides durability and pliability. Use Ginburi Momigami Origami Paper for sculptures needing a crinkled texture. This Origami Pack contains 18 sheets of 6" Ginburi Momigami Paper. Each sheet is a different color allowing you to find exactly the right hue for each project. The Momigami Paper is double-sided with the same color on the reverse side.
Available on Amazon.com here
Want to Make your own paper? I have a tutorial!
I been putting this project off for a long time because I thought it would be challenging. Wow I was wrong. Paper making is so easy to do! And it comes out great. I love this and you are going to love it too! The possibilities are endless for scrolls, origami, fine writing and so much more. How to Make Paper
Lots of Wonderful Papers Available on Amazon.com:
Pack of 10 Sheets Japanese 6" Assorted Colors Washi Origami Folding Papers, Made in Japan
- This listing is for 1 Pack of 10 Sheets Japanese 6" Origami Folding Paper Washi-Unryu
- This washi origami paper set comes with 10 double sided sheets of assorted colors. In the shape of a square, this set of washi origami paper comes in shades of yellow, pink, white, light blue, purple, green, brown, red, blue, and light yellow.
- With one sheet of each color, this washi origami paper set come with textured and delicately veined washi papers. Washi paper is a type of paper produced in Japan that makes use of the fiber from the bark of gampi or mulberry trees to produce a unique and finely textured paper.
- This washi origami paper set with its lovely translucent sheets is the perfect way to craft that origami project you've always had in mind.
- Made in Japan
Shinwazome Chiyogami Origami Paper
High quality origami paper made in Japan.
Origami Paper Traditional Prints 8 1/4
I like the size of this paper (8 1/4 inches) It is good for big hands and for small hands. It comes in six different patterns and is double sided in that there is a pattern printed on both sides. One side is a pattern and the other side is the same pattern with the colors reversed. See my accompanying picture for the patterns. This package also comes with a small booklet that shows you how to fold six different items like (see my accompanying picture) a kimono, crane, Star box,lantern, fishing boat,and Hashi Wrapper which is good for holding chopsticks or pencils . The paper itself is pretty good and it holds sharp creases and is durable. So, if you are a beginner this is a good paper for you. It is also good paper for kids because of the durability and the larger size. And as a little bonus you also get a nice sheet of gold paper which you can save for a special project.
Melissa & Doug 6"x6" Origami Paper
This is a decent little selection of very vibrant and fluorescent colors. You get 51 sheets and a generous number of them are metallic which are my favorites. This comes in a nice little box that has a string seal on it which helps to keep the paper safe and organized. It also comes with a little stapled booklet that shows you how to fold five different projects: Airplane, Swan, Fortune Cookie, Wishing Star and Inflatable cube. See my accompanying picture to view these five projects. The paper is okay. But it is pretty durable which is good for learning, refolding and working at the projects. It is colored on one side and white on the other. I love the bright colors, but some of the colors will bleed through to the white just a little bit and will leave a bit of smudging on your fingers. So, that is why this is only four stars. The instructions are pretty clear but I had trouble with the swan. I couldn't quite get it right. Nonetheless it is a nice little kit that gives you the paper and folding instructions for a good start. I like the star and the inflatable cube the best.
Roylco R15208 Really Big Origami Paper
A new idea for classic origami projects. Super-sized sheets make folding 3-D figures easy for beginners. The beautiful double-sided designs are based on traditional patterns. Experienced origami artists will enjoy the variety of designs. 6 different prints.
Origami Paper Pattern 6 3/4
I like this paper. It is thin yet durable and it has a little bit of a vellum feel to it similar to the outer wrapper on a chocolate bar. Not quite but similar. It comes in a variety of colorful small print repeating patterns and on the opposite side of each sheet is the corresponding solid color. The picture on the cover shows patterned color on one side and blank white on the other but this isn't what I got. Being almost seven inches square means it is a little bit easier to work with. It comes with a fold out booklet that gives you some introductory folding instructions and six different projects: Swan, Pig, Tortoise, Samurai Helmet, Rowboat, and Star Box. One nice thing about these folds is that they have a Japanese Origami feel to them; The folds in the booklet would be a bit of a challenge for absolute beginners but if you have done a little origami you will get them. The picture below shows some of the paper and the six projects in the booklet.
Shinwazome Chiyogami Origami Paper
Shinwazome Chiyogami...This set includes 7 sheets with 7 assorted color designs. This is very "deluxe" origami paper; with metallic accents and raised embossed lines. The sheets are high-quality printed rice paper; and measure 5-7/8" x 5-7/8".
Japanese Print Chiyogami- Origami Paper
Washi Style Origami Paper, 120 sheets #N8383
Assorted designs of Washi paper for your origami or craft needs! Package of 120 sheets of 6 inch square paper with assorted Japanese designs! 30 different designs in a variety of colors in an easy to use size.
Origami Paper, 1000 sheets, 2 3/4 inches square
Origami paper in 7cm squares for your small origami work! This multi coloured box has 1000 pieces of origami paper in 12 different colours.
Origami Paper- Mini Set of 500 Sheets 1-1/16 Inch Square
Mini Mini Origami Paper Set...This pack of origami paper is adorable! This set is called "Mini Mini" origami- and it really is mini. The sheets measure 1-1/16 inch square! The entire set makes a little rainbow colored cube. There are 500 sheets per pack. These make perfect little gifts or party favors! Imagine them as favors at a birthday party or at a scrapbooking event. Of course they are ideal for folding bookmaking collage- just about anything you can think of!
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