Thirty Days of Origami – Day #27: Traditional Origami Vase

69396_10151259709499086_1947961843_n16079_10151259709639086_1480138678_nTraditional Origami Vase

I’m catching up! Which is a good thing, considering that tomorrow is the end of the challenge. Man, this has been one hell of a month – and I’m so glad that I did it. Can’t wait to keep going with making new origami. It’s really been great for me – it’s a wonderful way to relax, to keep my creative juices flowing, and to hone my attention to detail.

This pattern was one of the first ones that I ran across at the beginning of the month and really wanted to do, but just couldn’t get over how many steps it took. All in all I think there are 42 individual creases, and 23 steps to making this cute little vessel out of just one sheet of 6″ square paper. This is one that I’ll keep working at getting perfect, because it’s not quite as pretty as I’d like. I’m picturing using a scrap from a brown paper bag to make this one – it would look more earthy, like a real Japanese vase.

If you’d like to make this one yourself, there are great photos for every step on Origami Instructions.

Thirty Days of Origami – Day #26: Origami Camelia

Origami Camelia

This is a seemingly complicated pattern that ends up being pretty simple. I wish that I would have had some paper that was a solid color on one side and a pattern on the other (or something of the sort) – that would have been much prettier. Also, instead of just folding the center petals up, I squash folded them so you could see more of the interior color. I think next time I might cut them open, instead, and see what that looks like. If you’d like to make your own, click here for the diagram.

Thirty Days of Origami – Day #25: Origami Standing Tray

 

This project also came from Tomoko Fuse’s book “Joyful Origami Boxes.” It’s OK, but not great – I should have made it out of a much sturdier paper. It stands just fine, and is a pretty neat little tray overall, but I don’t like how the legs fold out just a little. It’s just not my favorite creation.

Thirty Days of Origami – Day #24: Origami Diamond Box – It’s Purple!

 

 

This is one of my favorite pieces. It was really easy to make, is super sturdy, and of course since it’s purple I can’t help but think it’s one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever seen. I’m weird like that…you could cover dog poo in purple sparkles and it would probably take me a minute to start to think it might not be the most gorgeous creation ever. Something about purple just pops my endorphin levels – that’s why I created my Tumblr blog, Amethyst & Indigo, to help “collect” purple things online and cull my obsessive need to buy as many as possible. I realized one day on my way to work, wearing purple Chuck Taylors, carrying a purple laptop bag, sipping on a purple thermos, listening to my iPhone (wrapped in a purple case), that it was definitely time to channel my passion a tad differently before I turned into a walking ad for grape juice. Luckily, origami paper comes in many gorgeous patterns – and colors – and now that I have a whole box full I can branch out into other shades 🙂

Anyway, this one was very easy to make. It came from Tomoko Fuse’s book, “Joyful Origami Boxes,” and is the alternative shape of the easiest little docking box, a modular box that takes two pieces. I used 3″ squares of card stock for this one so that I’d have color on both sides, and the weight of the paper makes this little thing pretty tough.

Thirty Days of Origami – Day #23: Origami 5-Petal Flower

This modular 5-petal flower was designed by Tomoko Fuse, and was pretty easy to put together. Thank goodness for great sites like Origami Instructions, though, or else I probably would have had a hard time with this one. Not sure I like it that much, now that it’s done – it doesn’t lay flat against a surface, but has a weird ripple effect where some of the petals end up sticking up at a little bit of an angle. Most people would probably find that to be a nice touch, a little bit more dynamic, but it just annoys me. Also, I used 6″ squares for this one, and would have been much better off with 3″ squares or maybe even something tinier. If I do them again, I think I’ll try 3″ or less, and try making a bouquet, so that the movement of the piece doesn’t irritate me as much.

Thirty Days of Origami – Day #21: Origami Lazy Susan

 

 

This little candy dish/lazy susan was pretty easy to make using these instructions. The only thing I’d do differently next time is to use a much bigger piece of paper. I used a 6″ square this time, and though it’s really cute, it’s not going to be that useful. Next time I think I’d try a slightly heavier paper in a much larger size – maybe 12″ or perhaps even larger.

Thirty Days of Origami – Day #20: Origami Decorative Ball

 

 

 

I really liked making this one! For this I used 3″ card stock squares, and though it was a little tougher to fold than regular origami paper, the resulting decorative ball is pretty much indestructible. The pattern from this one came from Instructables – click here to make your own!

Thirty Days of Origami – Day #19: Origami Omega Star

 

 

This six-part, modular star was designed by Philip Shen. I found a link to the diagram on Leyla Torres’ Origami Spirit website. It was a little time consuming figuring out how to sink the center of each modular piece, especially since the diagram skips that part. After that, though, it was a pretty simple job of finishing up the folds and joining the six pieces. Now I’m only six pieces of origami behind my goal – let’s see if I can get another couple done today!

Paper & Fitness, In No Particular Order

OK, I lied – there is an order, but only because I was already set up with thoughts on paper.

I’m behind on origami (again) but I will finish this damn challenge, and what’s more, I will continue with my new hobby. I’ll probably only continue with the modular models, just because they’re absolutely fascinating and look cooler on the shelf when you’re done. Also, because The Man and I went to Michael’s today and he was an absolute gem of patience and fortitude as I went MAD with glee in the scrapbooking and origami sections!

I ended up buying a little tower of 300 3.5″ squares in a light card stock in a rainbow of colors, plus another 200 sheets of regular washi paper in 6″ squares, all in gorgeous little traditional geometric & floral print patterns, and a couple of 12″ squares of this cool retro kitchen print paper from the scrapbooking section. On top of all of those great finds, Michael’s was also having an awesome sale on paper storage boxes, made for holding 12″ squares but also just as good for smaller origami papers. It’s just a plastic briefcase kind of container that snaps shut, but at $3 it was the best buy of the day.

 

Also, in unrelated news, I’ve made a huge move towards getting this weight issue I’m always going on about off my plate for good. I’ve signed up for an online personal training program with Micah LaCerte & Diana Chaloux, the owners of HitchFit. I was putting together a new board on Pinterest to help visualize my physical fitness goals, and ran across this amazing before & after photo of a woman whose body was very similar to mine – not horribly out of shape, just round and soft and not awesome. The ‘after’ picture was so dramatic that I just had to click through and see what kind of gimmick was being sold.Only once I started reading the story, I realized that it wasn’t a gimmick – the program works, and has MANY before and after photos, with full testimonials.

After that, I was intrigued and spent about a week going through every inch of the website to see what the program was about. The owners of the gym are personal trainers and life coaches who also happen to be award-winning fitness models/competitors and as if that wasn’t enough, apparently they’re really nice people, too. They offer in-person training, but for online customers they’ll put together a personalized diet plan and exercise plan, with instructions and motivation to get you going, and weekly meetings online to help you keep reaching for your goal. The price was very reasonable, and for me the system was just what I was looking for – Diana’s already planned out my diet for the next 12 weeks, helpfully tailoring it to my request to go vegan. I was also given a ton of different materials, from a video that shows exactly how to do every exercise, to instructions on when, how, and how much to eat & exercise and a worksheet for defining personal motivation. If all goes well, I should be going from 31.03% body fat to 20% body fat in the next 12 weeks, which could translate into about 25 pounds.

I’ll pick up my groceries tomorrow morning to start the meal plan, and cook up meals for the week tomorrow night. Then it’s just up to me to keep my cardio up, strength train three times a week, and do my absolute best to work as hard as I can. If I can do that, in three months I’ll be where I’ve wanted to be for the last 10 years. And all I’ve got to do is follow directions – no independent thinking required, which should be such a relief considering how overloaded my brain has been lately. Wish me luck!