a peek inside the fishbowl

06 Apr, 2012

Catch a falling star

Posted by andrea tomkins in: File under crafty

Are you familiar with the story of Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes? It’s a true story about a Japanese girl who was two years old when the atomic bomb was dropped near her home in Hiroshima. She later developed leukaemia, and when she was hospitalized she began making origami cranes with the goal of making one thousand of them. (According to legend, if you fold a thousand origami cranes you will be granted a wish.) It’s a beautiful and sad story, which you can read more about here.

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What do you buy someone who has everything they need? What kind of gift conveys how much someone means to you? I’m not able to fold a thousand cranes, but I think paper origami stars would be a similarly welcome gift, not just for people who are ill necessarily, but for anyone.

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I don’t pretend to be an origami expert, in fact, the most ordinary origami often has me stumped. But even I was able to do this successfully (as were my 10 and 12 year olds)!

A bunch of these were made using special “paper star paper” I purchased in Chinatown, but if you have a paper cutter you can slice your own ribbons from ordinary paper instead.

Here are some good instructions. It might look overwhelming but you’ll get the hang of it quickly enough. Perhaps a video is more helpful. This one’s good:

Anyway, I think a jar full of stars would make a lovely gift idea for someone you know: whether they’re expecting their first baby, recovering in a hospital, or getting married.

What do you think? Would you like to receive a jar of stars? :)


4 Responses to "Catch a falling star"

1 | Tricia

April 6th, 2012 at 3:13 pm

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This sounds like a great idea for a friend of mine who will be stuck in the hospital on her 40th birthday. I had better start folding!

2 | April Duffy

April 6th, 2012 at 6:54 pm

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I can remember making these stars from the leftover side-strips from that old printer paper that came in rolls… you know the strip with the holes on either side that was perforated to tear off the sheet.
I can’t believe they sell paper strips for those now.
Cute idea anyhow.

3 | Carolyn

April 7th, 2012 at 6:06 am

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Can you pass along the name of the store in Chinatown? This would be ideal to keep 9 kids busy as I get Easter dinner prepared for guests and family. I haven’t shopped in Chinatown for a long time so I’m unsure where to go.
Thanks!

4 | andrea

April 7th, 2012 at 7:20 am

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Tricia – this would be perfect for a 40th birthday! For what it’s worth, the best place to get funky jars are secondhand stores. We’ve had great success at Value Village and the Salvation Army.

April- Ha! Those are the perfect size for this project, and it’s easy enough to cut your own strips out of origami and scrapbook paper. There are some pretty cool patterns of star paper, ones with little sayings, glow-in-the-dark, Hello Kitty etc. Some patterns are meant to fit the dimensions of the paper exactly.

Carolyn – I should have mentioned this, sorry! I found the paper at Global Homeware on Somerset but many Asian markets probably sell it.

There are places to buy the paper online too, including Ebay and some Etsy vendors. While I was looking around I saw a way to make your own origami star paper too: Check this out.

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My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our two daughters Emma (16) and Sarah (14). I am the managing editor of our community newspaper, the Kitchissippi Times, and a regular contributor to MediaSmarts.ca. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger, and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999... which makes me either a total dinosaur or a veteran, I'm not sure which! The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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