Monday, May 31, 2010

Origami Lucky Star Tutorial

Hi, everyone!
There are many legends surrounding these stars - they bring good luck in life and in love! Giving a jar full of stars is a sign of friendship and devotion.
So, I made a tutorial on how to create a Origami Lucky Star

Please let me know if you have any questions
I want to thank Cheryl for the idea!

Decoration tips

I searched on the internet for some decoration ideas and here is what I found....
  • The great thing about these stars is that you can made them as small as you like and create jewelry

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  • You can create Christmas Decorations:
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  • Make dozens and dozens of the tiny, colorful stars. Each can be for the same hope or dream, or you can write a different wish in each. Fill up a tall, clear glass Dream Star jar or bottle. Place a ribbon around the neck of the jar or bottle. Use it as a decoration on your desk or in your room.
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For more photos click here.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Another lily kusudama

I wasn't pleased with my first attempt to turn lilies into a kusudama (you can see it here ), so I tried another way to assembly the flowers and I love the result!


Did you know....

...that origami doesn't just cover immobile things, it also covers moving objects? Origami can move in clever ways. This technique is called Action Origami and includes origami that can fly,or the ones that use kinetic energy of a person's hands which applied to a certain region on the model can move any flap or limb. Bangers are models that make a noise when flicked down hard.
Action origami is normally perceived as a tool built to amuse but some are designed to inspire wonder.

Yami Yamauchi has designed some action origami.
He is an origami enthusiast, a teacher, and an innovator who has created many, many models that have inspired and delighted origami followers. He teaches and promotes origami at schools, in community organizations and motivational seminars. Yami Yamauchi was the 2006 receiver of the Ranana Benjamin Award from Origami USA honoring his contributions as a teacher. This honor goes to an origami teacher, particularly those who work with children, for outstanding contributions in the teaching of origami.
"Within a single sheet of paper exists unlimited beautiful forms, which you will enjoy, ORIGAMI." -Yami
"Life is Beautiful", pictured above, was a collaborative effort with John Andrisan (mathematical graphics), Joe Hamamoto (folding) and Peter Kuo (Chinese caligraphy).

In this video you can see a demo of 9 origami action models designed by Yami Yamauchi.
1) Jacob's Ladder
2) Super Jumping Frog
3) Doodlebug
4) Fireworks
5) Magic Wallet
6) Magic CD Case
7) Little Blow Top
8) Dreidel
9) Spinning Top

PS: aimee, thanks again! :*

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The beautiful side of... walking

     Spring is here, so it’s time to enjoy nature's bounty. I decided to go walking every day for at least an hour. Going outside and experiencing nature in itself it’s a wonderful activity that is good for both your physical and mental health. Just observing the nature can be healing.
Coming from a country like Romania, you learn to appreciate the little things:
  • enjoying the cleanness of the streets
  • listening to the birds singing in their little nests built by ordinary people in their own gardens and it feels like they're welcoming me in the neighborhood 
  • admiring the rivers that seems to be everywhere and gives the landscape a really nice scent of magic
  • the ducks that are craving for your attention and your food(of course)
  • the lack of homeless dogs (although I have to admit that I’m afraid of dogs in general and that’s one of the reasons I can’t really enjoy walking in the parks)
  • the smiles on every person’s face, even strangers
  • realizing how soothing it’s to rest under a tree
  • smelling an entire field of flowers, enjoying every flower’s beauty and delicacy
  • enjoying the freshness of the air, full of smells of the earth, sweeping over your face
 I realize that the simplicity of nature makes me fell invigorated, peaceful and grateful.
And because I always go outside on my own (I think this is the only thing that sometimes bothers me) I do take my mp3 with me and enjoy my music, only happy music.

So if you're wondering what it’s on my mp3....

PS: Thanks aimee for your help :)

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Lily Kusudama

A stunning kusudama made from 24 lily flowers



Here is the tutorial for lily flower:

And the assembly part:

Did you know?

Ten Things to Try If You Get Stuck:

Everyone hits an origami brick wall sooner or later, but don’t panic –here are a number of alternatives for you to try:
  •  Ask a friend to fold the model with you.
  •  Forget what you were folding, and make something else.
  • Look at the next drawing and bodge it.
  •  Re-read the text more carefully.
  • Throw away the model and start again.
  •  Try it again with a larger square.
  •  Have a cup of tea before coming back to it.
  •  Leave it overnight before coming back to it.
  •  Leave it a week before come back to it (and so on).
  • Write to me and ask for help Photobucket

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Spiky star and Sunken Sonobe Buckyball

Here are some more origami items that I made couple of days ago.


Here is the tutorial:



And the tutorial:


Did you know? 
that origami is also present in the fashion world?

Origami Fashion is being prototyped at the Design Laboratory at the Central Saint Martins School of Art in London, UK.

In origami fashion, a person takes a piece of material and through a series of simple folds, transforms a two-dimensional layer of fabric into a three-dimensional accessory.

The art of origami has inspired lots of fashion designers. Here are some of their stunning work:


Thursday, March 25, 2010

Walking For a Healthier Mind

One of the most natural things that an individual does every day is to walk. For years, this single act has been linked to improving cardiovascular health. The reason is because, generally, walking is a safe movement that isn't likely to cause injury. New studies have shown that walking is also a terrific way to improve your mood. The next time you are feeling a little blue, there may be a way to walk it off - literally.

A recent study paired individuals into groups, one of which spent 30 minutes on a treadmill and the other that participated in 30 minutes of rest. Each group's progress was monitored throughout the treatment with a conclusion that both groups reported having less negative feelings at the end of the study, along with less stress and tension. The difference, however, was found when the group that spent 30 minutes walking also noted an overall improvement in well-being.

 "A vigorous five-mile walk will do more good for an unhappy but otherwise healthy adult than all the medicine and psychology in the world."  ~Paul Dudley White


Walking can help relieve stress.

Walking gives you time to think, as well as time to get away from the stressors. Getting out of the stressful environment, breathing the air and feeling your body move is natural stress-relief.

Some walking benefits:

  •      Put physical and mental distance between you and the stress-causing environment.
  •      Time away from the stressors to clear your head.
  •      Many people carry stress by tensing their muscles. By getting into your correct walking posture and form, you unknot those muscles and put them to work. Learn How to Walk
  •      Observe the environment around you, enjoy the trees, flowers, birds, gardens, sky, storefronts.
  •     Feel your body in motion, reconnect with yourself.
  •     Wear off stress-eating related calories.
  •     Take time to work through problems and possible solutions as you walk.
  •     Talk and laugh with your walking partner to relieve the stress.
  •     Let off steam and vent with your walking partner.
  •     See that there is more to life than your problems.
  •     Lower your blood pressure and your heart health risk which can be increased by stress.
  •     Improves mental alertness and memory
  •     Spurs intellectual creativity and problem solving
  •     Elevates mood
  •     Helps prevent and/or reduce depression
  •     Improves your self-esteem

Walking For a Healthier Body

In today's fast paced life, people are leading a very unhealthy lifestyle. The increasing rate of health diseases, stress levels, lack or inadequate sleep are caused due to the fast paced life style. 

Walking is the most safest start towards exercise routine.
There’s no doubt about it, walking is good for you. It’s good for your heart, it’s good for your lungs, it’s good for the muscle and bone. Strong scientific evidence now supports the many benefits to health of regular walking.

"I have two doctors, my left leg and my right." George Trevelyan, 1913

Health benefits of walking:

-Improves efficiency of your heart and lungs

-Burns body fat

-Raises your metabolism so you are burning calories faster, even while you rest

-Helps control your appetite

-Increases your energy

-Slows aging

-Reduces levels of cholesterol in your blood

-Lowers high blood pressure

-Helps control and prevent diabetes

-Reduces risk of some forms of cancer including colorectal, prostrate, and breast

-Aids rehabilitation from heart attack and stroke

-Promotes intestinal regularity

-Helps promote restful sleep

-Strengthens muscles of your legs, hips, and torso

-Strengthens your bones and reduces bone density loss in older women

-Reduces stiffness in your joints due to inactivity or arthritis

-Relieves most cases of chronic backache

-Improves flexibility

-Improves posture

-Promotes healthier skin due to increased circulation

Some quick facts about walking:

-On average, every minute of walking can extend your life by 1.5 to 2 minutes. That's about a 2 for 1 trade-off!

-Walking an extra 20 minutes each day will burn off 7 pounds of body fat per year.

-To burn off 1 plain M&M candy, you need to walk the full length of a football field. Think about that next time you dip your hand into a candy bowl at someone's office!

-Longer, moderately-paced daily walks (40 minutes at 60% to 65% maximum heart rate) are best for losing weight.

-Shorter, faster walks (20-25 minutes at 75% to 85% maximum heart rate) are best for conditioning your heart and lungs.


Q: What's the best time of day to walk?
A: It varies from one person to the next.
The question is, when are you most willing and able to walk? That's the best time for you.

Q: What's the simplest way to determine how fast I'm walking?
A: The easiest way to gauge your speed without wearing a pedometer is to count your number of steps per minute.
  • 70 steps per minute equals 30 minutes per mile, or 2 miles per hour.
  • 105 steps per minute equals 20 minutes per mile, or 3 miles per hour.
  • 140 steps per minute equals 15 minutes per mile, or 4 miles per hour.
Q: How many calories do I burn by walking a mile?
A: The average 150-pound (68 kg) person burns between 80 and 100 calories per mile(1.6 km). 

Q: What's a good average walking speed?  
A: A good average walking speed is 3 to 4 miles per hour (mph) and depends on your leg length and how quickly you can move your legs.You may need to start at a slower pace if you're out of shape, but you will build up quickly if you walk regularly.

Q: Should I walk or run?
A: The benefits of running vs. walking
It is for both health and fitness. Many of the studies on exercise and chronic disease prevention use walking as the measurement. The risk of injury is low for walking, most everyone can do it, it burns calories, and it makes you fit and healthy. Jogging yields the same benefits as walking, but there is more impact on your knees, hips, and other joints.

Walking Mistakes to Avoid

1. Walking the right way can give you better health, fitness, and attitude. It can help you walk faster and more smoothly.
Walking the wrong way can lead to wasted effort or even injury, not to mention ridicule.


When walkers try to walk faster, a natural inclination is to lengthen your stride in front, reaching out further with your foward foot. This leads to a clumsy, ungainly gait, striking hard with the feet.
All of the power of your walk comes from pushing with the back leg and foot.
  • Shorter, Quicker Steps: If you are trying to walk fast, concentrate on taking shorter, quicker steps.
  • Roll Through, Push Off: Then think of really rolling through your step with your back foot and leg, getting a good push off.
The result will be faster feet and lengthening your stride where it does you some good - in back.

2. Flapping, Slapping Feet

Instead of rolling through the step with your forward foot from heel to toe, your foot is flattening out prematurely. Either you are fighting stiff, heavy shoes or your shins are too weak to let you roll through the step. 


  • Your feet hit the ground with a slap.
  • You land flat footed with each step and get no roll.
  • You may develop shin pain.
The Cure for Flapping, Slapping Feet
Get flexible shoes that bend at the ball of the foot. A pair of running shoes with a low heel is best.

3. No Arms

You keep your arms still at your sides while walking, or swing them without bending them. You notice that your hands swell quite a bit while walking.
A normal walking motion uses the arms to counterbalance the leg motion. A walker can add power and speed by using the arms effectively. Long, straight arms act like a long pendulum, slowing you down.

The cure: Bend your arms 90 degrees and swing them naturally back and forth opposite the leg motion.
4. Head Down

You are always looking down, hanging your head and staring at your feet.
The cure: Look up!
Good posture for walking allows you to breathe well and provides a long body line to prevent problems with your back, neck, and shoulders.
Chin up when walking - it should be parallel to the ground.
Your eyes should focus on the street or track 10 - 20 feet ahead. You'll avoid doggy doo-doo, find cracks in the sidewalk, spot potential muggers, and still collect the occasional coin.

5. Leaning
  • You lean forward more than 5 degrees
  • You lean back.
  • You have a sway back with or without a forward lean.
Somewhere you read to lean forward when walking. Or, you may be leaning back on your hips. Leaning forward or backwards or holding your back swayed can all result in back pain and do not contribute to speed or good technique.
The cure: Stand up straight but with relaxed shoulders, chin up and parallel to the ground. Think about walking tall. Think "suck in your gut, tuck in your butt."
Your back should have a natural curve, do not force it into an unnatural sway with behind out back stomach out forward.
Strengthen your abdominal muscles through sit-ups and other exercises so you are able to hold yourself straighter.

6. Not Drinking Enough

You don't drink enough water before, during, and after walking.
The cure: Drink a glass of water every hour throughout the day to stay hydrated. Ten minutes before your walk, drink a glass of water.
During your walk drink a cup or more of water every 20 minutes.
After you finish, drink a glass or two of water.
Avoid caffeinated beverages before your walk, they cause you to lose fluid, making you thirstier as well as making you take inconvenient stops along the way.
On walks over 2 hours, use an electrolyte-replacement sports drink and drink when thirsty.
On long distance walks, drink when thirsty and be sure to replenish salt with a sports drink rather than drinking only water.

7. Overtraining

You walk and walk and walk. But you have lost your enthusiasm. You feel tired, irritable. You always have aches and pains. You may be overdoing it.
The cure: Even the Creator rested on the seventh day.
Take a day off now and then to let your body repair, build up muscle, and store up some energy to get you back on the road again.
If you just can't stand a true day off, do some upper body weight training instead of walking and lower body work.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Origami Bucky Flower Ball

The first one is made from different colored paper, but the second one is made only from white paper, and I painted her, I wanted to look more like frangipani, which is my favorite flower :D


Did you know?

Origami Australia built an origami house big enough to walk into, complete with origami furniture and decorations. They used over one square kilometre of paper and over 15,000 separate creases resulting in 395 bricks. Over 2,000 man hours were needed and 4,512 cups of coffee!
Origami House in the great outdoors - photomontage by Matt Gardiner
Jun Maekawa's penguin, Flowers folded by June Sakamoto & Kay Eng- traditional lily, Yamaguchi's narcissus, Ted Normington's Daffodil. The vase is Verdi's vase. Sushi Tray by Matt Gardiner, Makoto Yamaguchi's sushi folded by Matt
Flowers & Sushi, Chairs & Table, crane arrangement in frame on wall by Brenda Saunders

more pictures:

Thursday, March 11, 2010

My origami collection

Origami, or paper folding, is a great tradition in Japan. It's very popular among both young and old people, and it has spread to other countries beyond Japan.
Origami is one of the simplest form of art because the only materials that you need are your hands and paper.
It's extraordinary how you can magically transform an everyday material into a living, breathing creation.

The possible origami creations are endless, from flowers to birds, from cars to clocks, from dung-beetles to elephants, but I like especially the geometric shapes.

Here’s a list of things you never knew about origami
  • The word origami has only been in use in the English language for 50 years.
  • You can fold a piece of paper in half more than seven times.
  • You can solve quadratic and cubic equations by folding paper.
  • The oldest known origami book, Hiden Senbazuru Orikata, was written in 1797.
  • The largest origami crane was 65 metres by 36 metres. The smallest was folded from a 0.25 millimetre square piece of audio tape by Akira Naito.
  • The simplest origami model has only one fold, the most complex more than 200 folds. 
  • There are more than 200 varieties of origami elephant.
  • You can make origami models from food, metal, mesh, money, and of course, paper.
  • Poppadom (People Out Practising Paperfolding and Dining on Masala) is a society dedicated to folding origami while eating curry.
  • Saburo Kase both created and taught origami, despite being blind.
And now, my collection....

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These are origami stars 


Did you know?

The tradition among many in the origami community is that if you fold 1000 of the traditional cranes or stars, you'll get a wish. This has taken on an additional meaning since World War II when a Japanese girl who was suffering from leukemia as a result of the radiation exposure from the nuclear attack on Hiroshima. She started folding cranes in the hopes that she would be able to recover. She did not finish before her death, but her classmates carried on with a wish for peace and to mourn the loss of everyone who lost their lives as a result of the atomic bombs. The Children's Peace Monument was put in place in her memory in Hiroshima and every year millions of paper cranes are left at the monument.

I only got 100, so I have a lot of work to do Photobucket
Sooo, if you had the chance to make a wish that will come true, what it will be?