Arts & crafts

5 Steps to Getting Started with Origami

10 Jun 2022 | Written by By Nick Robinson

My name is Nick Robinson and I’ve been a professional origami artist for over 40 years! In that time I’ve worked at hundreds of events and written over 100 books on the subject. It’s a lucky person who gets to do what he loves for a living!


Origami is the art of paper-folding and has been around for centuries, but it’s only in the past 30 years that it has really taken off, with the internet bringing the subject to a whole new audience. 



Why give origami a go?

Part of its appeal is simplicity: all you need is a sheet of paper and your hands. The activity is good for mindfulness, concentration, relaxation, dexterity and it’s also a great way to make new friends.


People are often slightly scared by origami, feeling they need some special talent to make it. Nothing could be further from the truth. Anyone can fold paper and with a little practice, you’ll wonder why you didn’t try it sooner! 



5 top tips for beginners

My top tips for folding include:


1. Take your time – it’s not a competition. Try to relax.


2. Fold on a table with good lighting.


3. Read the words as well as look at the pictures.


4. If you get stuck, try again after a night’s sleep – things will seem easier.


5. Enjoy your creations! 

One of the many joys of origami is that they bring a simple kind of joy to those who see your creations. Often, interesting animals and shapes can make for thoughtful gifts for a friend or grandchild, and are a perfect way to let them know you’re thinking of them. 



Where to start

I’m delighted to be working with The Joy Club and look forward to meeting you at one of my live classes. Whether at my session or on your own, there are only a few pieces of kit you’ll need to get started with origami…


What you’ll need

Origami works best using crisp paper, so the creases stay in place. Photocopy paper (which you can cut to a square) is perfect for practising, but perhaps a little dull for a final model – keep your eyes open in art/craft shops for paper with beautiful patterns and textures and build up a stock of paper to use when you have perfected the folding sequence. Commercial origami paper comes in a huge variety of colours and patterns but don’t use your best paper whilst practising!

Specialised origami paper comes in the shape of a square, typically 7.5 x 7.5cm. If you would like to purchase some online, you can buy paper from my website. If you enter the code joycluborigami you’ll get a discount of 5% off. 


Website: https://nickorigami.com/shop/ 

Code: joycluborigami

Enter this code during checkout to receive a 5% off discount. 


Useful resources

There are many resources that offer helpful guides to get you started, particularly on places like YouTube. I suggest trying a few videos, for example, but if the instructions are not clear, don’t get frustrated, just try another one. Or, come along to my live session for some personalised advice and to chat while we all work on some crafts. 


Try not to feel too disheartened if you find your first attempt at a new design a bit of a struggle. Instead, make the same model several times and you’ll notice that each time you’ll do it quicker, with greater ease and the resulting model will look better and better. Remember, anything needs practice to improve, and anything worth doing takes time. 


Here’s a simple model so you can have a go before my live class on Wednesday 15th June at 1pm

All you’ll need for this model is a rectangle of paper. Good luck!

The end result should look like this:

Have you been inspired by Nick to give origami a go? If you have a go at the design, why not share a picture of the results into the Club forum?

You can also find out more about joining Nick’s live class on Wednesday 15th June and book your place here

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