When you think about origami, chances are you think of all the fun shapes that you can make or perhaps you have seen some origami that is really intricate. Most of us have dabbled in origami at some point in our lives. While some of us used origami to fold notes passed in school, others found ways of transforming ordinary candy wrappers into works of miniature art. If you have never tried origami, you may think it’s as easy as finding some instructions and following them. While this is not entirely true, making origami is relatively simple with the right instructions and, the most vital component to origami, which many people overlook, the origami paper.
Origami paper is ideal for all of your origami projects, especially if you’re a beginner. Origami paper is thinner than traditional printing paper, making it easier to fold and manipulate; it is usually colored on one side as well. Although this one sided coloring certainly adds to the aesthetic appeal of whatever origami shape you are making, it is also helpful in distinguishing the various fold which many origami shapes require. Having one side colored helps to keep the origami folder on track as it can be very difficult to remember every turn if both sides of the origami shape are identical. Origami paper is also available in many different textures and designs, making your figures an even more tactile experience. If you prefer color on both sides of your paper, there are origami designs that come with complimentary colors on either side of the paper. This way you can still keep track of which side of the figure that you are working on without the ordinary white of the paper showing through.
Typically, people doing origami casually, either won’t have origami paper on hand or are not willing to go get some. However, there are several other materials you can use for your origami projects. The next best option for origami paper is using ordinary printing paper as it is far more common and therefore less expensive. Make sure that you cut the paper to the exact square shape necessary for origami before starting an origami project. Of course, while you can use colored paper, avoid card stock as it is far too thick for origami.
If you want to try working with an origami material that is a bit more creative, try using magazine pages or newspaper. The same rules so make sure that you cut the paper to an exact square, especially if you are making origami shapes that are intended for beginners. If you want to branch out a bit and try some origami shapes that are a bit more daring. Consider using something like a dollar bill to create modular, or multi piece, origami items. Other materials such as tin foil, wax paper or tissue paper may be fun to experiment with, but realize that these odd materials may simply not be conducive to easy origami making.