Ever since paper was first invented in China around the turn of the 2nd century A.D., people have enjoyed folding it into countless wonderful shapes and patterns. However, it wasn't until it was brought by traveling monks over to Japan in the sixth century, that paper folding really took wings (quite literally) and became a true art form, mirroring nature in all its glory, creating birds, reptiles, mammals, flower designs and geometric patterns. At first, as handmade paper was a luxury item available to only a select few in ancient Japanese feudal society, namely Shinto priests, it was strictly utilised for ceremonial purposes, often religious in nature.
Between 1603 - 1868 (the Edo period), paper folding had become recreational as well as ceremonial. Featuring many cutting and folding techniques, It came to be regarded as a new form of art that was enabled by the advent of paper both mass-produced and more affordable. Different paper folding "Schools" and "masters" of the new art began to appear and in 1797, written instructions for paper folding first appeared in the form of Akisato Rito’s Sembazuru Orikata, or “thousand crane folding.” Then, in 1845, Adachi Kazuyuki published a more comprehensive compilation of paper folding with Kayaragusa. By the late 1800s, it was a widely accepted cultural art form, the term for paper folding had morphed from orikata (“folded shapes”) to origami and the rest, as they say, is history.
Europe also has a tradition of paper folding. Around the eleventh or twelfth century, the Moors brought with them a tradition of mathematically based paper folding to Spain. The Spanish in turn developed it into an artistic form called papiroflexia (also known as "pajarita"). By the 1800s, kindergarten-aged children across Europe as well as Japan were paper folding, and there was no turning back.
We hope you enjoy this beautiful and exquisite art form which, apart from being a "super fun" activity, also develops a child's eye-hand coordination, spatial awareness, sequencing, mathematical reasoning, memory and fine motor skills, whilst teaching patience and mental concentration, not to mention creativity. A wonderful stress relieving, fun and rewarding activity the entire family can enjoy.
Features: 54 paper-folding pages
Product Theme: Animals & nature
Product Type: Origami Kit
Age Range: 2+
Warning: Keep far away from flames and sources of extreme heat