Friday, March 20, 2009

Origami Gift Card Envelope

Many who have grown up in the islands have some form of paper folding or origami experience under their belt. Hawaii has a large Japanese population, dating back to it's early plantation days, a period where people from many countries immigrated to the islands in search of jobs in the sugarcane and pineapple industries. Due to Hawaii's diverse culture, the arts and crafts of the many ethnicities slowly melded into the lives of all islanders. Over the years, it would have been difficult not to have learned some form of origami as it was often introduced to elementary aged students in art classes.

Folded paper ball.

There have been many times in my life that I recall paper folding coming in handy. Most recently, on my airplane trip back from Washington,D.C., where I encountered a restless toddler in the seat behind me. I tore out the back page of my crossword puzzle book and made an origami paper crane for her. This took her mind off of her boredom for a little while.

Folded paper tsuru (crane).

I am sure that many of you will recall in the "old days" how heavily we relied on drinking fountains in public places to quench our thirst. Those were the days prior to the ubiquitous disposable water bottles of today. When my son was young and unable to reach the water fountain on his own, I would hoist him up trying my best to keep his face in the perfect position for drinking. More times than not, he would come away with water up his nose and his face and shirt soaking wet. Ha! Then I got smart and started keeping a few paper drinking cups with me to eliminate the mess. Because they folded flat, they took very little space in my handbag.

Well, those days are long gone and the idea of drinking from a public water fountain now grosses me out. Those paper cups that I carried with me have taken on a new identity and have now become envelopes for gift cards.

I start with an 8-1/2-inch square piece of card stock which makes the perfect sized envelope for most gift cards. The folds are exactly the same as for the drinking cups. I punch 2 holes into the outside face of the flap which will accommodate the fabric pin that I will be using as an envelope topper. Do not punch completely through both layers of the flap, just the outside.

Before folding the pointed ends over, slide your gift card into the envelope (in the opening between the points).

Do not separate and fold the pointed flaps to either side as if to make a cup, instead, fold both flaps to the front. Tuck both into the opening in the flap with the holes.

Top with a cute fabric pin. Voila! Two gifts in one!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone. Create! Create! Create!



Sew Many Ways... said...

I just became a follower of your blog, it's wonderful. Thanks so much for this tutorial and all the others're very talented!!

The Blue Plum Shop said...

That is so cute. I bought a pattern for an origami star at Christmas time but I never had time to make one yet.
Have you done those?

Carrie @ Cottage Cozy said...

You are so clever! I love that idea. Of course I also remember the "Paper Fortune Tellers", kind of American Origami! haha My younger daughter still makes those with her friends! I always love to see what you might create!

Stay Cozy, Carrie

Craftpassion said...

Oh Origami crane, I made lots of them during my teenage, it does bring back my memories.
I do have problem to remember the step of folds for the origami, I would need to refer to the book again to fold one :p

Rumi said...

As always, very clever and cute!

Carla said...

I love origami. 20 years ago I helped teach the crane to students, then we sent thousands to Japan. One year our Christmas decorations were totally origami. Lot of the balls.

Mom2fur said...

That's such a cute idea! I can do the balloon and crane, so I guess I could do the 'cup-turned-into-envelope,' too. I'll have to keep it in mind next time I have a gift card to give. It would sure make it less boring!

SG said...

So cute! Thanks for the great idea!

sweetiepie said...

Cute idea. Thanks for sharing.

Take care.

Netter said...

How cute! You always come up with such clever ideas.

Cheryl Lynn Hirzel said...

Love how you were able to use the jeans buttons! Could you please tell me how did you attach them to the flower?

Carrie P. said...


Suze said...

Cute, I like how you jazzed it up with a flower pin. I've always used those to hold coins or other small items when I didn't have anything else to put them in.

Lorraine said...

I love origami. A friend of mine calls me Princess Origami because when we take a class and something has to be folded I'm usually the one who can figure it out. What a great way to display your beautiful pin!