Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Kusudama Fun

Sometimes I pursue artistic endeavors other than photography.  Really I do...maybe not as often as I used to, but I'm feeling drawn to crafty activities in recent weeks.  The photo at left is a Kusudama that I created.  It is made of 60 pieces of origami paper, folded into 60 petals that are glued together to make 12 flowers which are in turn glued together to form a ball.

The word kusudama literally means "medicine ball" and is comprised of two Japanese words - kusuri, meaning medicine; and tama, meaning ball.  Kusudamas originate from ancient Japanese culture, and were possibly originally made of actual herbs and flowers.  They are now generally made of paper and typically used for decorations or gifts.  The individual components may be glued or sewn together.

Having made the individual flowers before, I set out to make my first kusudama - not really thinking about how long it would take me to make 60 origami petals.  About 20 petals in I started reconsidering - this was hard work!  After 10 or so more, it became almost calming.  And with my two daughters happily making origami hearts, houses and pianos next to me, this ended up being a wonderful craft project for us to do together.

My final project is not perfect - there are some crooked petals, and a few are not glued to the opposite petals that they should be...but it's beautiful to me and I'm proud of it!!!

Interested in making a kusudama??  Here is a link to a great tutorial on how to make the kusudama flower (which can be used by itself if you like - glue a craft stem to the center and set in a vase).  And part two of the tutorial explains how to make the kusudama ball.  

"Flowers seem intended for the solace of ordinary humanity" ~ John Ruskin

Happy Crafting!!!