Us Brits tend to get a bit carried away over with Christmas gifts, with the Bank of England suggesting that the average household spends around £700 more in December than in any other month. But who said Christmas had to have such a negative effect on our bank balance?

Lots of people have gotten crafty in the last couple of years and handmade gifts are more popular than ever. With that in mind, we’d like to suggest one technique for making unique gifts and decorations that’s close to our hearts – the traditional Japanese art of origami!

A person folding a piece of paper to create origami

What Is Origami?

A great way to show off your dexterity and creativity, origami Christmas decorations are cost-effective, easy to make and most importantly, stunning. Origami (ori- kami) is the act of folding paper, and has been practised in Japan since the 17th century. Traditionally used in Japanese ceremonies and exchanged as tokens of good luck between Samurai, origami is a respected art form, sculpting something from nothing and making the seemingly ordinary beautiful, as well as an effective form of creative therapy.

The colour, design and shape possibilities within the field of origami are only as limited as your imagination. However, it is a good idea to think carefully about which is the right origami paper for your project before you get crafting, as this will ensure that you end up with a sculpture of the desired size and pattern.

A hand offering a wrapped Christmas present

Christmas Origami Ideas

At The Japanese Shop we used a selection of our authentic, patterned origami and premium washi papers to craft some of our favourite decorations, and there are so many easy Christmas origami ideas to choose from. Check out the handy step-by-step instructions to make this cute Christmas bauble, an adorable 3D Christmas tree or even Santa Claus himself! Check out our origami ideas guide to see some of the websites we love most to learn new origami forms.

Make sure you don’t leave the kids out – our children’s origami sets are perfect for little hands, with a fascinating range of craftable projects with clear, step-by-step instructions.

Origami santa, christmas tree and snowman.

To hone your origami skills further after Christmas is over, our origami books are full of amazing origami ideas to keep you busy all year round. Check out our blog also for more resources on all things Japanese at Christmastime, from Japanese Christmas gift ideas to how to prepare for a Japanese Christmas. Alternatively, if handmade gifts aren’t your thing, feel free to browse our range of authentic, high-quality Japanese gifts!

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