An origami desk calendar is about as much fun for paper craft enthusiasts as you can fit into a single box. These annual paper-folding sets make great gifts for creative people.
Since they work from the first of January onwards, they are perfect to give for Christmas. If you're looking for a particularly cool, unique and inexpensive gift for a crafter, this Page-a-Day idea is something that I can personally recommend.
As with many of these boxed, daily versions, it's really not that useful as a calendar. It might just serve as a kind of visual marker and a fun way to count down the days, weeks and months in each year. However, you cannot use this type of design as a way of organizing your schedule or for listing appointments. For an adult or an older child who is really into making models and paper crafting, this is a lot of fun.
Create a New Design Every Day
I love paper crafting and folding in particular so the prospect of having something quick to make up every day is a really appealing one. There are a number of these sets available every year but I really like this Page-a-Day version with Margaret Van Sicklen.
Many of the origami designs are quick and simple to make. People who already have some experience of paper-folding should find them particularly easy. If you are new to origami then there are instructions enclosed in with the set. This is great for older kids who already have some experience with this craft and perfect for adults who still like to play with paper.
Example of The Project Sheets in the Box
You may want to know what you can expect in this type of box set. Here is an example photo of the folding instructions and diagrams in one of my own origami calendar sets. It depends on what set you get but, when you get your box, the lid can often be flipped back to create a stand. The stand provides a way that you can keep your set propped up and open on your desk, shelf or work surface. This gives you easy access to start a new little folding project every day.
The sets come included with a guide to all the folding symbols which is very handy for those who've never done origami before. You get instructions for all the basic folding techniques and the base folds too. Base folds are common instructions to refer to when making more complex designs.
In my sets, all the important pieces of information are on tabbed pieces of card. This makes it easy to find and refer to the instructions when you need extra help with making a design.
Each sheet of paper has instructions to make up a design on one side and some colored and sometimes patterned paper on the other. The sheets are 6 x 6 inches which is a standard size of paper for the craft of origami.
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How the Origami Calendars Work
You are given instructions in the set which tell you which sheet of paper you need to start with for making the January 1st project. The folding paper is either a solid color or a pattern. You use the paper for making your design while referring to the instructions that are on another page. On January the 2nd, you will use the sheet for January 1st to fold with. So sheets come with pattern instructions on one side and colored paper on the other.
Each sheet has folding instructions or tips on one side and colored paper on the other. This clever process means that everything needed is in the box. Some of the patterned origami papers are really good. However, I prefer to keep my box set and instructions pristine since I often want to fold the models again. I prefer to use my paper sheets for folding instead of the ones provided.
Get Creative Daily with a Fun Desk Calendar
Of course, these are not really daily calendars at all. You cannot mark down a schedule or your appointments for the day. You cannot even take notes or really use these to keep track of the date. The only sense in which they are a calendar is simply because you get a fun paper craft activity to do on a set date.
This could change in future versions but in some sets that I've owned, you get folding patterns and diagrams for the days through Monday to Friday. At the weekend you either get a joint project that works across both days or some tips and ideas to read instead. So sometimes there is not actually something to make on every single day. That aspect is disappointing on the days when there is nothing to fold.
There are often lots of animals and insects to make, some everyday objects like clothes, vehicles such as cars and boats, shapes, flowers and novelty items to make. Sometimes you have more technical things such as origami folding bases to learn which allows you to improve on this craft. There are often lots of quick and simple projects with the focus on fun. For a craft geek like me, it is something to look forward to each morning and it will make a fantastic gift.
Image Credits: The introductory image belongs to the author, Marie Williams Johnstone. All other images (unless watermarked with the author’s name) are product photos from Amazon.