When I had a job one of my chiefest — and cheapest — pleasures was making origami greeting cards for everyone in my department, thirty or forty folks. I remember that tricky bunny I folded one Easter, those Mother’s Day bouquets, that cool dreidel for Hanukkah. But V-day was the best, because of the huge variety of possible models. The oeuvre of the great origamist Francis Ow could keep my fingers busy for decades;he was a folded heart specialist. Then you’ve got flowers, pandas kissing, devoted swan couples — you get the sappy idea. One of my favorites required two bluebirds carrying a heart: I carved a heart from a pencil eraser and stamped the image between the birds’ beaks.
Nothing flashy — just the models pasted to a 3X5 index cards, signed with my signature rubberstamped M. I didn’t even spend money on origami paper, I used up old rolls of gift wrap. Some co-workers tacked the cards to their cubicle walls, and yes, I loved the mini-galleries of my “work” as I strolled through the pods.
I fell from financial grace last week and ordered “10-Fold Origami” by Peter Engel I should have waited;I saw it in the library yesterday. But Engel has one sweet and easy Valentine’s Day model which would have been just the ticket for workplace romance.
Step 1: Square, colored side up.
Step2: Fold in half diagonally.
Step 3: Unfold, and repeat Step 2 on the other diagonal.
Step 4: Fold the corners to the center — you’re making a blintz base in origami-speak. Like this:
Step 5: Turn three of the flaps back until they don’t quite touch the white edges. (Italics because my picture isn’t clear about that.)
Step6: Unfold two opposing flaps and tuck under the points.
Step 7: Fold the flaps back again and you have a heart that looks as if it just popped out of an envelope!
Cheesy greeting is optional, but cheerful!