Menko and Tato - folded origami letters

Okay, so we all agree that Valentines Day is a nasty old capitalist conspiracy. Now that we've gotten that out of our systems, I was thinking, maybe you have someone to give a small gift to on Sunday, or perhaps a flower? Or just a few words, or something?

So, after blogging under this name (look up at title header) for years, it's a bit odd that I've never done a Valentines post before, I guess. And since I started liking to fold small, practical origami bags, boxes, envelopes, etc., one thing lead to another.

Go make someone smile on Valentines Day - or is it Galentines? Or Palentines? Either way, these are fun to make, and very, very easy. They are big enough for a letter, saying you promise to empty the dishwasher more often - or a photo, a movie ticket, a diamond ring. 

Under each photo, links and explanations - and at the end of the post, links to the special, pretty red/pink large origami papers I have made especially for these. All of them are two sided, because these designs look so much better with color and pattern on both sides of the paper. 

I have saved you a lot of time and found the videos on YouTube (there are thousands of origami videos, and I promise you I have found a couple that are tested by me and easy to follow!) Happy folding!

Now, these - I call them Pinwheel Cards - are not even real origami. They are the most basic way to fold an envelope, but added a little twist. Make them from my template, that is by far the easiest way, and the template (print one on card stock and cut it out, and use it again and again) also explains the eight easy folds you have to make. 

This is a basic One Sheet Menko, the simplest kind of origami envelope. It is a nifty little container, and of the four variations shown in this blog post, this the strongest, and one that actually closes tightly. It divides the paper into nine squares, which means it will be quite small. 

This I will call a Pinwheel Tato - 'tato' being another kind of origami envelope - and it is also very simple, and only requires a bit of skill when the last fold is to be tucked under the first, for closing. You will make a couple of very messy looking ones first, and then you will get it. 

And now the last design: let's call it a Diagonal Pinwheel Tato. It is the trickiest, but actually I think it's a bit easier than the one above, it locks or closes more snugly. 

Follow the advice in the video and use a thin knitting pin or something like that, plus a ruler, to score the diagonal lines before folding them. It really works! And about half way in the video you will go: 'Whaaat??' - but watch it again, try, and soon you will see. And these odd looking folds will magically twist into this beautiful little flexible thing. I love that kind of origami!

And now; the origami papers. All the ones shown in the photos above, for free download! Have fun.

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