Wednesday, July 25, 2007

A New Fold

The origami cranes from polymer clay have been a decided hit, both in sales, awards. It took me nearly three years to commit to them as a part of my product line. Last year I made the commitment, came up with suitable packaging, an insert, and started promoting them. It was the best business decision I ever made,...even if I had to be dragged to that decision!

My resistance came from several places. In part they were different than the rest of my work. Part of me looked at it as a party trick of sorts, and not a lot more. I would sell them at the holidays, but without packaging or information. I was afraid it would take over my life. I would do nothing but fold cranes. And last fall that was largely true. But supply and demand eventually come into play. I raised the price, and things have reached a more manageable level.

At several shows, I have had conversations about the cranes with origami afficianados. They have belonged to Origami USA, a national organization to promote origami. The organization helps to promote exhibits such as the one currently on display at the Peabody Essex Museum, in Salem, MA. At the Guilford show, I had such a conversation. And this time I went and signed up to become a member of the organization. Poking around on the website led me to play around with a few new designs, first on paper, and then in clay. The one I love is the 8 Point Star. I modified the folds of the design by Michael Shall to fold it from polymer clay. And here is the result....
I think I will be seeing stars in my future......
Michael Shall, by the way, worked as an assistant to Alice Gray at the Museum of Natural History in New York. She was the first to decorate a 25 foot tree at the museum with origami ornaments. She had to enlist the help of other museum workers, scout troops, and members of Origami USA to complete the task, but it has become an annual tradition now. Mr. Shall spread the tradition to the New York offices of Japan Air Lines, and eventually to Britian as well. He helped with the decoration of a 45 foot tree in Eindhoven at a shopping center in 1993. Origami Christmas trees have spread worldwide, and are the best advertisement for paperfolding. Michael Shall died in 1995 at the very young age of 45. But his contributions to building the tradition of the origami Christmas tree will live on.

1 comment:

Libby said...

Judy, I think that star will be a great new addition to your product line! You continue to impress me.