The Art of Paper Design – Interview with OCO_Origami
“The Fashion Side of Origami”
Sorbet Spike Ball Dress made with our Sorbet Cardstock
In this series of the Art of Paper Design, we interviewed Origamist and designer of OCO_Origami, Christine Ott. Through the ancient practice of folded paper known as origami, Christine expresses her love and appreciation of the art form with a range of intricately stunning paper designs.
“OCO is art in both form and function which conveys the positive message. The origami fashion project is an extension of that…every time I folded a Kusudama or an origami flower or a module, I was thinking about how it could be incorporated into something wearable. That mindset helped me see origami beyond what it is on its own; as a beautiful Kusudama, or a stand-alone design to how it would look if could be worn”- OCO_Origami
Read on to learn more about Christine and her eye-catching origami fashion designs! Also check out our previous interview with her here.
Tell me about your Fashion Origami Project. What is it all about?
I’ve been folding Origami for about 5 years. My sister is the one who encouraged me to start an Instagram page. I’m so glad she did! Not only is it a wonderful way to share your work and how you work with paper but it’s such an unbelievable opportunity to learn more about the craft. It would be impossible to say that you don’t take influence from the other amazing Origamists. I have discovered amazing designs and tutorials and have pushed myself to try new designs at every opportunity. The origami fashion project is an extension of that. A way to express myself through color/paper/design, bringing together a love for origami in a way that will allow these designs to be worn. And what better way for someone to see, appreciate and be able to interact with Origami than to see it walking by or to wear it.
Sonobe Origami Skirt made with our Sorbet Cardstock
How did you come up with the inspiration for your origami fashion designs?
I have seen origami dresses on the Internet. When I started following a San Diego page for @polychromist and saw her modeling dresses and her love of color, I reached out to her to see if she would be interested in collaborating on an Origami fashion project. She said “yes”. I had been considering different ways to create wearable art and made a simple skirt from white paper and Sonobe unites, similar to what I had seen online. Then, I started looking at different modules I have folded and how/if they could be used for skirts and dresses. There was a lot of thought put into the “how” of making origami dresses wearable and still more to perfect, but the folding is what I love and pushing myself to do more has always been a motivator.
My first creations were made to compliment local San Diego sculptures that @polychromist found. So the inspiration was to match a paper design to a sculpture in both form and color. The dresses were being worn by a talented model and photographed by a professional photographer, so it truly was a melding of art. The modules are not my own but when I saw how they were used by other Instagram artists, it helped me see them in light of fashion and the folding began.
Origami Lovely Cherry Blossom Skirt made with our Sorbet Cardstock
What made you want to expand your designs from origami modules to designing clothing using paper?
Pushing myself to be more creative and being able to visualize how origami modules could be used to create something wearable really motivated me. My thoughts were focused on wearable art so every time I folded a Kusudama or an origami flower or a module, I was thinking about how it could be incorporated into something wearable. That mindset helped me see origami beyond what it is on its own; as a beautiful Kusudama, or a stand-alone design to how it would look if could be worn.
Christine made this Kudusama Flower Hat and Skirt with our Sorbet Cardstock!
What is your favorite part of being a paper art designer?
Choosing the module, then the paper and seeing what I had in my head come to life. Every time I see new paper, more of the gorgeous paper packs and color combinations put together by @printworksdiy and the different colors and tones I could work with, it makes me want to move to the next design before the first one is finished.
Do you have any upcoming projects?
Yes, I do! I’ll be participating in the La Jolla Art and Wine Festival in San Diego. They reached out via my Instagram page to discuss an installation. For the festival, I will be decorating an 8’ x 12’ mural with butterflies. We discussed a few ways to create the mural and decided on a white butterfly base and then adding more at the festival. I’ll be teaching how to fold butterflies so festival goers can add the butterflies they fold to the mural. It will be an active creation, I’m excited to see how it will turn out. And there will be blank white paper at the mural for kids to color. Once the kids finish their drawings, I’ll teach them how to fold it into a butterfly. I’ve taught classes at the local library and, once we can do that again I am very interested in continuing with classes. It’s so much fun to teach and to see people of all ages really enjoy folding.
Pyramid Origami Skirt and Spike Ball Belt
I am also available for installations, corporate gifting, classes, collaborations, and anything Origami. For myself, I will continue to fold and try new models to push myself to learn more. And I love the fashion side of Origami so I will continue looking for new ways to create wearable art. I decorated a Japanese screen with cherry blossom origami flowers and would love to create more of those once this one finds a home. One of my favorite things to do is discuss a project and find ways origami can make an event special. The possibilities really are endless.