Happy New Year! Ogawa’s “Good Fortune” Crane (福鶴)

Ogawa's "Fukuzuru" ("Good Fortune Crane")

Created by: OGAWA Masahiko

Published in: 鶴の折り紙 (tsuru no origami, “crane origami”) ISBN: 9784834725674, out of print, available used in Japan; Crane Origami available at Amazon; video instructions on Youtube (also embedded below.)

Why: A Japanese friend on Facebook posted a picture of a couple of these that she had folded, and I loved the way they looked. (I’m a sucker for orizuru variations, what can I say.) It turns out I have one of the books they’re diagrammed in, so of course I had to try one. And it also seemed like a fitting and auspicious thing to fold as my first origami of the New Year!

They’re a neat design, though not exactly easy to fold. The head and tail end up much thicker (many more layers) than a traditional crane, so you have to be very aware of the paper creep/layering while you fold it, and it’s hard to get a nice sharp point. The layers do stress the paper a bit, too, so you have to be careful. Using a strong paper (like washi) helps, but it is possible from regular origami paper, too.

In the photo, from left to right, they’re folded from regular origami paper, machine-made chiyogami, and washi chiyogami.

I’m not exactly sure why this design is viewed as auspicious or fortunate, something to research. But it’s a nice piece, I’m very glad to have found it.

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