About

Cost
$ $ $ $ $
Difficulty
• • • • •
Time
15 mins

Origami Activities for Kids
Design by Michael LaFosse

The Daruma is a popular toy in Japan. The toy is based on a famous Indian monk, Bodhidharma, who brought Buddhism to China over fifteen hundred years ago. One story about Bodhidharma tells how he once sat in meditation for almost ten years, his legs wasting away to nothing. So the Daruma doll resembles a red- robed monk with no legs.
The Daruma toys are always sold “eyeless”
so that the person receiving the Daruma toy
can make a wish by painting in one of the eyes. Legend has it that the Daruma, wanting the other eye, will help the wish to come true. In gratitude for the wish being granted, the recipient of the wish must paint in the other eye.
The Daruma doll is commonly bought at the beginning of the new year, when hope for positive change is highest.
The origami Daruma doll can be used in the same tradition: Make a wish and fold in one eye; when your wish comes true, you can fold in the other eye! This makes for a wonderful New Year activity. Make origami Darumas and mail them to your friends!

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© 2019 Michael G. LaFosse / Tuttle Publishing · Reproduced with permission.
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  • How to fold an origami character. Origami Daruma Doll - Step 1
    Step 1

    Begin with the white side up, if you are using origami paper. Fold in half, from corner to corner, and unfold.

  • How to fold an origami character. Origami Daruma Doll - Step 2
    Step 2

    Fold in the two bottom edges to meet at the crease.

  • How to fold an origami character. Origami Daruma Doll - Step 3
    Step 3

    First fold down the
    top corner to meet
    the two square
    corners, then fold
    up the bottom corner
    to touch the middle of the top folded edge.

  • How to fold an origami character. Origami Daruma Doll - Step 4
    Step 4

    Fold down part of the top layers.

  • How to fold an origami character. Origami Daruma Doll - Step 5
    Step 5

    Fold down the top edge to meet at the level of the two square corners. Fold out the two square corners to make paper for the eyes.

  • How to fold an origami character. Origami Daruma Doll - Step 6
    Step 6

    Fold up the bottom corner and tuck it under the top folded edge. This will be the Daruma’s nose!

  • How to fold an origami character. Origami Daruma Doll - Step 7
    Step 7

    Your paper will look like this. Turn the paper over.

  • How to fold an origami character. Origami Daruma Doll - Step 8
    Step 8

    Fold in the top left and right edges.

  • How to fold an origami character. Origami Daruma Doll - Step 9
    Step 9

    Make the shape more rounded by folding over a little of each of the four corners, as indicated. Turn the paper over.

  • How to fold an origami character. Origami Daruma Doll - Step 10
    Step 10

    The Daruma is ready to use! First, make a wish and fold over one eye corner to make the pupil show.

  • How to fold an origami character. Origami Daruma Doll - Step 11
    Step 11

    This is the Daruma doll when a wish has been made.

  • How to fold an origami character. Origami Daruma Doll - Step 12
    Step 12

    Acknowledge and be thankful to the Daruma by folding over the other eye when your wish comes true!

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