Add a little handmade love to your Christmas gifts with this DIY origami gift box. It’ll impress your family and friends, and you’ll find the art of origami therapeutic for your soul…
This DIY origami gift box is a simple activity extracted from the awesome new book, The Art of Mindful Origami by Dr. Richard Chambers. “We all know how amazing it feels to receive gifts,” explains Dr. Chambers. “And it feels even better to give them. Studies have shown that generosity and giving reduce stress, boost our happiness and even extend how long we live.”
Fill it with freshly baked cookies, or whatever your heart desires. It’s an awesome project and will add a whole new dimension to your gift wrapping. If you want to make a lid (or even a number of boxes), make multiple copies of the design. Then enlarge or shrink the copies to make boxes of different sizes. Clever. Creative. Soul-nurturing. Brilliant!
The Gift Of Mindful Giving: DIY Origami Gift Box Instructions
- Take a few moments to close your eyes and focus on your breathing. Once you have become present, have a think about the people in your life who you care about the most.
- Choose one of these people and bring them to mind. Really picture them in front of you, seeing their face. Tune in to the sense of connection and notice how this feels in your body, particularly in your heart. If you have mixed feelings, just tune in to the sense of warmth, connectedness and love. Take a few moments to really enjoy these sensations.
- Think about the things this person likes. What are their favourite sweets? What other small gifts would they appreciate?
- Get these things and put them in the box, along with a small note expressing your gratitude for this person being in your life. You might like to write the note on a folded heart. You could even fold a number of hearts and simply fill the box with little messages of appreciation.
- Next time you see the person, give them the gift. Watch their face as they open it and read the note (or eat the sweets). You might like to help them with this last part — mindfully of course!
As a variation, you can make a series of boxes, each slightly smaller than the last (just use incrementally smaller squares of paper). Then you can decorate each and put them one inside each other to make nested boxes. Then when the person opens it, it will be like a pass-the-parcel (remember that from when you were a kid?)
You might also like to give a gift to someone who needs some cheering up. Here, along with the sweets, you might like to write down a number of things you like about them and give them a box of gratitude.
Encourage them to pay it forward so that they too can experience the benefits of generosity.
ABOUT: This is an edited extract from The Art of Mindful Origami by Dr. Richard Chambers available from www.exislepublishing.com.au.
The Art of Mindful Origami extends the concept of mindful, art-therapy colouring using 15 origami projects, ranging in difficulty from basic to complex, as tools to develop mindfulness. In recent years, interest in mindfulness has exploded and it is now a part of popular culture. Increasingly, creative pursuits such as colouring are being used as a way for people to focus and enter a mindful state. Each project starts with a brief description and background to the model. Subsequent pages give instructions for folding the particular model. For difficult exercises, the book details ways of staying focused and calm and using mindfulness to deal with frustration or distraction. This is an important part of mindfulness and leads to a range of benefits for wellbeing and performance. Once each model is folded, the book then outlines various related exercises that can help to further develop mindfulness. For example, after folding the paper boat, readers are encouraged to lie down and place the boat on their belly and watch it rock up and down on the “waves” as they breathe. This helps them develop mindful breathing, which is a powerful tool for relaxation and focus.
High-quality patterned origami paper and colouring sheets, which can easily be torn from the book, are included to make this the ultimate gift for anyone wanting a calmer, more stress-free life.