Origami Heart Earrings :: a tutorial

Valentines is just ONE WEEK away!!

How about making something special for yourself to wear on the big day? ^0^
… Or for anyone who’s still searching for a Valentines Day surprise gift!

Origami Heart Earrings

It’s quite easy to make, and I’ve included lots of photo to follow!
So here we go…

You’ll need:

  • A piece of Washi (Japanese Origami Paper) 15cm x 15cm
  • Beads (of your choice)
  • 2 x Fish-hook earring findings
  • 2 x Head Pins
  • PVA Glue
  • Water-based Polyurethane & brush to apply
  • Pliers
  • Pin & Needle
  • Scissors
  • Wire

Step 1

Washi

Have your washi ready on a cutting mat. I used a type of origami paper known as Yuzen Chiyogami – love the prints! I also chose pink/red because it’s Valentines! :D

Washi strips

Cut out two 1.5 cm strips.

Step 2

Start folding

Take one strip, fold one end of the washi to form a triangle.
And then keep wrapping the washi around the triangle.

The end of wrapping

When you reach the end of the washi strip, it should look something like the picture above. Fold the bottom corner of the part of washi strip still sticking out.

Step 3

Apply glue

Use a toothpick to apply a tiny bit of glue.

The end of wrapping

Tuck “end bit” in.

Step 4

Forming the heart shape

Use your finger, gently press from the top of the triangle. Squash the two sides a bit to form a rough heart shape.

Repeat step 2 to 4 for the other washi strip.

Step 5

Trim

Use a pair of sharp scissors, trim the two sides of both hearts to make them rounder.

Hearts done!

Step 6

Poke

First poke with a pin, and then a real thick needle to make a decent size pinhole.

Wire

Insert a piece of wire through both hearts – you don’t want to be holding the hearts when you apply the coating!!!

Step 7

Apply coating & let sit!

Use a small paint brush to apply a thin coat of polyurethane and let dry. Repeat 2-3 times. Patience is the key – let dry completely between applications.

A row of HEARTS!

I’ve made heaps more hearts while waiting for the coating to dry ^0^

Step 8

Your hearts are now sturdy and water-resistant!

Tread!

Remove hearts from wire and insert a head pin into each.
Thread a few beads in to make the earrings a bit more interesting.

Step 9

Trim the head pin if it’s too long, leave a section of exposed length of pin to form a loop using a pair of pliers.

Open the loop of a fish-hook finding and attach it to the head pin. Then close the loop again.

I don’t have a picture for this step, because I couldn’t take one><

Step 10

Your Origami Heart Earrings DONE!

No more steps!! You are DONE! ^3^

I really like how the Origami Heart Earrings turned out! Hope my instructions are easy enough to follow. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment!!

HaPpY VaLeNtInEs DaY!!

Thank you for reading!!

:: FAQ ::

Can I use coating/varnish other than polyurethane?
I can’t say 100% for sure, but it’s relatively easy to test if your coating/varnish will work. Basically, the coating is to protect the washi from water/moisture as well as give it strength and durability. So brush a layer (or 2) of coating onto a small piece of washi, let dry, and if the washi does not become brittle and won’t break when bend (be gentle!) then it is probably good for this purpose!! Just a note though, I used water-based polyurethane (easier to clean up^^) so I’m not sure how oil-based ones will perform! But doesn’t hurt to try!:D

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Trackbacks Comments
  • Mellon:

    Wow Jo!!!
    This is Ribon-chan.

    I like this idea so much!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Alex:

    Cute cute! <3
    I wonder if I could use other coating such as, uh, Mr. Super Clear coating I have for my resin doll (^^;

    • Jo:

      I’m not sure what “Mr. Super Clear coating” is >< hehe..

      My advice would be test out the coating with a piece of washi paper, if after the coating dried, the washi feels hardened, but remain slightly flexible (i.e not brittle – won’t break if you try to bend it gently) then it’s probably alright!!

  • Lovely idea!! I will try it! (but I wonder if I can use varnish instead polyurethane?) Thanks for this tutorial =D

    • Jo:

      I think varnish might work – but like Alex (comment above), if you would just test a piece of washi paper by coating it with your varnish. The paper should feel strong but shouldn’t be brittle – i.e won’t break if you try to bend it gently – then I think your varnish would be suitable as well! My polyurethane is water-based which makes cleaning up whole lot easier!! I’m not sure if oil-based will work, just maybe check that as well.

      And please try it!!! :) It really is quite easy!!

  • Yuzu:

    Totally gorgeous!!:)
    And looks easy enough for me! Thanks!

  • hi Jo! Finally I made the earrings!! If you want to see it, click here.http://rey-gato.blogspot.com/2010/02/valentines-earings.html

    Thank you!

  • Hi again Jo, I used common varnish for crafts ^^ . Works well but make the paper a little darker. Thanks for visit my blog =D

    • Jo:

      Really? I didn’t think the blue was dark though!! I really liked the washi you used! But you are right, those papers are sooooo pricey!!

  • Love it. Reminds me of the stars I used to make out of strips (I’m from Taiwan!)
    Have always wondered what people use other than “mod podge” for finishing. I Always wondered if PVA could be used as a finish – have you tried?

    • Jo:

      Yup yup.. I used to make those stars too!! hehe…

      I did wonder whether PVA would work as well… but I’m not sure if it actually dries clear or rather translucent… maybe i’ll give it a try next time (i mean try on normal paper.. not the expensive washi hahahaha~)

  • Very cool tutorial, thanks for posting.

  • dida:

    super cool…thank you for sharing.

  • Beta:

    Hello, I really like this job and I thought I’d share with my readers. I hope you do not mind! (If you leave me a comment and I will remove it). Thank you! Here is the link where it is entered: http://bimbumbeta.blogspot.com/2010/02/s-valentino-con-le-mani-in-pasta.html

    Regards, Beta

  • I love these! I will have to give them a try. I’ve made star origami earrings which seem similar in process.

  • kranthi:

    awesome…………….! kool nice idea

  • Ochibi:

    aaw a mi me encanta hacer manualidades *–* disfruto haciendo cosas, y ultimamente he estado a falta de ideas… eso es horrible u_u pero encontré tu pagina y ahora tendré ideas para practicar *OOOO* amo el origami y aaw me haré unos aros *O* Gracias por compartir tus ideas nOn

  • Ochibi:

    I don’t speak english … I speak spanish .___.

    • Luz:

      Luz:
      Hola,soy amante de las manualidades entre ellas bisutería y jamas había visto tan divinas y delicadas creaciones en origami,me quito el sombrero como se dice jajjajaj..trabajas divino.Felicitaciones mil…de corazón.

      ReplyMarch 26, 2011 at 10:49 pm

  • Jane:

    Your tutorial is an awesome inspiration! Many thanks for sharing. I would like to feature your designs at http://www.handmade-jewelry-club.com/

    Contact me here if you have a concern.

    Jane
    http://diylessons.org/

  • Nori:

    I was trying your earring idea out and it occurred to me why not enlarge, and use as ornaments on a Heart Tree? I also was Green Conscious and used junk mail. Take the full two page fold outs, use it the long way to cut strips. After folding simply PAINT with acrylic fast drying paint: red, pink, gold whatever color you want, sprinkle with a little glitter and voila! The paint will act as your stiffener. Insert a piece of thread instead of the earring wire, so you have a hanger. You can also link a bunch together on longer piece of thread for a garland.

  • Luz:

    Hola,soy amante de las manualidades entre ellas bisutería y jamas había visto tan divinas y delicadas creaciones en origami,me quito el sombrero como se dice jajjajaj..trabajas divino.Felicitaciones mil…de corazón.

    • Luz:

      Light:
      Hi, I love crafts including jewelry and had never been so divine and delicate origami creations, I take my hat as they say .. work jajjajaj divino.Felicitaciones mil … heart.

  • Luz:

    Luz:
    Hola,soy amante de las manualidades entre ellas bisutería y jamas había visto tan divinas y delicadas creaciones en origami,me quito el sombrero como se dice jajjajaj..trabajas divino.Felicitaciones mil…de corazón.

    Reply

  • That’s one cool pair of earrings. It’s unbelievable how simple to make this earrings, as you’ve shown here. Thanks a lot, I’m gonna try and do it myself and hopefully will get the same result as you have here.

  • Great tutorial! i love it, thanks for sharing

  • Pkae:

    I didn’t know these were paper till I scrolledd down; thought were clay! :-) beautiful and so much easier than clay would be. Now I want to try more origami in jewelry!

    Thanks so much for sharing!

  • Barbara Hammonds:

    These are adorable, Jo. Do you make them to sell by any chance? I am not much of a crafter, I’m afraid, and live in a rural area where most of these supplies would be unavailable. If you do sell them, would you be good enough to let me know how much they are? I am interested in purchasing 4 pairs :-)

  • Cean:

    Where can I buy a polyurethane coat for this craft? I tried searching on ebay but I don’t think I’m using the right term or name because I can’t find any :O

  • Lancy Chew:

    Can someone share the brands available for Water-based Polyurethane? Thanks

  • Jean:

    I found the paper you used on line, but what size paper? 4″, 6″, etc.?
    Love origami and am always looking for new designs, thanks for this one.

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