A paperfolding paradise
The website of writer and paperfolding designer David Mitchell
page attempts to record what is known about the origin
and history of the paperfolding design known as
Abd-El-Krim. Please contact me if you know any of this
information is incorrect or if you have any other
information that should be added. Thank you.
As far as I know the first appearance of this design in the historical record, under the title 'The Paper Face', (but then also titled 'The Sultan') is in 'Paper Tricks' by Will Goldston, published in London in 1919, where it is made from a pleated tissue serviette. (My thanks to Michel Grand for this information.)
The design can also be found in an article about paperfolding entitled 'Tricks and Twists with Paper', written by Sam Brown, which appeared in the February 1928 issue of Popular Mechanics magazine. Here it is folded, somewhat less successfully, I feel, from a single strip of paper. (I learned about this article from Oschene.)
Incidentally, Michel Grand has pointed out to me that Abd-El-Krim was a real person. He is well worth looking up.