Origami Heaven

A paperfolding paradise

The website of writer and paperfolding designer David Mitchell

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The Basic Box / Basic Packet
 
This page attempts to record what is known about the origin and history of the origami design which, for want of a better name, I call the Basic Box / Basic Packet. 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.okk,

The Basic Box can be flattened to create the Basic Packet.

The Basic Box can be made from any oblong. To make a box or packet with a square base you need to begin with a 3x2 rectangle.

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In Japan

1751

This illustration of the Basic Packet is taken from 'Onna Shorei Shutaizen' by Tatsunobo Kitao which was published in 1751. Sourced from 'Oru Kikoro', the catalogue of an exhibition on paperfolding history held in Tatsuno City History and Culture Museum in 1999.

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1843

This print by Kunisada Utagawa showing a Basic Box can be dated to 1843. Sourced from 'Oru Kikoro', the catalogue of an exhibition on paperfolding history held in Tatsuno City History and Culture Museum in 1999.

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1844

This print, also by by Kunisada Utagawa, and also showing a Basic Box, can be dated to 1844. Sourced from 'Oru Kikoro', the catalogue of an exhibition on paperfolding history held in Tatsuno City History and Culture Museum in 1999. The rectangle in the bottom right corner is an overlap from another print.

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In Western Europe / USA

1873

As far as I know the Basic Box first appears, as 'Kasten' in 'Die Praxis Des Kindergartens' by Auguste Koehler, which was published by Herman Bohlau in Weimar in 1873.

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1907

The design also appears, as 'Bandeja para pildoras' (Pill Tray) in an article titled 'El trabajo manual escolar' by Vicente Casto Legua in issue 191 of the Spanish magazine 'La Escuela Moderna' for February 1907, which was published in Madrid by Los Sucesores de Hernando.

The text says, roughly translated, that 'It is a simple construction that can be used for what its name indicates, as well as for a box for mantecadas, rings etc'.

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