Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Funnest Project Ever (or the blog I couldn't think of a good name for so I decided to exaggerate a little)

Last July, I went with my sweet friend Caryn and her husband Larry to the Allgood Cafe in Dallas to hear one of my favorite singers, Garrett Owen.  So much good came from this one night of dinner and music.  First of all, I got to hear Garrett play.  I love this guy.  He has the most unexpected voice, and his songs are incredibly melancholy.  I love it.  Second, Caryn and I had a conversation about Weight Watchers, and I was inspired to start back for another round of "Try to Lose the Last 15 Pounds".  Such an exhausting game, but I have almost won it.  One of my favorite parts of the evening was the restaurant's decor.  Hanging from the ceiling were strands of a thousand origami cranes.  I fell in love as soon as I saw them.  Tiny little paper birds made out of patterned paper... it was such a simple idea, but with so many of them, it was beautiful.  I asked our server about the birds, and she told me that one of the former employees had her wedding reception at the restaurant.  She and her fiance had folded a thousand of them to use for decoration, and they had looked so good, the restaurant decided to just keep them.  And they were indeed adorable.  I took pictures and posted them on Facebook, determined that I would like to incorporate them into a wedding, if ever I had another.

In Japan, cranes represent happiness and prosperity.  There is a practice of folding and giving a thousand cranes to a couple for good luck when they marry.  They can also be given as a gift for new babies or for teenage girls looking for love.  And while I think that the cranes are cute, I certainly will not be trusting in them for happiness and prosperity.  Even so, I am getting married on May 7 (more to come on how all of that came about), and there will be cranes, my friends.  Lots and lots of cutesy origami cranes.

For a hundred different reasons, my super cool fiance and I have decided to keep our wedding small.  We have chosen to include family only and just a few attendants on each side.  Many of my friends live all over the world and wouldn't be able to attend a big wedding anyway.  There are many people that I would love to have there for support and to witness the vows that we make, but it just isn't possible.  There are people that I have gotten to know through real life and blogs and Facebook that have become incredibly important to me.  So I have come up with a little way to include these people into my wedding without the travel expenses.

My friends, I would like for you to fold cranes.  I know, that sounds like I am manipulating things a little bit to get out of folding a thousand on my own, but please bear with me and let me explain.  First I would like for you to take the blank side of the origami paper and write a note, a prayer, a blessing, a quote, or a verse that you think would be encouraging.  Realistically, if it's a short note, you could wait until the crane is folded, and write it on a bottom section so that it's visible without being unfolded.  Sign your name, then fold them flat and put them in the mail to me.  I will string all of these little cranes and use them for decorations at our wedding and our reception.  We will be surrounded by thoughts and prayers and wishes of the people that we love and that love us back.  You can fold two or ten.  You can use your own origami paper (scrapbooking paper would even work), or I have paper set aside with envelopes and stamps and I will send some to you.  They can be the traditional 6 inch size or not.  Solid or patterned.  I am not particular.  There is just one catch... I need the cranes folded and returned to me by April 30th at the latest.  There are directions on the internet for folding cranes if you have never done it before.  I certainly haven't.  Also, I would like to write a follow-up blog once I receive the cranes, so take pictures while you are folding and email the pictures to me and I will include those in the blog.

This project is for everyone who wants to participate.  There are many of you out there that I have not even met face to face or that I haven't seen in a long time, and I would love for you to be involved as well.  If you have kids, they might want to help fold some.  It might be a fun little family project.  So here is what happens now.

  1. Decide that you do want to participate.  Of course you do, because you are a fun person.
  2. Decide whether or not you want to get your own paper or if you need some.
  3. If you need some, email me at (do not mock the aol email address) with your address and how many pieces of paper you need.
  4. I mail the paper.
  5. You write notes.
  6. You fold cranes.
  7. You send cranes.  (This part is kind of important)
  8. I string cranes.
  9. I have a super cute wedding with hundreds of meaningful decorations created by people that are important to me.     
Easy as that.  I am excited to see how this turns out.  And don't worry, the story on how I went from single to engaged in 5 weeks is coming.  Be on the edge of your seat.   


  1. Julie, if you (or any of your friends) want to aid Japan's disaster relief while taking part in this little project, check out this Etsy shop's items.

    I may buy some and mail them to you because I don't enjoy folding. : )

  2. I have a moral objection to cranes so please know that I will not be folding any cranes. However, I have no moral objections to pelicans. Therefore, I will be folding five (yes, I'm feeling quite generous) pelicans. There mouths will be large (such as a real pelican's mouth is) and can be filled with confetti. Unfortunately, pelicans are larger than cranes and thereby require more paper so I will NOT be including the confetti. You will need to purchase THAT yourself. Or you could always write a blog about confetti and con some of your friends into punching holes in paper FOR you. I recommend the latter. You're definitely one of my favorite sisters so I'm quite happy to help you with this. It's going to be a lovely wedding and I'm excited to be singing the song featured here

  3. I like what Becky said. :-) I would love to fold some cranes for you, but I'm afraid they might get put in a pile and forgotten about! But, I'm willing to give it a shot.

  4. what a cute idea! :) can't wait to hear your love story. so happy for you!

  5. Do we have a Plan B for those of us that are origami impaired? I gave it a try today and it just about drove me to cussin'. I guess I'll try again later. ;)



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