DrawAble: Making a Puzzle Purse with Eilis Hanson – Part 1

By Eilis Hanson

Artist and teacher Eilis Hanson loves nurturing young learners’ creativity through art activities. In Part 1 of this resource, Eilis demonstrates a method for creating an origami puzzle purse. Part 2 of this resource can be found here.

 

Notes for teachers

Introduction

Puzzle purses have been intriguing and delighting people around the world for hundreds of years. The Victorians used these origami riddles as secret friendship tokens and love notes (one even appeared in the film Emma), while in Japan, they have been used as little storage containers. Cheap and easy to make, puzzle purses offer all sorts of creative possibilities and these instructions will start you off on that journey. This activity will show you how to design and make a puzzle purse, which you can then decorate and personalise in Part 2.

You will need:

  • 1 square of thin card or cartridge paper (21cm x 21 cm)

  • Pencil

  • Ruler

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

Making your puzzle purse

These intriguing puzzle purses might look complicated but with step by step instructions, they are surprisingly simple to make. It’s all about folding in the right place and the right direction.

You will use just 1 type of origami fold to make the puzzle purse: the valley fold. This is the most basic folding – you simply take the edge of the paper and fold it to the opposite edge, then unfold.

Method

1. At the top of the card square write ‘inside’. This will help you later.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

2. Divide your square into 3 equal vertical sections and draw the lines lightly with a ruler.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

3. Valley-fold along the lines and then unfold them.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

4. Divide your square into 3 equal horizontal sections and draw the lines lightly with a ruler.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

5. Valley-fold along the lines and then unfold them.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

6. Valley-fold your square in half so that the corners meet and make a triangle. Do this in both directions. Then unfold.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson
Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson
Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

7. Turn the paper over and at the top of the square write ‘outside’.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

8. Using your ruler, draw in the 4 diagonal lines as shown below.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

9. Valley-fold along each of the lines. You can use the corners of the smaller squares to help you make the fold in the right place.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson
Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

10. Turn the card square over so you are looking at ‘inside’.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

11. Reinforce the 4 creases around the middle square. As you do this, the 4 sides of the paper will stand up from the central square.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

12. Pinch a pair of opposite corners and twist anti-clockwise along the fold lines to make a windmill.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson
Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

13. Re-crease the edges to flatten and smooth out the windmill.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

14. Turn the windmill over so that you cannot see any folds in the central square.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

15. Fold the windmill arms into the centre of the square, starting with the right arm.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

16. Going clockwise, continue to fold the arms inwards, letting them overlap.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

17. Tuck the last arm in under the first.

 

Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson
Puzzle purse making process by Eilis Hanson

 

Now your origami puzzle purse is ready! Go to Part 2 of this resource to see how to personalise it and add your own content to it.

 


This is a sample of a resource created by UK Charity AccessArt. We have over 1100 resources to help develop and inspire your creative thinking, practice and teaching.

AccessArt welcomes artists, educators, teachers and parents both in the UK and overseas.

We believe everyone has the right to be creative and by working together and sharing ideas we can enable everyone to reach their creative potential.

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