Origami is the traditional Japanese art of paper folding. The goal of this art is to create a representation of an object using geometric folds and crease patterns preferably without the use of gluing or cutting the paper, and using only one piece of paper.
Origami only uses a small number of different folds, but they can be combined in a variety of ways to make intricate designs. The most well known form is probably the Japanese paper crane. In general, these designs begin with a square sheet of paper whose sides may be different colors or prints. There is much speculation as to the origin of origami. It is generally believed that most of its modern developments occurred in Japan; however, there have also been independent paperfolding traditions in China, Germany, and Spain, among other places.
Origami had already become a significant aspect of Japanese ceremony by the Heian period of Japanese history. Samurai warriors would exchange gifts adorned with noshi, a sort of good luck token made of folded strips of paper. Origami butterflies were used during the celebration of Shinto weddings to represent the bride and groom.
Special origami paper, often also referred to as "kami" (Japanese for paper, among other things), is sold in prepackaged squares of various sizes ranging from 2.5 cm to 25 cm or more. It is commonly colored on one side and white on the other; however, dual colored and patterned versions exist and can be used effectively for color-changed models. Origami paper weighs slightly less than copy paper, making it suitable for a wider range of models.