Nov 16, 2010

Crane Mobiles

I really like origami paper. Not that big into actually folding origami, but the papers I see at the art store are always so beautiful that I've been known to buy a pack or two without any specific plans. Not so for the wedding - I had plans. Big plans. Plans that still, actually, didn't have anything to do with folding origami. But with some excess papers floating around, I thought I'd make a couple paper cranes to hang out around the wedding. Then I got some feedback from some savvy lady friends (no, not THAT kind of lady friend! Geez...) that a "couple" wouldn't do. Fortunately, they were willing to help me crank out, like, a couple hundred cranes. I was still a little skeptical of the flock of cranes.. until I saw this wedding on Ruffled:

OH! Now I get it! Gorgeous right? But, I can also see why you need HUNDREDS (or go for a cool thousand if you want to make a wish) because they do kind of need to be in a swarm to have any visual effect.

Then mere DAYS later (again on the wonderfully DIY friendly Ruffled wedding blog), I see this wedding (on the left):

I love how the mason jars add some visual weight (and literal weight) to the mobile. Unfortunately, it seems like everyone and their mother uses mason jars in weddings these days (okay, I guess I was looking at A LOT of outdoor/vintage/diy weddings). That glass is also heavy and could complicate the structural integrity and I didn't want to have lit candles, but empty jars sound kind of... depressing. Then I happened to be poking through the Ikea web catalog and found these:

Perfecto! Oh, and you only want $4 for these adorable lanterns? Um, okay, I'll take a dozen!
So, we strung up the cranes with fishing wire onto some wooden dowels, with the lantern hanging from the center to keep it balanced. And that's the story of how we made these crane mobiles.

Photo credit: Ian KB

Now I just wish I had a backyard with willow trees to hang them from permanently. When I look back at photos from our ceremony, I love how the mobiles dreamily found their way into some frames:

Photo credit: Ian KB

BONUS: We also used some lanterns as center pieces, with a little crane tucked inside:

Photo credit: Julia C

Mobiles are kind of awesome in general - they essentially decorate THE AIR. Not a table, not a wall, just airspace. One tip though: keep those little birdies paper-clipped together from early in the construction process or you will have one big, tangled mobile mess on your hands when you try to set them up. I transported each mobile in it's own brown grocery bag (they're free for now!), which I think saved a ton of hassle.

Happy folding!


  1. That picture of you during the ceremony is so gorgeous!

  2. Those are an awesome idea! Makes me wish I had the patience to sit down and fold even one paper crane.

  3. @ R. Siren: It's amazing how much girlfriend labor cupcakes and champagne can buy you :) Seriously, I ran out of paper at the little party I through and had to get more!


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