“What is a kusudama, anyway?”

That’s the first question people ask when they hear about my shop! Kusudamas are a traditional model of origami. They usually have five petals and are considered modular origami because they require more than one sheet of paper. I love them because they are relaxing to make and they are always beautiful.

My name is Laura Sanders, and I began making paper flowers in 2012. After years of working in front of computer screens, I found myself longing to create something that I could hold in my hands. 

When I became engaged to a wonderful man named Philippe, I knew that our wedding was the perfect opportunity to begin creating again. Using online tutorials, library books, and a lot of patience, I learned how to make kusudamas, roses, and other paper flowers. For months Philippe and I folded and glued paper wedding bouquets, church decorations, and centrepieces until we had everything we needed to give our wedding a truly personal touch. We received so many compliments and a lot of our guests took the centrepieces home as favours.

After Philippe and I were married in July 2013, I realized that I did not want to stop making these elegant bouquets, so I decided to open my Etsy shop, The Beaded Kusudama. Based in Montreal, Canada, I ship all over the world. The majority of my work is customized; I can create paper bouquets, jewellery, or accessories in any style or colour scheme you desire. I also appear at craft fairs regularly. Check my Contact page to find out where I'll be next.

These days, I am determined to keep my creativity as part of my life. We live in a world where nearly everything is done for us, usually by machines on a mass scale. As a result we have lost so many skills and so much of the creative spirit that fulfills us as human beings. But we are seeing a resurgence. I have been so happy to witness an explosion of the DIY ethos as people rediscover the joy of making things. 

As a blog, my website The Beaded Kusudama has a broader scope than crafting exclusively, though that is a huge part of it. I also want to share my commitment to a DIY lifestyle that prizes nourishment in different forms: gardening, cooking, and most recently, fermenting. I am always trying to acquire new skills that will help me to nourish my family and myself. I also write about my experiences as a minimalist runner, as running has taught me the true extent of what I am really capable of. 

I hope you will share in the journey. Happy reading!