Kaleidoscopic stencil patterns -- look at these vibrant colours! By Kanako Yaguchi.

Kanako Yaguchi’s Kirigami: Delightful Forms of Cut Paper

Flowers, leaves, and snowflakes are just some of the stenciled nature that make up the patterns of kirigami. But the intrigue lies in how exactly these delicate shapes come to life on paper. Especially when we remember the many piles of paper-scraps we produced as kids that didn’t come close to these beauties! Today PingMag talks to Kanako Yaguchi, who brings the art of classic cutting paper techniques to another level with her funky textile patterns and clothing and accessory designs.

Written by Ryoko
Translated by Kevin Mcgue

How did you first start designing with paper cuttings?

When I was an art school student, I was always thinking I would like to make something in order to hold a solo exhibition. Probably for that reason, I was consciously searching for something I could do. But there was nothing that I was especially skilled at. There were a lot of people around me who were doing painting and design so well, but I felt it was hard for me to express myself doing the same thing that other people were doing. Then one day, I found someone playing around with paper cutting designs. And I gave it a try myself!

Kanako Yaguchi’s solo exhibition: fashion and accessories with lovely paper cutting designs.

So that is how you discovered it?

Yes. I really just casually tried it out and found that it suited me somehow. That is all really. (Laughs)

From her exhibition at Seikatsu Kobo Gallery in Setagaya, Tokyo: trees, birds, and other works with a forest motif.

Your solo exhibitions mostly feature works from paper cutting designs. How about showing only paper cutting pieces?

That is something that I am working on right now. I think the usual order would be to create paper cutting designs first, and then later hold an exhibition of works based on those designs. However I am doing the opposite!

A small case in vibrant purple, with a nice cut paper design.

How did you start creating clothing and accessory patterns in the first place?

I just thought that it is nice to make things you can touch, and wear close to your body. And it is something nice for the people to have. But once at one of my exhibitions, one of the visitors said, “Oh, the designs where taken from paper cutting art!” When I heard that, I realised I had been wrong about my method. I rethought my approach, and now, along side the clothing and accessories, I create pieces with designs also.

A tank top with a nice print: Yaguchi dyes almost all of the material she uses herself! And on the right, a beautiful yukata with a printed flower motif.
In the making: paper cutting to be used for printed motifs.

Also, you published a book about paper cutting art last year?

I was happy to get the offer to work on a book and made some paper cutting art for close up shots that were used for it. In one chapter entitled Gentle Cut Paper: Analog Voyager, I introduce how to make paper cutting art. The rest of the book features paper cutting using a travel theme.

And do you like travelling yourself?

When I was young, my parents took me on trips to a lot of places, so I really love travelling now. When I was in college, a friend and I went to America twice and travelled around Europe twice. But we spent most of the time walking around places we didn’t know, talking to people we didn’t know, and looking for a place to stay for the night. (Laughs) I learned a lot for that kind of travelling.

Two of Yaguchi’s books, Japanese edition, which were published this June.

It is wonderful that you made books out of your work. How do you continue creating things?

I think I am probably more clumsy than other people, so maybe I have been able to continue because I simply don’t give up. Of course I sometimes encounter problems, or feel sad… but this becomes part of my motivation, and that might be why I have been able to continue.

Paper cutting grass makes a warm background for this sunset-orange illuminated elephant .

What have you gained by doing your art?

Making work on my own is a limited form of self-expression. However, if someone looks at my work and has an emotional response or tells me his or her thoughts on the piece, that gives me new energy! That is something very important for me, and helps me improve my skills.

A pastel printed tote layered with rainbow snowflakes and the seat of a garden stool covered with paper cutting designs .

What attracts you to paper cutting?

You can create all sorts of patterns. If you just casually give it a try, you will start to see flowers, snowflakes, and so on. It is interesting to see such things in a material that surrounds us every day. When making paper cutting art, there is no way to correct mistakes, and you only have one chance to cut with the scissors. That is challenging, and it is also interesting that no two designs are identical.

Patterns inspired from nature, beautiful!

Finally, what are your next plans?

I mentioned this earlier, but my cheap traveling when I was a student was a very valuable experience for me, and became an important milestone. So I would love to travel in the future, exhibiting my art in different places. When I get a feel of new places, I reflect that in my art.

Kanako Yaguchi, thank you for talking with us! We are sure that all your travel dreams will come true, and please continue your most talented work!

  • naomi

    i love these paper cutting design. i don’t think i’m passionate enough to do such details work! :P

  • jon

    I love paper cutting and this makes me want to do more!!

  • http://smfoodiecutie.blogspot.com/ Chibs

    Wow…beautiful designs! I have never tried paper cutting but Kanako description makes is so inspiring.

    Lovely article!

  • Anonymous

    This is great, look forward to looking into every area. Thanks for being there.

  • Anonymous

    Lovely. Made my day (which is saying something)

  • Pingback: Global Voices Online » Japan: Paper Art

  • Pingback: Room Service Blog » i love paper cuts

  • Pingback: Glasgow Craft Mafia » Blog Archive » Fun Friday Links

  • Pingback: Just Stuff I Find

  • Pingback: Kevin Mcgue - Tokyo-Based Journalist & Filmmaker » Kanako Yaguchi’s Kirigami: Delightful Forms of Cut Paper

  • Pingback: Muster falten und schneiden : papierstadt.de

  • Pingback: Kevin Mcgue | “Kanako Yaguchi’s Kirigami: Delightful Forms of Cut Paper” Translation

  • http://www.bfc.com.tr forex

    blog, your very good health effort :)

  • http://www.pornosikistr.com/ porno

    very good this page

  • http://bird-houses-for-sale.org bird houses for sale

    this is some great stuff, i’ll be sure to come back

  • http://www.ebrandwatches.com men watches online

    Your article very interesting, I have introduced a lot of friends look at this artdsgsdgicle, the content of the articles there will be a lot of attractive people to appreciate, I have to thank you such an article.

  • http://www.googlelv.net/watch_chanel_1.htm シャネル時計コピー

    googlelv.net模范店,シャネル,シャネル時計,シャネル時計j12,CHANEL 腕時計コピー,シャネル激安腕時計,心と信頼,低価格は,最速商店。

  • http://www.iwantmyownpodcast.com Podcast Business

    Awesome website. Keep up the good work.

  • http://www.iwantmyownpodcast.com podcast Jason Van Orden

    Extremely nice website. Excellent job!

  • http://www.thehometable.net what you feed your family

    Recipes,health tips and more

  • http://epicweightliftingroutines.com weightlifting routines

    You look good, and your site is a great fit for me. Thanks A million for your info and instructions.

  • http://www.tuscanywind.com energie rinnovabili

    Turbine Eoliche

  • internet marketing

    thank you for the revelant info.

  • calrissa

    omg! this looks so beautiful!

  • http://www.detektei-map.com Detektei

    Danke f�r die Information. Ich habe eine Detekei in meine n�he gefunden. Viel Erfolg weiterhin und Gr��e aus Seesen.

  • http://www.heyycanli.com goruntulu sohbet


  • http://www.heyycanli.com goruntulu sohbet

    süper site

  • http://janisproductions.net Wedding Video Philadelphia

    An officemate does cut paper and I think it’s just pretty!!!

  • http://janisdigitalmedia.com Video Production Philadelphia

    One wrong snip and you start all over! I just love that chair!

  • http://srahomeproducts.com/sunroom.html Sunrooms South Jersey

    Fleur and snowflakes. Lovely! I would love to see some other patterns she makes.

  • http://kandjfence.com Fence New Jersey 

    How does she come up with all those patterns? They say no two snowflakes are alike. I bet same is true for hers. Hehe.

  • http://skintreatmentsforacnescars.info facial treatments for acne

    Your blog posts are awsome. I like it. Please keep updating your posts.I think it is great for facial treatments for acne.

  • http://www.heyycanli.com goruntulu sohbet

    trsohbet’in sohbet sitesi tikla gir iceri sende sohbet et bayanlarla simdi burada linke zipla

  • http://myweb-traffic.com/ united healthcare of florida

    Good topic..keep the good content coming

  • http://www.netdesignrank.com SEO

    awesome designs, it’s colorful and the shapes are so lively :D

  • http://www.healthnaturalproductsdatabase.com/ Health Natural Products Database

    This read was attention-grabbing to read. I am interested within the topic so I was joyful to return across this article.

  • http://mightysolos.info Get 125.000 visitors Free with Mighty Solos

    Owner Mighty Solos

  • http://www.foodprocessorsreviews.co.uk Food processor reviews

    Those colours are so vivid and lovely. I love them!

  • http://mightysolos.info Get 125.000 visitors Free with Mighty Solos

    here you have 125.000 visitors free with Mighty Solos

  • http://affiliatemarketing01.com affiliate marketing,free affilite program,free gift for the hollyday,free gift on the internet,free affiliate marketing

    All the best.

  • http://maliniamudha2GMAIL.COM sweety

    i really got eagerness 2 start wit such a lovely work 4 my up coming projects…………

  • http://www.allfailure.com All Failure

    Great site Great site

  • http://www.wbrandwatches.com men watches online

    I like it very much. And happy new year! ded

  • http://www.happyseasons.gr χριστουγεννιατικα δεντρα

    χριστουγεννιατικα δεντρα, χριστουγεννιατικα στολιδια

  • http://www.genuinetobacco.com/pipes-pipe-tobacco.asp pipe tobacco

    Once I originally commented I clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now every time a remark is added I get 4 emails with the same comment. Is there any approach you possibly can take away me from that service? Thanks!

  • http://www.fashionlouboutinsale.com/ christian louboutin

    Very Nice! makes me remind the coloured performance of the early pink floyd!

  • http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=184834114934913 Black Friday Canon PowerShot

    Thank you for that very interesting.

  • http://www.fridayblackwii.com Black Friday Wii

    It good article. Black Friday Wii

  • http://www.fridayblackwii.com Black Friday Nintendo Wii

    Nice for me Black Friday Nintendo Wii

  • http://triplejonline.com Figurines

    Collecting figurines has become more popular lately and many people are turning to the internet to locate them.

  • http://forexwikipedia.blogspot.com/ forex wikipedia

    Free Indicateur,Free Expert Advisor,feedwikipedia,forex wikipedia.

  • http://www.dildokopen.net Dildo kopen


  • http://www.realelixir.com อาหารเสริม

    ช่วย เสริมให้ผิวขาว กระจ่างใสทั่วร่างกาย ควบคุมการทำงานของเม็ดสีผิวให้เป็นปกติ ลดการเกิดฝ้า กระ จุดด่างดำ ต่อต้านอนุมูลอิสระ ปกป้องผิวและร่างกายจากมลภาวะเป็นพิษ ลดสารพิษตกค้างภายในร่างกาย

  • http://www.baimintspa-academy.com School of thai massage

    school of thai massage and spa certificaes Association of thai treditional medicine Appoved by the Ministry of Health

  • http://www.classificados.katavendo.com.br Kata-Vendo – Bons ventos para seus neg�cios

    anunciar no katavendo agora ficou mais facil, os anuncios s�o 100% gratuitos e voc� conta com suporte on-line e atendimento por telefone. anuncio, anuncios, anuncie, anunciar, classificado, classificados, classificados gratis, anuncios classificados gratis, imovel, imoveis, autos, automoveis, automovel, veiculos, carros, motos, celulares, video-games, computadores, dominios, cameras digitais, livros, quadinhos, revistas, cds, cd, dvds, DVD, hd, informatica, eletro-eletronicos, eletronicos, audio, video, decoracao, joias, relogios, esportes, lazer, negocios, filmadoras, videos, selos, moedas, ferramentas, antiguidades, raridades, oportunidades, promocoes, empregos, curriculos, servicos, artigos esportivos, empresas, produtos, vestuario, revistas, Sao Paulo, sp, Rio de Janeiro, rj, parana, pr, classificados, katavendo, kata-vendo, catavendo, cata-vendo, an�ncios, gr�tis, gratuitos, gratuitamente, empregos, oportunidades, comprar, vender.

  • http://blackfridaycanonpixma.com/ Black Friday Canon Pixma

    Black Friday Canon Pixma Best Buy Online Printer For Black Friday Sale 2011

  • http://www.realelixir.com อาหารเสริมนาตาลีเดวิส

    จากประสบการณ์กว่า 20 ปี เกี่ยวกับธุรกิจยา และอาหารเสริม พร้อมความมุ่งมั่นที่จะพัฒนาอาหารเสริมของไทยให้ทัดเทียมกับระดับสากล เพื่อตอบสนองทุกความต้องการของทุกกลุ่มผู้บริโภค ทั้งเรื่องของคุณภาพ และราคา จนได้รับการยอมรับจากกลุ่มผู้บริโภคจากหลากหลายสาขาอาชีพ ไม่ว่าจะเป็น กลุ่มนักธุรกิจ พนักงานออฟฟิศ แม่บ้าน นักเรียน นักศึกษา ไปจนถึงกลุ่มศิลปิน ดารา นักแสดง

  • http://alegroalegro.pl Lg Swift Allegro

    I was suggested this blog by my cousin. I am not sure whether this post is written by him as no one else know such detailed about my difficulty. You are wonderful! Thanks!

  • http://sonynwzwalkman.info technology

    Check out our Cyber Monday deals on everything from cell phones with service to no-contract phones, unlocked phones, Bluetooth headsets, cases, chargers, and more

  • http://www.anunciogratis.katavendo.com.br/ An�ncios Gr�tis, An�ncios Classificados – Kata-Vendo

    Anuncie no Katavendo e usufrua DE TODOS OS BENEFICIOS OFERECIDOS, NO KATAVENDO voce encontra: anuncio, anuncios, anuncie, anunciar, classificado, classificados, classificados gratis, anuncios classificados gratis, imovel, imoveis, autos, automoveis, automovel, veiculos, carros, motos, celulares, video-games, computadores, dominios, cameras digitais, livros, quadinhos, revistas, cds, cd, dvds, DVD, hd, informatica, eletro-eletronicos, eletronicos, audio, video, decoracao, joias, relogios, esportes, lazer, negocios, filmadoras, videos, selos, moedas, ferramentas, antiguidades, raridades, oportunidades, promocoes, empregos, curriculos, servicos, artigos esportivos, empresas, produtos, vestuario, revistas, Sao Paulo, sp, Rio de Janeiro, rj, parana, pr, classificados, katavendo, kata-vendo, catavendo, cata-vendo, an�ncios, gr�tis, gratuitos, gratuitamente, empregos, oportunidades, comprar, vender.

  • http://www.panatweb.com Movies and TV Series

    wat a nice post

  • http://watchestimex.com Watches Timex

    Timex Watches On Sale

  • http://solusina.com/ toko jasa

    wow… is cool….

  • http://www.partaji.com Partaji.com – share the info …

    Partaji Admin

  • http://amritsartemples.in Abhinav Duggal

    Amritsar Temple Pictures,Golden Temple Amritsar Pictures,Harmandir Sahib Amritsar,Swarn Mandir,Darbar Sahib Amritsar, Durgiana Mandir Amritsar,Bada Hanuman Mandir Amritsar,Holy City Amritsar, City Amritsar Pictures, Famous Amritsar Places,Shivala Bagh Bhayian Mandir,Badra Kali Mata Mandir,Chintpurni Mata Mandir,Ram Talai Mandir,Ram Tirath,Model Town,Mata Lal Devi Mandir,Sheeda Sahib,Vaishno Devi Mata Bhawan Pictures,Radha Sawami Baba Ji Pictures,Veer Bhan Shivala,Gurdwara Chheharta Sahib,Sankat Mochan Hanuman Mandir,Gurdwara San Sahib,Banke Bihari Mandir,Gurdwara Goindwal Sahib,Baba Budha Sahib,Bohli Sahib, Itihasik Temples Pictures Download,Baba Bhoot Nath Maha Kaleshwar Mandir

  • http://www.thevisayas.com The Visayas

    Thank you so much for this content, Im so lucky and glad that I found this website, Please keep this website going and I will keep

  • http://www.smacktom.com earphone

    smacktom.com provides premium accessories for cell phones with free shipping

  • http://www.hallohi.net HalloHi Social Network

    HalloHi is Social Network service . You can write what ever you want you have your space on this site and you can do whatever you want share music , videos , write blogs , read blogs , ask question , answer question , play games , upload documents , do

  • http://www.desi-forums.com Desi Forums

    Nice website to watch music, movies and tv shows online.

  • http://www.argetic.com/ Online Information

    This is the only blog that can keep you updated with latest information in every sphere of life. Whatsoever it may be health, automobile, science and technology.

  • http://www.aiostream.com Enes Osmanovic

    thanx for your valuable post….bookmarked it…love to see this type of interesting posts again and again.

  • http://www.spymobile.biz Free Gps Tracking Mobile cell phones spy software download

    Free Gps Tracking spy mobile software download, Track online location of Any Android, Windows Mobile, iphone, blackberry or Symbian cell phone using Google Map tracker from your computer.

  • http://www.rollup-awnings.com roll up awnings

    Hey this is awesome blogs. Keep posted usefull information. Thank you

  • http://www.yorumblog.com Laptop Özellikleri

    Thank you. I’ll sharing the post at my twitter.

  • http://browse4cash.com/?ref=1572 Recreation and Business

    Yes I like your comments and i hope you also like my suggestion here. Please click to view.

  • http://vitaminsspringvalley.blogspot.com spring valley vitamins

    Spring Vitamins – Pumpkin Nutritional Benefits Good afternoon. Today, I learned all about Spring Vitamins – Pumpkin Nutritional Benefits. Which is very helpful for me so you. Pumpkin Nutritional Benefits Cucurbita maxima is the botanical name for pumpkins. Pumpkin nutritional benefits make this fall vegetable prominent to our diet. They grow in all shapes, sizes and colors. Pumpkins have earned a subcategory of their own when using them traditionally for Halloween and Thanksgiving. Carving the Halloween pumpkin can be great fun, make sure to save the seeds for planting in the spring. The Cucurbita house has many relatives, which consist of cucumber, squash and baby marrow. What I said.

  • http://www.temple-jewellery.com Costume Jewellery

    This piece of information is a gem for me, very helpful, really a great piece of writing, thanks for the effort made, really impressed.

  • http://www.decorcraftservices.co.uk Painting and Decorating

    DecorCraft Services has the qualified, licensed and bonded professionals with years of excellent reviews on their side to offer your next painting or decorating project. As proud members of the Painting and Decorating Association, we have the distinction of offering the best services for your home improvement desires, no matter the total size of the project. Our professionals are on hand today to offer a free, competitive quote for our services. Trust the DecorCraft Services name for your next project.

  • http://www.hitbeats.de http://schlesische-hochzeitsband.blogspot.com/2011/10/polnische-band-polnische-hochzeit_9545.html

    Deutsch polnische Band Hochzeit Hochzeiten Musiker Liveband Musikband Tanzband Partyband

  • http://whirlpoolwashers.org whirlpool washers

    Hi ….. I have information about Whirlpool washers, you should read them and get tips and tricks commersial business with Whirlpool washers.

  • http://www.polnische-band.motet.de Deutsch polnische Band Hochzeit Hochzeiten Musiker Liveband Musikband Tanzband Partyband

    Live Music MOTET – Deutsch Polnische Hochzeitsband (Band) Polnische Hochzeitsband

  • http://gunlukkiralikev.com.tr günlük kiralık ev

    Aylık kiralık daire fırsatlarımızı takip edin, beş yıldızlı otel konforunda, SPA, türk hamamı, açık ve kapalı havuz ayrıcalığına 97 TL ye sahip olun

  • http://www.goadvertisetomillions.com advertise to millions

    Wow, how come it took me almost 4 years to find your website, I have been looking for something like this online for the pass four years,

  • http://www.stopitnow.gr ηλεκτρονικο τσιγαρο

    stopitnow.gr Great Site

  • http://www.tswgolds.com/ Delisa Fabello

    Like THAT’s gonna happen!tsw Power Leveling<

  • http://elementymuzy.com.pl Adan Varas

    Unquestionably believe that which you stated. Your favorite reason appeared to be on the internet the simplest thing to be aware of. I say to you, I certainly get annoyed while people consider worries that they just do not know about. You managed to hit the nail upon the top and defined out the whole thing without having side effect , people could take a signal. Will probably be back to get more. Thanks

  • http://www.zinja.nl Zinja

    Het gaat om de specialiteit voor een vrouw en man. Sex is iets moois en speciaals. Dat straal Zinja uit. Zinja exclusieve sex speeltjes voor iedereen.
    Bekijk de site, binnenkort hebben ze actie’s tot 20% korting. ik zelf heb goeie ervaringen kan ik jullie vertellen!