Take our user survey and make your voice heard.
Image: SoraNews24
lifestyle

The Japanese art of making trash containers from old papers

6 Comments
By Oona McGee, SoraNews24

A visit to a grandparent’s house in Japan can introduce you to a lot of eye-opening things, like the best Japanese sweets and snacks…and how to make epic amounts of umeboshi.

For our reporter Masanuki Sunakoma, a visit to his grandpa’s house always reminds him of the wonders of the leaflet trash can. This small receptacle is commonly seen in a lot of households, where they’re used to conveniently hold scraps, and Masanuki’s granddad always puts one out for him to use when he’s eating or peeling a mandarin at the table.

It’s a super convenient, environmentally friendly way of doing things, as the waste containers are made with old newspapers or leaflets that are commonly available at supermarkets or delivered via post, so it helps to recycle old waste materials while also reducing plastic bag consumption.

▼ Leaflets and newspapers given new life as trash receptacles.

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.24.21.png

Masanuki has since gotten into the practice of making his own leaflet trash cans, folding them in advance and making a big stack just like his grandfather does, so they can be easily pulled out and used as a tabletop waste container whenever necessary.

It’s a clever bit of Japanese knowledge that Masanuki would love to share with the rest of the world, so he’s created a quick tutorial so that you too can make your own leaflet trash cans.

Instructions

1. Fold the rectangular paper in half.

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.25.27.png
  1. Fold the folded paper in half again.

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.26.14.png

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.26.22.png
  1. Open one of the flaps from the last fold and make that part into a triangle, as shown below (follow the direction of the arrows).

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.27.50.png

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.27.58.png

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.28.07.png

4. Repeat the triangle fold on the other side.

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.29.46.png

5. Turn one half of the triangle over to the other side.

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.30.39.png

6. Repeat this on the reverse side.

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.31.27.png

7. Fold the outer edges into the middle.

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.32.29.png

8. Repeat on the reverse side.

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.42.26.png

9. Fold the upper protruding part towards you.

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.43.18.png

10. Repeat on the reverse side as well.

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.44.12.png

11. Now you’ll need to cut, or tear, both the protruding parts down the middle (the red line above indicates the part that needs to be cut).

▼ Tear it down the middle and only to the top of the folded part, as shown below.

Japanese-garbage-bin-trash-can-paper-how-to-no-plastic-origami-box-cool-eco-friendly-climate-change-environmental-origami-idea-17.gif

12. Tuck the corners of the cut portion into the little pockets on the side, as shown with the red arrow below.

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.46.16.png

▼ Then all you have to do is open your creation and ease it out into a square shape.

Japanese-garbage-bin-trash-can-paper-how-to-no-plastic-origami-box-cool-eco-friendly-climate-change-environmental-origami-idea-20.gif

If you made it this far — congratulations! You’ve now transformed a piece of trash into a container for trash, and mastered an origami technique that people in Japan have been using for generations.

Screen-Shot-2022-03-23-at-14.48.02.png

Once you’ve created a stack of containers ahead of time and have a stash tucked away at home, congratulations again – you’ve reached peak Japanese grandparent level.

It may seem a little tricky to make at first, but once you get the knack of all the folds, these handy containers are super simple and fun to make.

So next time you get one of those annoying flyers in the mail, why not use it to make a leaflet trash can before throwing it away? It’ll make a great conversation piece when guests come over, and it’ll look right at home with your collection of paper KitKat cranes.

Images © SoraNews24

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

-- Titan trash can to be placed near a Coca-Cola vending machine in Oita to help promote recycling

-- Japanese otaku now have special trash box just for merch of their former anime and idol crushes

-- Japanese company designs fashionable pouch to keep scraps of trash in

© SoraNews24

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.

6 Comments
Login to comment

Truly unique to Japan. - Candidate for the next UNESCO World Heritage designation ? -

2 ( +13 / -11 )

snowymountainhellToday  09:40 am JST

Truly unique to Japan. - Candidate for the next UNESCO World Heritage designation -

Stupendously great humor!

-1 ( +11 / -12 )

We have in Taiwan, too!

Japanese grandma always made ready when time to peel the mikan.

You are missed, おばあちゃん!

5 ( +8 / -3 )

This kind was taught in most Asian school back in 80s/90s.

Even the Scouts in HK school.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Hiro, make more paper tigers, with yours

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites