The Origami Shades Story

Rick Pereira began creating Origami Shades when he was a student at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY. Exploring repeating geometric shapes made of origami, a question occurred to him: “What if I could make these into window shades?”

The first ones were little paper models exploring the possibilities of origami as functional art. One model was a mesmerizing field of pyramids that collapsed in unison. It was sewn together, and had a thread running through it to pull the pyramids into a folded stack of triangles. Another model was asymmetrical and looked like a bird when it was folded up. The possibilities were endless. A few models became life-sized window shades made from a roll of brown kraft paper.

More working models were made with better materials and improved functional details. Rails and finials were made out of wood, which is sustainable and well suited to home interiors. Five different fold patterns became full-size working shades. Some could open from the top as well as the bottom. Some were skylight shades, running horizontally on wires.

Thanks to the help and support of Rick’s partner Kathryn, as well as several supportive business advisers, Origami Shades are now patented and available for sale to a wider audience.