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These Japanese Vending Machines Mark Cultural Celebrations

Neither vending machines nor the ancient art of origami are new to Japan, but it is now possible to easily get artfully folded pieces of paper from Japanese vending machines.

Vending machines for food and beverages can be easily found across the country, but this new use of the machines specifically acknowledges cultural celebrations such as Girls’ Day, Boys’ Day and Children’s Day.

From the machine, one may pay for origami designs that change seasonally, such as interactive pieces like lips that open and close, frogs that jump and spinning paper tops. Each of these delicate pieces of paper art is dispensed in a protective plastic sheath. In some cases, the origami sculptures also come with small coin pouches, which are used for giving money to children on special celebrations.