Three Origami Projects to Make

Origami is a papercraft technique that has been in existence for many years, and little has changed since it’s inception. Today there are a million and one different projects that you can try your hand at, that can be made any size you like, all you need is a square sheet of paper!

If you’re just starting out it’s best to make your first few models with origami paper or a paper that is no more than 75gsm as this will allow you to get a feel of working with paper and  how it moves, and it can also be easily manipulated. As you grow in confidence try experimenting with different types of paper; vellum, patterned and handmade papers all work a treat!

You Will Need Craft Essentials
Beginner: How to Make an Origami Fox
  1. Take a square of paper, coloured side down, and valley fold diagonally in half corner to corner. Unfold.

2. Valley fold diagonally in half in the other direction, corner to corner.

3. Fold one of the side points up to meet the top-middle corner. Repeat with the other side point.

4. Mountain fold in half along the centre diagonal crease.

5. You should now have a right-angle triangle. One of the shorter sides has three open points at one end. With that end pointing upwards, valley fold only the top two flaps with a crease parallel to the edge.

6. Flatten the fold, but allow the top-most point to come down a little. Do not flatten the point, let it remain three-dimensional. This will be the fox’s head.

7. To complete the design, valley fold the remaining side point to form the tail.

Intermediate: How to Make an Origami Butterfly
  1. Take a square of paper, coloured side up, and valley fold it in half vertically side to side. Unfold.

2. Valley fold in half horizontally side to side. Unfold. Turn the paper over.

3. With the coloured side facing down, valley fold diagonally in half corner to corner. Unfold.

4. Fold diagonally in half the other way, corner to corner. Unfold.

5. Holding one side of the square, coloured side down, fold a neighbouring side along the diagonal line, but only up to the centre of the paper. Once flat, fold it back on itself using one of the non-diagonal creases. Repeat these steps with the other neighbouring side, then squash flat to form a triangle. This is known as the waterbomb base.

6. With the long side facing down, fold just the top flap of the right-hand corner down to meet the bottom point. Repeat with the top left flap.

7. Turn the model over, keeping the triangle pointing upwards. Valley fold all layers of the bottom point up, so they overhang the top a little.

8. Bring the left-hand flap down, allowing the outer edge to come in slightly. Squash it flat. Repeat this step with the right-hand flap.

9. Fold the top point down so the crease lines up with the top edge of the wings.

10. Take the point you just folded down and fold it up again to meet the top edge.

11. Mountain fold the whole butterfly in half along the centre crease.

12. To form the butterfly’s body shape, fold one wing down along a crease that goes a slightly diagonal line. Repeat with the other wing.

Advanced: How to Make an Origami Crane

1. Take a square sheet of your chosen origami paper, with the coloured side facing down, fold the unit in half horizontally, unfold, then fold in half vertically and unfold. 

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3. With the coloured side facing up, fold the sheet in half diagonally, unfold, then fold diagonally in the other direction.

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4. Collapse the unit along all four creases that have just been made, bringing all four points together and keeping the coloured side on the outside, creating a square shape. This is called a preliminary fold, and is the starting point for many origami creations. 

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5. With the open points facing down, fold the top layer of the two lower edges in to the centre vertical crease. 

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6. Fold the top point down along the top of the edges you have just created, then unfold all three folds. 

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7. Pull the uppermost point up and, creasing along the folds you just made, squash it to create a large diamond shape. 

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8. Turn the unit over and repeat these steps on the other side. IMG_7369_Edit

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9. Take the two lower side edges and fold them into the centre. 

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10. Repeat on the underside. 

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11. Partially open-up the left side and fold the bottom point up before squashing the side flat. This will be the crane’s tail. 

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12. Repeat this step on the right side, but before squashing flat fold the point down a short distance, to create the head. 

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13. Fold the top point down to the create a wing. Repeat on the other side to create the second wing. Gently pull the wings apart to inflate the body. 

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