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DLTK's Crafts for Kids
Basic Origami Instructions

Origami is the art of folding a piece of paper (typically a square) into something recognizable without using glue, tape or scissors.  Check here for all the origami projects on the site!  NOTE:  origami paper typically comes with each side a different color -- this is perfect for this project!!  You can find double sided origami paper at your local craft store or Amazon.com -- it is inexpensive.

Make sure, when folding, to be as exact as possible and to make nice crisp folds by running your finger along them, pressing them flat.

Before starting an origami project, read through these basic instructions for following an origami diagram.  It will help you understand what all the scribbles and symbols mean!  These symbols are "commonly recognized" and should be the same in pretty much any book or diagram you bump into.
 

Origami Lines:

Symbol Type of Fold Image Description  
Dotted Line Valley Fold basic origami instructions A dotted line means to fold the paper so it looks like the fold is a valley between two hills. basic origami instructions
Dots and Dashes Mountain Fold basic origami instructions The opposite of a valley fold.  The dots and dashed line means to fold the paper so it looks like a mountain. basic origami instructions
Solid Line Crease basic origami instructions A solid line represents the crease you can see from a fold that has been made. basic origami instructions

 

Origami Arrows:

Symbol Image Description  
Single Line Arrow basic origami instructions Fold in the direction of the arrow. basic origami instructions
Double Line Arrow basic origami instructions

or

basic origami instructions

Fold, crease and then unfold. basic origami instructions
Looped Arrow basic origami instructions

Flip your paper over.

basic origami instructions

 

Make a rectangular piece of paper into a square:

Mountain fold the top corner of paper over. basic origami instructions
Cut off the small rectangle below the triangle you just formed. basic origami instructions
Unfold and now you have a square (with a crease). basic origami instructions

 

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