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How to Make an Origami Kusudama

Learn how to make an origami kusudama with this origami video from Howcast.


This is a video for a kusudama. Now a kusudama refers to any kind of origami model that has a bunch of different sheets of paper that are the same. That you've have a couple of different units and you've put it together to make something a little bit cooler. So for example, this has a number of different units that are exactly the same in different colors, and they get weaved together to create something a little bit bigger. Sometimes that's also referred in origami as a modular.

For that kusudama ball, we're going to start with one sheet of paper and we're going to make a diagonal fold. So with the white side up, we're going to fold the diagonal fold, so make sure that's nice and lined up, so that it's not to the side at all, but very precise. Go ahead and make that nice diagonal fold. Open it back up and then the other diagonal fold as well. When you open it up and look at it, you'll have a nice cross right in the middle of the paper.

What we're going to do next is we're going to do two blintz folds. So we're going to take two corners and fold them into the exact middle of the paper, and these two corners that we're going to do are on opposite edges, opposite sides. So these two right here are going to come up and meet each other right in the middle just like that. Next we will flip the paper over and we're going to do a covered fold.

So we're going to take these two edges, right here at the top, and fold them into the middle line of the paper. When you do this make sure that you keep it nice and flat on the table, because there's that extra panel in the back that we want to keep locked down there. So go ahead and take this edge at the bottom, fold it up to the middle line, and then once you have there's this extra panel right here, go ahead and pick that up and tuck it underneath.

So that it's no longer locked behind the paper, but it's nice and free just like that. Do that on the bottom, also on the top just like this, nice and lined up, and then once again,you see that little extra tab, go ahead and pick it up and tuck that underneath just like that. Now next we've got the two corners of the paper, we're going to fold those into the edges of the color. So this is a nice square, go ahead and cut that square in half and hide all the color right there, so it will just be a white area just like this.

Now next is a very important step, whenever you're making a modular or kusudama, because you want to make sure that all of the units are exactly the same. So what you're going to do is you're going to decide a spot you want to fold up. I'm going to do the top left and the bottom right corner. So I'm going to take this corner right here and I'm going to fold it up, and make sure that you're consistent all the way throughout, making all of the different units.

Because if I made one with the bottom corner folded up like this, but I made another one with the opposite corner they wouldn't intersect, they wouldn't lock up the way you want them to. So go ahead and pick a side. I'm going to take the top left and the bottom right and fold those down, and then open them back up, and then we're going to weave them now under the panel. So go ahead and pick this panel up.

You see, I'm going to take this edge right here, this triangle and I'm going to fold it underneath just like that. It sort of weaves underneath that panel on this side. You could also think about it, If you rotate it around you're just going to do the exact same thing on the other one just like that. So now we have them both weaved underneath just like that. Next flip the paper over and from this parallelogram right here, what we're going to take the bottom corner and we're going to fold it up to that edge.

When that happens it should line up nicely with a couple of spots. You can look at the other side of the paper it's just right where that triangle lines up, that's what's going to get folded behind. And then take the top point and fold it down, again, it should line up. It should butt up against each other on the other edge like this. And then now I will fold it in half backwards. I'm just going to bend these two back this way, and this is your unit for this module. Once I open this up, this is the entire unit that we're going to use.

And what you need are several of these. It depends how big of a ball you want to make. For the example of this one that I was using right here, these are a little bit smaller units than this. This ball will end up being probably about this big, but you could also make one that could be a little tighter, a little bit smaller or even a cube if you wanted to. So make a couple more of these units. I've have a few handy right here.

I'm going to show you how they all intersect. So the way this works with modular's, you see how all three of these units are exactly the same. The way a modular works is there's always a pocket and a tab. Now the tab right here is going to be this white point right here. That's the tab and the pocket is going to be this triangle right here. You see how, if I open it just a little bit, you see how there's a little tab. That's where the tabs are going to fit into that pocket, right there on each of these.

So take another unit and I'm going to angle it, so the two of them are sort of perpendicular, where they would intersect like this, and you see how this tab right here will slide nicely right into that pocket just like that. And then from there we're going to take the next one, and this is going to wrap around, to make a pyramid or a triangle. You see how that's the pocket right there. I'm going to take this tab, slide it in and you'll see how that'll make a full pyramid.

Now this one right over here, the problem with that is, that one was underneath, so go ahead and bring that up to the top, and you see how the three of them now will weave into each other to create a pretty tight, interlocking shape just like this. And from here you're just going to keep adding units and working your way around. You'll see how there's another pocket right there, right there, right there and you just keep adding tabs all the way around, until you come up with the finished modular and it'll look something like this.

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