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How to make simple kirigami craft for kids?

Updated on July 22, 2013
Cage made of paper - a simple pop up or kirigami technique
Cage made of paper - a simple pop up or kirigami technique

What is kirigami?


Kirigami is a Japanese craft of paper cutting. In Japanese kiru means cut and gami means paper. So the word Kirigami has a clear meaning and that is paper cutting. It is a type of paper craft where paper is folded and flattened and cut to create snowflakes, orchids, greeting cards and many more paper craft decorative pieces. Here a single piece of paper is cut to create a design and nothing external is used or glued on the design so created. Many elaborate 3d architectures and pop up greeting cards are also created with the same technique known as kirigami as long as a single paper is cut to create those designs and pop ups.

Symmetry and folds in kirigami -

Designs are mostly symmetrical in kirigami like,

A single fold will give 2 side symmetry, 2 fold will give 4 face symmetry,3 fold will give 6. 4 will give 8 and so on. Paper can be folded as many as 12 times but to achieve this paper must be very thin to make it easier to cut. Paper snowflakes are very famous but many people don't know that the art is known as kirigami. From very simple designs to extremely intricate and elaborate designs can be created with a paper and scissor.

Origami and kirigami difference -

Origami and kirigami differences -There is a major difference between origami and kirigami. Many of us are very familiar with the word origami. And we know that in origami we only fold the paper to make things and never cut it but in kirigami paper is folded and cut.

Chain of kids using paper
Chain of kids using paper | Source
Step 1
Step 1
Step 2
Step 2
Step 3
Step 3
Step 4
Step 4

How to make this simple kirigami craft -

Materials required -

Material required here is just a piece of paper A4 size is okay, pencil and scissor .

How to make -

  • Keep the paper flat on table and fold it into 5 equal parts, folds has to be zig zag as seen in the image.
  • Now draw half girl and half boy on right and left of the paper, make sure that there hands meet the same place, here it is the center.
  • Now cut all the pencil lines using scissor and open the folds carefully. You will see a chain of kids seems like they are celebrating by holding hands.

So you can see that just in three easy steps our work is done, you can color this and colored paper can also be used. Try making some more designs.

Another very easy craft idea - Tiger's cage

You can call this pop up but this is something that stands out and created by cut and fold technique of kirigami. Here we are making a tiger's cage using paper. Very easy to make and great fun for kids.

  • Take any color A4 size pastels sheet,
  • Fold this into half,
  • Using ruler draw equal length and width lines starting from the fold line approximately 4 inches length.
  • Now using scissor cut these lines,
  • Now do the inward push of all these folds in manner of one inward push and leave the next and again push the third and so on.
  • Press the card and open it, you will a pop up that looks like a cage, try to make a cut out of a tiger and attach it inside the cage. I have used a toy tiger inside just for fun. Your beautiful cage is ready.

So try to make this one in different sizes and for different animals. Fun activity for children and very easy to do craft idea. See the images for reference.

Paper snowflake - a very randomly created design
Paper snowflake - a very randomly created design | Source
Paper 2 fold
Paper 2 fold
Paper 3 fold with design drawn
Paper 3 fold with design drawn
Design cut
Design cut
Open the first fold
Open the first fold
Open second fold
Open second fold

How to make an easy paper snowflake -

Snowflakes also comes under the category of kirigami. Here also the paper is folded and cut. For this one as you can see in the image i have used a printing paper but any thin paper will be the best for making snowflakes.

  • Fold the paper 3 times as seen in the image,
  • Draw a random design, design should be such that the folding ends remains intact. Try experimenting different designs on a newspapers first.
  • Using a scissor cut your design and open the folds carefully. You will see that the snowflake is ready.

Sometimes it happens that we don't realize while drawing and after cutting we see that the folding ends are cut badly. Starting with 4 - 8 petals flower with small cuts inside will help. The one that i have made as seen in the image is too simple but is looking good. I pasted this on a greeting card and added a border and my card was ready in 10 minutes.


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    • Ceres Schwarz profile image

      Ceres Schwarz 

      7 years ago

      Interesting hub on kirigami. The instructions on how to make the kirigami crafts along with the images really help to show readers exactly what to do. This is helpful for those that are interested in kirigami.


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