# How to make Origami Balls - Step-by-step Guide

Updated on January 18, 2009

## Origami - Fold Paper Balls

This web page will teach you how to craft several different types of balls out of folded paper using different origami techniques. I put the paper balls order of relative difficulty level.

Each level will also have links to related sites and recommended reading if you want to make things other than balls.

We are going to learn to make the following paper balls:

• Inflatable paper ball - waterbomb base EASY
• Spike ball - modular kusudama MODERATE
• Magic expanding ball/wheel - wizardry HARD

## Basic folds

Click thumbnail to view full-size

## Basic Origami Folds

Just so we're clear, these are some of the basic folds you'll want to be able to do before you can tackle even the easiest of the paper balls.

You need to start off with a square piece of paper. If all you have is 8.5 inch by 11 inch paper, you can fold it and cut it down. Take the top of the paper and fold it inward so that the top is flush against the left side of the page. This makes a square composed of two right triangles and an extra rectangular wedge at the bottom. Cut that wedge off and you've got a square: the basic building block in origami!

Valley Fold: When people talk about folds the direction matters. A valley fold forms a valley (the space between two mountains) by making two ends of your square join above the fold like in the diagram to the right.

Mountain Fold: The mountain fold is going to be the opposite orientation of a valley fold. It's an upside down valley fold. This doesn't matter with just one fold by itself, but it becomes very important later on because the orientation of the folds in relation to each other will completely determine the overall shape and resistance of the paper square.

Accordion Pleat: This series of creases is mountain valley mountain valley mountain valley mountain. It shows how the folds start to work together. See how different it would be if you made it valley valley valley as opposed to valley mountain valley?

Blintz Fold: This one requires a little more effort but it's important to a lot of designs. You fold the four corners inward to meet in the middle of a second concentric square. If you're not good with words or geometric descriptions, see the full-sized diagram above by clicking on the small thumbnail all the way to the bottom right underneath the image, and it should make a lot more sense.

## Inflatable Origami Waterbomb

This design uses just one square (almost all origami designs use square sheets of paper) and can be inflated at the end of assembly to create a sphereoid box. It's not going to be perfectly round and it's more accurately described as a bulging box than a ball, but it's still a lot of fun.

This ball will have a small opening in the end which makes it perfect to use as a paper lantern (3 to 5 inch squares can be made to fit snugly over a set of Christmas lights, or you can make a huge ball and put an entire small string of lights into it as long as the paper is thick enough to resist catching on fire).

You can also make these into crafty water balloons. You can even fill these paper bombs with substances that are hard to put into a balloon like shaving cream, toothpaste or egg goo (eww). Normally you wouldn't have the pressure it takes to inflate a balloon slightly while putting toothpaste into it. But you can fill this paper ball with anything gooey and icky and bombs away!

## Description of the waterbomb origami ball

The waterbomb base method for making an origami ball is just a little more complicated than the traditional origami bases (e.g. kite, frog, bird, fish) You'll probably be able to do it just by watching the video above and copying.

If you're into words over images though, this is a verbal description of how to fold the square of paper into a ball. You have to fold 2 perpendicular valley folds down the diagonals of your square. Then fold 2 perpendicular mountain folds across the middle of the square.

These creases can be compressed through the squash fold. You'll have an isosceles-right triangle (a triangle with a 90 degree angle and three sides of different lengths). with four isosceles-right triangular flaps.

## Modular Origami

This kind of ball takes more patience because it is constructed from MANY folded squares. Each square is folded into a similar shape that fits in with the other squares to form a geodesic sphere or ball.

Some people use glue. Even though that's kind of cheating, a lot of people just care what the finished product looks like so you can make your own decision. The modular kusudama without glue make each piece to have pockets and tabs. That way the tabs fit into the pockets of adjacent pieces so everything can be very snug and tightly fit.

## Magic paper ball

These are designs that simply exceed my capacity as a paperfolder or or even understanding of the laws of physics. I've included some video links but I have never been able to make these successful. Good luck. You'll need it unless you're some kind of wizard or paper god.

0

2

10

16

2

## Popular

77

16

• ### 40 Creative Tissue Paper Craft Ideas

2

0 of 8192 characters used
• Aj

7 years ago

Thanks!

• hey

7 years ago

cool one really hard

• nicole

8 years ago

how do you make the magic expanding ball/wheel?

• michael groves

8 years ago

i like it i made it on the first try

• lili

8 years ago

its so hard to make a magic ball i have tried a billion times already

• smona

8 years ago

i don't like it don't give it you too much information i don't like it

• jacob

8 years ago

how do you make the magic ball

• makayla

8 years ago

origami is my Favorite thing

• Robin

8 years ago

Thank you for the wonderful information. I use fabric to make origami ornaments and was looking for a new challenge. Many thanks!

• alivia

9 years ago

haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa very funny

• Emma

9 years ago from Houston TX

Useful article.I love your humor.Its really a creative hub that widen my knowledge.Very big challenge to me and i love challenges.

• awsomeperson7643

9 years ago

OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :D

sooooo cool :) but the magic ball is soooooo freaking hard!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! >:(

i cant collapse the waterbomb bases :(

but still awsomely cool!!!!! this is sick!!!!!!!!!! peace out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :P :D :)

• Stranger

9 years ago

*Kusudama

spelling correction

• Stranger

9 years ago

Kudusama is pretty easy, but annoying because you have to make a ton of those little paper things, and connect them together later. The magic ball is so freaking hard! I can't even make it. I'm having trouble collapsing the little water-bomb bases.

• David

9 years ago

Great page! Would love to see something on origami roses!

http://www.love-of-roses.com/origami-rose.html

• emmettpeck

9 years ago

i love using it its great thanks!!!!!!!!!

• Taligher

9 years ago

what istructions do you look at to do the Kusudama ball?

• Jed

9 years ago

Didn't like it....:(

• Gypsy Willow

9 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

Well done for bringing this art to our attention. I remember the water bomb and the bird from my childhood, now I'll try some more. Thank you for a great hub

• Lily!

9 years ago

amazing how people create these things. I'm making things for a pond scene and it's taking me forever!! I wonder how long it would take me to make these........

• Susan Hazelton

10 years ago from Sunny Florida

I love the looks of the Kusudama ball. I wonder if you could make smaller balls ande use them as Christmas ornaments. Rated up, useful and bookmarked. Thanks for sharing.

• Christopaz >:D

10 years ago

I'm making origami magic ball in school.. when i was on the waterbomb parts... someone crisped it... >:O so angry.. well gonna do it now hahahahaha

• xorigami_loverx

10 years ago

greatr instrution but i like it on the video. i don't really like to read it.>=) but still love the instrutions. THX!!! HAPPY TIMES WITH ORIGAMI!!! =)

• sdof

10 years ago

great!!! =)

• jane

10 years ago

nice thing

• pop

10 years ago

i now another site origamifun

• torki

10 years ago

this is great it taught me how to make an origami ball and i thought it was very creative

• donovan

10 years ago

This is ecellent!!!!!

• Miki

10 years ago

This is a great site. I couldn't remember how to make the water bomb, and your instructions and video were perfect! I plan to learn the other things too. Thanks.

• donovan

10 years ago

This is cool !!!

• loveable

10 years ago

I love your website and your awsome origami designs! also the magic ball is great i play with it all day. its so addicting up and down, up and down, up and down. i love it! also the inflatable ball it great. thxz Hub!

• larry nowles

10 years ago

whoa awesome but what the heck its hard to do dudi hard

• armstrong

10 years ago

LEARNT TO MAKE A PAPER BOX , THIS IS JUST A BEGINNING.

• Manyfaces:>:D:P

10 years ago

this video suckedddddddddddddddddddddddd,but i lovvvvvvvve origami!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

• bob

10 years ago

that is stooped\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\

• =)

10 years ago

This video sucks!

• shana76

10 years ago

umm........

• cobra00

10 years ago

• sarina

10 years ago

that's so cool i love it and its easy well for me

• danial hakeem

10 years ago

how to make it?????? :3

• papecraftcentral

10 years ago

Nice, I made one and posted in my blog http://www.papercraftcentral.net thank you so much

• says: says:

10 years ago

cool. :D

• none

10 years ago

i like pie O_o

• sarah

10 years ago

this is so cute! and i love it x]

• ma

10 years ago

help icant do it and looks awesome not on video

• Origamiluver

10 years ago

The crumple fold on the magic ball is sooo hard and the instructions are in Japanies!!! >=(

10 years ago

really informative hub for an interesting craft project

• aakarsh

10 years ago

That was great

• LazarDRod

10 years ago

Origami is awesome. I was addicted to it as a kid, always folding shapes and whatnot. You're going to get me back into it!

• juliapecce

10 years ago

this sucked really bad like i will waste ppaper

• besse

11 years ago

I cant't follow along the kusudama origami one. the hands

are blocking so i can't really see what's going on.

• luthfia

11 years ago

where did you learned about it???!!!

it's awesome!!

• tiny

11 years ago

I enjoyed the to i am looking forward to trying to my some more origami balls,birds,cats,dogs,flowers and more i really enjoy origami

• ngoc

11 years ago

I am very like origami ball

• sewin220

11 years ago

i love origami. i can make a fake bubble gum pack.

• mari

11 years ago

i want to know how to make origami not to read about it

• tinkerer

11 years ago from Portland Oregon

This hub is cool because there are links to all the other how-tos. Thanks for putting together all this information.

11 years ago

LOVE the origami magic balls! I'll be back to watch more of the videos!

• laringo

11 years ago from From Berkeley, California.

These are very pretty. I am going to bookmark this and try making the Kudusama with my granddaughter.

• 11 years ago

Your video "Assembling the Paper Spike Ball Without glue" isn't very good. I watched it eight times and I still can't follow along. The screen phasing to the next step while the hands are still folding is disorienting, it blurs what they were doing at the end of one step and what they're doing at the beginning of the next step. I can't even tell what you're doing at 0:46, even following along with my own piece of paper it doesn't look like that. You should have used paper with color on one side for this, it would have made it easier to see as the white just all fades together and it's impossible to see what and where you've folded.

• gigi

11 years ago

• Anna

11 years ago

When I tried it, it didn't help me.

• moonlake

11 years ago from America

I loved this my granddaughter is crazy about origami. I'll have to show her this.

• Dottie1

11 years ago from MA, USA

Very informative hub. I learned origami from a Japanese friend that I hung out with in the 3rd grade and have been paper folding ever since. My latest book I bought was "Origami with Dollar Bills".

• Debby Bruck

11 years ago

Excellent page. Loved it. I'm now a fan member.

• joonjohn

11 years ago

ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

• June Campbell

11 years ago from North Vancouver

That modular ball is STUNNING! I could never make anything so intricate, but I admire those who can. Your hub is beautifully done, also. You have put so much care and detail into it. I'm giving it a Stumble!

• aniket

12 years ago

Fantastic work

• profiler

12 years ago from Currently in this universe

Great hub!

I'm also an Origami Lover! In fact I recently did a hub on how to impress girls by making origamis!

• yoursolutions

12 years ago from Mc Allen TX

Eh your are a very focus hobbiest i want make a proposal i dare you if you can build a figher plane with origami in just 20 minutes all the video intructions are here just go to http://origamistepsblog.findfastr.com

• Starrborn

12 years ago

I wonder if I have the patence,Its cool tho...

• mae_rein

12 years ago

.....it's too fast that i can't almost understand the other steps..... hands are blocking.....

• eswar

12 years ago from India

That's really nice made me kid, love to see other shapes also.

• OLivia

12 years ago

Totally COOL!!!

I love this

• iloveshawnndjesse

12 years ago from nj

jacinda

• Karen Ellis

12 years ago from Central Oregon

I love origami. It's on my 1000 things to learn before I die list.

• Sameer

12 years ago

The magic ball was really cool! I really liked it and that's the truth!

• Whitney

12 years ago from Georgia

I remember making the origami balls in your very first picture. I have 2 in my room from middle school. I couldn't ever figur out how to put hte pieces together to make the ball, but a friend of mine gave these to me. I still have the pieces I made, too, in the disk shape that is also pictured.

• monitor

12 years ago from The world.

Great pictures and ideas on how to make origami, mroconnell! Some of them look really difficult but I feel challenged to give them a try. Thanks for the info!

Mon.

• caspar

12 years ago from UK

These are beautiful. I enjoy origami but my results are usually a bit more squashed and crumpled than these!

• jzorro

12 years ago from Portugal

I love origami... Yestarday I bought a book and I'm ahving a lot of fun with my kid building animals, airplanes and stuff... I loved your hub!

• jzorro

12 years ago from Portugal

:)

• Bob Ewing

12 years ago from New Brunswick

excellent hub, I have a book on origami but have not yet done anything, this hub may be the push I need, thanks.

• Sherri

12 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

The first instruction, about how to make a square out of 8 1/2 x 11 paper, is just awesome. Sure beats measuring out inches and drawing lines. Such a simple process, and I never saw it before. Wonderful hub.

• quiet tracer

12 years ago from South-Asia

What a HUb! Great ;)

• Chelle

12 years ago

Those are so pretty and what a great tutorial! I am not very good at folding paper but my hubby loves this kind of stuff...I will have to share with him!

• Om Paramapoonya

12 years ago

This is so cool! I think I'm gonna make one tonight :-)

• Merle Ann Johnson

12 years ago from NW in the land of the Free

This was great and well done...I have a few books and lot's of paper...But am not very good at following the directions.  It is just too frustrating..You make it seem easy...for you..not me G-Ma :o) hugs

• donnaleemason

12 years ago from North Dakota, USA

Great job. I remember the water balloon ones from childhood. Now I can show my kids. Thanks.

• Constant Walker

12 years ago from Springfield, Oregon

This is great hub. Waitresses love it when I leave them an origami rose, with tip, of course. The videos are an excellent addition: So much easier to learn by watching, ay?

• solarshingles

12 years ago from london

Mroconnell, this hub is so nicely made and very useful. I have always liked origami, yet I haven't been very good at it. It takes time and loads of efforts and practical work to learn it a bit more and the final results are quite artistic. Thank you!

working