Art Question

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Paper butterflies are not only dainty and chic, they’re also fun to make. Try your hand at origami to create one or, if you’re more of a crafting beginner, fold a simpler version with pretty pleats. When you’re finished, use your butterflies as decor or give them to friends and family as gifts.

1.Fold the paper in half, then open it and fold it in half the other way. Make sure to crease both of the folds. Line up the edges when you’re folding to ensure the crease is directly in the center.[1]

  • If your paper is the same color or pattern on both sides, it doesn’t matter which side you start on. However, if one side is white, or the “backside,” begin with that side facing up.
  • 2.Fold the paper in half diagonally, open it, and fold on the other diagonal. Bring 2 opposite corners together to create the folds. Press down firmly to create defined creases. Repeat on both diagonals. Open the paper to lie flat after you fold it.[2]
    • Your 4 folds should intersect in the exact center of the paper.
    • 3.Bring the right and left creases together, creating a triangle. With the paper laying flat in front of you, press the right horizontal crease to the left one. As you do this, the paper should collapse onto itself in a triangle shape along the diagonal creases you made.[3]
      • Press down on the triangle to crease the paper once it’s collapsed.
      • If the paper isn’t folding properly, go back over your original creases again. If they aren’t defined enough, the paper will have trouble falling into the shape.
      • 4.Fold the 2 top corners into the center. When you created the triangle shape, it made 2 layers. Grab the corners on the top layer and line up their edges with the crease in the middle of the triangle.[4]
        • Try to align the corners with the crease perfectly so they aren’t overlapping or so there isn’t a large gap between the edges in the center.
        • 5.Flip the triangle over and fold the bottom up, leaving a small tip showing. You aren’t folding it completely half. Instead you’re folding it about 1/3 up from the base of the triangle. Hold the fold in place gently with your hand.[5]
          • Don’t crease the fold.
      • 6.Bend the top layer of the tip over the base. There are 2 layers at the tip of the triangle. Peel the top 1 forward, folding it over the wide triangle bottom you’re currently holding in place. The tip will be the head of the butterfly.[6]
        • Crease the fold that you make with the tip. This will help secure the body of the butterfly in place and prevent it from unraveling.
    • 7.Pull down the pieces from the bottom layer to create the lower wings. With the top layer folded over, bring the bottom layer of the tip in the opposite direction. The points of the 2 triangular pieces should be facing down, away from the folded head.[7]
      • It may help to hold the folded tip with your thumb while you pull the other pieces down so that the butterfly doesn’t come apart.
      • Re-crease the folded tip after you arrange the bottom pieces if necessary.
      • Trim the edges of the wings if you want a smaller butterfly
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