Paper Octahedron Origami Tutorial
An octahedron is made up of 8 equilateral triangles meeting at a top and bottom vertex. It looks like two pyramids joined together or a simple diamond. Isn’t it cute?
The octahedron is folded from a single sheet of square origami paper with no creases on the faces.
Here I am using 7 x 7 centimeter (2.75 x 2.75 inch) colored paper. The brand is very Japanese and the only English on the package says “Art Color” and “High-class”. Any square origami paper will work, 3 x 3 inch is usually easy to find if you want small shapes and 6 x 6 inch is probably the most widely available size. A thinner paper will be easier to fold but may not hold the final shape as well. Thicker paper will be a bit harder to work with but the final product will be more sturdy.
Let’s make one!
1. Start by folding your sheet in half. Then fold each end into the middle crease.
2. Open all folds, you should have 3 parallel creases creating 4 equal sections. Rotate 90 degrees and fold in half, against your 3 existing folds.
3. With your sheet still folded in half with 3 vertical creases, fold the lower right edge to meet the third crease, using the middle crease as an anchor.
4. Repeat step 3 on the lower left side, then open up the left and right folds.
5a. The next step is a little tricky. Starting on the right side, invert the fold you just made, tucking the triangle inside.
5b. Now that your shape looks like this, repeat on the left side.
View from the top and front. At this point it looks a bit like a short paper airplane.
6. Next fold each outer flap in towards the center fold. When you are done with the front, flip over and repeat on the back.
7a. Now that your shape looks like this (the same front and back), make a diagonal fold across the dashed line labeled 1. Open and fold diagonally the other way, across line 2.
7b. Crease well, then flip over and repeat both diagonals on the other side.
9a. Starting on either side, tuck in the bottom flaps across each diagonal dashed line. The red shows where there is no existing line and you will be creating a new fold.
9b. Tuck and crease the front flap only, leaving the back flap unfolded.
9c. Tuck and crease the left side, then flip and repeat 9a and 9b on the back.
10a. Taking your right triangle flap, crease it well then invert the fold. Do this only on the right, leaving the left side as is.
10b. Flip over and repeat step 10a on the back, inverting only the triangle flap on the right side.
11. Grab your shape from the outer points as shown and push together gently. The flaps you inverted will get pushed to either side inside the shape. If you have made your creases well, it should pop into the octahedron shape.
12. You now have 2 flaps with openings and 2 flaps without that will come together as shown.
13.Fold the flaps over in the directions shown, being careful not to smash the shape. Tuck the flap without an opening into the flap with the opening on either side.
View from the top and side
If your octahedron is lonely, make it some friends!