Modular Origami

Two years ago I was introduced to this creatively intriguing art called Modular Origami. It was one of the rare weekends when I was enjoying the luxury of being at home. After a long day of morning run, cooking experiments, meeting friends and the must have weekend ritual of ‘cleaning apartment’, I was enjoying some quite time surfing YouTube for paper craft tutorials. It was when I came across this beautiful form of art. Needless to say, I was instantly drawn towards it. Forgetting about the sore muscles and all the plans to have a lazy evening sitting on the couch, I decided to (read jumped to) give Modular Origami a try. In modular origami, a paper is cut in several pieces and each piece is folded to become a triangle shaped building block or ‘a module’. These pieces can be assembled in different variations to form a structure, quite similar concept as Lego.

It is also referred as 3D Origami. I wonder who was the bright mind to name it ‘3D’ in order to differentiate from regular origami? Given regular origami is mostly 3D too. Sigh… Let’s just call it Modular Origami.

Here are few pieces that I made during my ‘phase’ of modular origami.

3D Origami

Though my interest to start yet another project has been long gone,  but the way I took upon these projects and completed them, will always remain a fascinating story to share :).

Want to hear about it? Ah well.. if you insist 😉

Those were the days when I had my base location as Kansas City and was working on a project in Washington DC. Twice every week, I use to spend 2.5 Hrs in flight trying to catch up on sleep or loathing to work on my laptop. I use to have loads of documents to go through that I couldn’t seem to get rid off.  I wanted to give my eyes some break from the constant stare at screens and use that time doing something not related to work (a girl can dream). Modular origami (and later on crochet) kept me company and were my serene friends in the evil world of crying babies, Sleep drooling co-passengers, chatty first timers and air hostess who insist “your seat has to be all the way forward for landing” as if they gave me a luxurious recliner. Being learned recently of modular origami and dying to create my first master piece, I had two pieces of puzzle in my hands and I was trying to fit them together.

Here is the solution I came up with –

1. Print the work documents to be reviewed

2. Read them during flight 🙂


What? It’s not that great an idea? hmm.. here is the twist.

1. Print the work documents to be reviewed

2. Read them during flight

3. As soon as you are done reading half of it, tear the page in two

4. Continue reading the unread portion, while tearing and folding the rest of paper

5. Repeat step 3 and 4!

6. Voila! In no time you have your modular origami building blocks piling up.

I even use to challenge myself to see if I can read faster or fold faster :-P. And for an obsessive compulsive person like me, there is another advantage. Even when I felt a little bored with work, I had a drive to continue reading because I needed those papers ;).

Disclaimer – I AM earth friendly person, I avoid printing and try to use e-documents whenever possible. In this particular scenario I printed because I knew that paper is not going to landfills or waste, it is going to stay as a cherished piece of art in my home.

Small white swan

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This was my first modular origami project and came out beautifully. I followed the instructions available here. It took me around a week to complete this. I think I made these 215 pieces in 2 flights + couple of hours over the weekend. It was surprisingly easy and fast. Don’t be discouraged if you face difficulty memorizing the fold lines at start. Once you get hold of it, you can make them without even using your conscious mind, like while watching television or just sitting in flight ;).

Blue Diamond Pattern Swan 

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One is not enough! Especially when you see so many different things people have created using this technique. Instructions can be found here for this one. I loved this one even more.. but unluckily, I lost it during our move to California :(.

Flower Pots –

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These black and white beauties are indications of my not so creative self and increasing boredom. I have used much bigger size of paper to create my building blocks, which helped in making a larger piece in relatively less time. I loved how the base of round flower-pot turned out. I do not have instructions written down for them, but do leave me comment if you would like to know how I created them and I might be able to explain.

I have loads of paper triangles stacked up in different colors, waiting to be bought to life. May be I will have modular origami phase 2 sometime soon. 😉



  1. priyankamoraes

    Very creative idea and you have done a fabulous job!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. These origami pieces you have created are stunning! How beautiful. I love the swans especially. My best to you 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow these creations are stunning

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I have never heard of this but it’s really effective as an art form and quite beautiful. I expect it takes a long time to complete each piece!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for stopping by! Yes, it does take quite significant amount of time, but in my case it didn’t bothered me much. I had that time being wasted anyway 😀


  5. Beautiful creations, thanks for sharing. I have not seen such large origami pieces before.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Dear! People make even bigger pieces. I have seen a video on youtube where they showcased multiple lifesize peacock and swans. They were breathtaking. The idea of making those many triangles was just not my thing 🙂


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