How-to: Make an Origami/Kirigami Bow

Origami Bow Tutorial

I love origami, and when I saw this tutorial at Tweety Atalier I knew I had found my new favorite pattern. I don’t speak or read Korean, but fortunately for me I’ve done enough origami to be able to figure out the instructions on my own. I figure, however, this might be valuable to those of you who don’t speak Korean and would like to know how to make these adorable little lovelies. I also added several extra instructional steps that I thought would help make the instructions easier to use for someone who may be less experienced in origami.

Click to view full instructions
Origami Bow Tutorial

Get origami paper ready

Fold paper horizontally with back side facing outwards

Open paper and fold the paper horizontally the other way

Open paper and fold on the diagonal with print side facing outwards. Do this for both diagonals.

Now open your paper. Your pre-folding is all done and it should look like this!

Squish the edges of the diagonal corners together and the paper should just fall into place like this.

Fold the top corner down by about 1/2 an inch or so (I guess its arbitrary depending on the size of your paper). This will determine the proportion of the middle of your bow, so judge it that way.

Open your paper back up. Now you have this nice little square in the middle.

Crease the edges of the square all upwards and then squeeze the edges of the little square inwards at the horizontal folds until it collapses. See next picture for a visual explanation.

Your squeezed inner little square will look like this.

Flatten your square.

Fold the top edges of your square towards the middle like so.

Fold the top edges down for both sides. Then grab the bottom corner and pull upwards.

Here's what it should look like partially open.

Flatten out your paper and make your little square nice and crisp.

Cut along the edge of the upper squares towards the middle.

Here are where the cuts are going to be.

Tip: If you're like me and you're fully incapable of cutting a piece of paper while it's folded you can do what I do and just undo the whole thing, cut to the tips of the little square and then re-fold the paper. I think it's kind of a personal preference, though.

Fold the top flap down.

Here's what it will look like.

Fold the edges of the "bow" part like so. In this step it is very important that your edges line up properly and your folds are nice and neat. The line where the edges of the paper meet is actually visible in the final bow form.

Cut the bottom square up to the folded apex.

Fold the edges of the top of the bottom square down like so. This will determine how wide your bow is, so it's also arbitrary. I like to do it about 1/2 inch.

Fold the inside edges (where you cut) of the bottom square upwards. I like to make the upper edge parallel with the edge of the piece i just folded.

Tuck the corner of the pointy bow parts under the little square. The bow stays fine on its own, but if you're doing this as a gift or a card, I suggest putting a glue dot or a bit of glue under the little square just to keep it in place. Then, cut the bottom part to however you like your bow to look. Sometimes I only cut the little edge that's floating off to make a straight slanted line, but most of the time I cut where the orange lines are to form a "v" on the edge

Your finished bow will look like this


Now, you may be wondering… What am i supposed to do with the bow now?!… Well, here are some examples:

Have your bow join other bows and make a bow army.

Stick your bow to a card

Use your bow to jazz up a gift when you're too lazy to wrap it.

You can even decorate your bow by adding a button or bead to the middle


A ton more examples can be found here.  My personal favorite is this one:



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  • the square dissapeared when i got to step 24 so my bow came without the square in the middle :( ill keep practicing but it’s still tough.

  • Hi Kim!

    Thank you for this tutorial!
    You can see my bows here:

    Best wishes from Germany!

  • Thank you, I had been struggling hopelessly with the Korean instructions. These are so clear.

  • I used to make these when I was a young pup, my halmonee (granny) was a bad ass at it. Dunno where she learnt it from. I prob couldn’t even fold a paper plane now.

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