Origami Butterflies for Handmade Fair & Together for Short Lives | A Tutorial

A swarm of butterflies is set to land on Ragley Hall in Warwickshire and Bowood House and Gardens in Wiltshire, as Kirstie Allsopp calls on craft enthusiasts across the region to create and donate – all in the name of a good cause.

Ahead of the Handmade Fair at Ragley Hall and Bowood House and Gardens, handy crafters are being asked to lend their skills to make beautiful origami butterflies in aid of Together for Short Lives; a leading UK charity for children with life-threatening and life-limiting conditions.

At the Fair, the butterflies will be brought together to form an array of decorative garlands, creating a crowd-sourced installation made entirely by the public. The artwork will continue to grow at The Handmade Fair at Warwickshire 11th - 13th May and Wiltshire show on 22nd -24th June, where guests can make more butterflies and donate to the charity.

Together for Short Lives is a leading UK charity for children with life-threatening and life-limiting conditions. Katharine Scott from Together for Short Lives said: Katherine Scott from Together for Short Lives said: “This unique and beautiful creation, made by hundreds of crafty members of the public, will raise vital funds and generate awareness of the work we do at Together for Short Lives. Our team can’t wait to see the garlands in all their glory – thank you to everyone who is able to contribute.”

For more information and tickets visit thehandmadefair.com and to make one of your own butterflies just follow my instructions below:

Level: Easy


1. You will need a square piece of paper and a pair of scissors

2. Fold your paper diagonally from one corner to one corner.

3. Repeat on the other diagonal so that when you open the sheet of paper it looks the same as in our photo.

4. Now you are going to fold it again but this time side to side, on each side (so not diagonal)

5. When you open up your sheet you should now have a "star" shape of lines made by the folds you have made.

6. A little tricky but hold the paper like I am in the photo and manipulate that "triangle" you can see so that they triangle joins as shown in Step 7.

7. See above

8. Fold down on that side so it looks like this.

9. Repeat Steps 6-8 on the other side so that you now have a larger triangle formed some paper folded under each triangle.

10. Now fold your triangle in half and turn it around so that the longer diagonal side is in the same position as in the photo. You want to make sure that the all the tips on the bottom right hand side (where my fingers are) are not joined i.e. if I let go of my finger that tip would not stay down like the other tips. That fold on my left is what I refer to as "single folded edge" in the next step.

11. Please read this before cutting: Cut the tip where my finger was on in Step 10 into a round shape. If you are unsure - open up your sheet of paper and cut each tip individually so it looks the same as in Step 12.
For Reference: In this photo my single folded edge (there is only one) is on the right hand side. See Step 10 for more information. 

12. When you open your sheet up it should now look like this.

13. Now fold each top side over to the bottom, bringing the "round cut tip" down towards the tip of your shape (so its like the bottton tip of a heart shape almost). You want the edges of these folds to match the centre crease line fold.

14 + 15. Now you are going to fold that bottom tip straight up and over the edge of the paper so it looks like the photo in Step 15. This will feel strange as you will need to force the paper that far over. Don't worry just go with it!

16. Fold that tip over the like I have done.

17. Fold that tip you have just folded over in Step 17 inwards like this so that you are pinching in the centre to make the wings rounded. Let go and you will then have a lovely butterfly. Tip: If that little triangle fold you made in Step 16 isn't staying down use a little bit of glue to help!

Happy butterfly making! 

Jane x