How to Make an origami pajarita

The pajarita, or little bird, is an easy origami project that is often used to teach the art of paper folding to beginners. This model takes just a few minutes to complete.

You will need to acquire a piece of paper that has been cut into a perfect square. If the square’s dimensions are not accurate, then the model will not fold up correctly. Use plain white copy paper (or similar) for practice and then move on to colored or patterned paper, if desired. If you use two-sided paper for this model, then the head will be one color and the body another.

Fold your model on a hard, flat surface such as a table or hardback book. Folding against this type of surface will help you produce a more accurately folded model and will allow you to make sharp creases. For even sharper creases, run a ruler or pencil edge over each one as you work.

  1. Position a square of paper on your work surface so that its edges are facing up and down, left and right. If you are using two-sided paper, make sure that the color you want for the bird’s head is facing down.
  2. Bring the left edge of the model over to meet the right edge. Crease and unfold.
  3. Bring the left edge of the model over to meet the center vertical crease line created in Step 2. Crease and leave folded.
  4. Repeat Step 3 for the right edge of the model.
  5. Bring the top edge of the newly formed rectangle down to meet the bottom edge. Crease and unfold.
  6. Bring the top edge of the model down to meet the center horizontal crease line created in Step 5. Crease and leave folded.
  7. Repeat Step 6 for the bottom edge of the model. Two horizontal rectangular flaps should now make up the top layer of the model.
  8. Bring the lower-left point of the top rectangular flap up to meet the midpoint of the model’s upper edge. The left half of the top rectangular flap’s lower edge should come up to lie along the vertical center crease line. Crease and unfold.
  9. Repeat Step 8 for the top rectangular flap’s lower right point.
  10. Bring the upper left point of the bottom rectangular flap down to meet the midpoint of the model’s lower edge. The left half of the bottom rectangular flap’s upper edge should come down to lie along the vertical center crease line. Crease and unfold.
  11. Repeat Step 10 for the bottom rectangular flap’s upper right point.
  12. Lift the top rectangular flap up and locate the two free points underneath. Each of these points should touch the intersection of the model’s vertical and horizontal crease lines.
  13. Grasp each of the points between thumbs and forefingers and pull them outward. The top half of the model should collapse along crease lines made in Steps 10-11 to form a shape that resembles the roof of a house. Press flat.
  14. Repeat Step 13 for the bottom rectangle to create a symmetrical model. Turn the model over and lift it in one hand.
  15. Bring the top edge down diagonally to lie along the model’s right edge. The top right point should come up to stick straight out from the top of the model and the upper left point should come down to stick straight out from the bottom. Press the model flat onto your work surface and turn it over.
  16. Position the model so that the vertical flap created in Step 15 is to the left.
  17. Bring the left point of the model down to meet the bottom point. Press flat.
  18. Locate the diagonal crease line that runs from left to right along the upper portion of the model’s vertical flap.
  19. Open up the right edge of the model and bring the top point to the left to reverse the diagonal crease line located in Step 18. Close the right edge of the model and press flat. The model’s top point becomes the bird’s head, the bottom point becomes the front legs and the right point becomes the tail.
  20. Stand the bird up to rest on its legs and tail.

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