This origami ship is a simple project that can be completed in just a few minutes. While most traditional origami models are folded from a square of paper, this model is folded from a rectangle an 8 X 11 sheet of copy paper. Once you have successfully folded this ship, you can adjust the size of the rectangle in order to render a larger or smaller model. Any paper you choose, however, should be at least as heavy as the copy paper.
Apart from the paper, you’ll need a long wooden skewer for the ship’s mast, a small square of paper for the sail, a pencil, and a pair of scissors. You’ll also need a surface upon which to fold your model. Folding against a surface that is hard and flat will allow you to make the accurate folds and sharp creases necessary for a successful model. Tables and hardback books make excellent folding surfaces.
Follow the directions carefully and move on to the next step only when you are sure that all previous steps have been correctly completed. Make each crease as sharp as possible by running a pencil or ruler edge over each one as you work.
Follow these Steps
- Position a sheet of 8 1/2″ X 11″ paper on your work surface so that the short edges are facing up and down. If you are using two-sided paper, then the color you want for the exterior of the ship should be facing up.
- Bring the top edge down to meet the bottom edge. Crease and leave folded.
- Bring the left edge over to meet the right edge. Crease just enough to mark the vertical center of the model – do not make a sharp crease. Unfold.
- Bring the left half of the model’s folded top edge down to meet the vertical center crease line. Crease and leave folded. Note that this edge will not come all the way down the bottom edge of the paper.
- Repeat Step 4 for the right half of the model’s folded top edge. Note that Steps 4 -5 form two triangular flaps at the top of the model.
- Bring the bottom edge of the model (top layer only) up as far as it will easily go. Crease and leave folded. The resulting crease line should run along the bases of the two triangular flaps formed in Steps 4 -5. Turn the model over.
- Bring the bottom edge of the model up to create a folded strip that is identical to the one created in Step 6. Crease and leave folded. Turn the model over.
- Open up the bottom edge of the model and push in at its left and right points. The center of the model’s top layer should rise up as the points come together and the bottom layer should fold downward in a similar manner. Press the model flat between your hands and rotate it to the right.
- Position the diamond-shaped model on your work surface so that the open end is still facing you and what was the top of the model in Step 8 is now facing to the right.
- Bring the bottom point of the model (top layer only) up to a point that is approximately 1/2″ from the top point. Crease and leave folded.
- Turn the model over and repeat Step 10.
- Repeat Step 8.
- Bring the blunted bottom point of the model (top layer only) up to meet the top point. The resulting crease line should run along the horizontal center of the model’s top layer.
- Turn the model over and repeat Step 13.
- Grasp the two flaps that enclose either side of the model’s interior-point and pull them apart to create the ship. Pull the sides of the ship apart so that the folds of the model separate at its bottom. Set the model aside.
- Position a small square (approximately 3 1/2″) of paper on your work surface so that its points are facing up and down, left and right. Use a pencil to round out the left and right points and use scissors to trim the paper at these drawn lines. This will form the sail of the ship.
- Bring the top point of the small rounded diamond shape down to meet the bottom point and hold the points together. Do not make a crease.
- Place the layered points from Step 17 over the tip of a wooden skewer and push down so that the skewer penetrates both layers of paper. This forms the ship’s mast.
- Insert the skewer into the cone-shaped protrusion at the model’s interior to complete the ship.