How to make a fabric origami butterfly


A summery scrap-busting project you can make in under 30 minutes! Turn your cut-offs and fabric scraps into origami butterflies with a project by Kitchen Table Sewing. Remember to subscribe to Mollie Makes, or pick up our latest issue, for more fabulous makes and jewellery inspo. 

We think we’ve found the just the tutorial for using our most-loved ditsy florals and vintage prints. Turn them into hair accessories, jewellery or even pretty summer bunting. Who loves fabric origami? Us too!

You will need:
• Rotary cutter and quilters ruler and mat (ideal but not essential)
• 2 x pieces of fabric cut to a 3:4 ratio (e.g. 9 x 12cm)
• Sewing machine
• Sharp scissors
• Chop stick or other turning tool
• Iron
• Needle
• Matching thread

Fabric origami butterfly step 1

Step 1
Sew along the edge leaving a gap in the middle of one long edge to turn. Trim the corners. This will ensure your butterfly has nice, neat pointy wings.

Fabric origami butterfly step 2

Step 2
Turn using a chop stick or similar. Gently ease the corners out even more with a pin if you think they need it. Press. Hand sew the opening shut using blind stitches.

Fabric origami butterfly step 3

Step 3
Fold the rectangle in half along the short side.

Fabric origami butterfly step 4

Step 4
Fold it in half again (short side). Finger press as you go, and keep adjusting the work at each step to check the corners match up.

Fabric origami butterfly step 5

Step 5
With the folded edge of the rectangle facing you, lift and fold the left corner toward the bottom right corner. This should form a triangle.

Fabric origami butterfly step 5a

Flip over. Now your fabric shape should look like this.

Fabric origami butterfly step 6a

Step 6
With your work flipped over, lift the rectangular shape so it points upwards. Press the folded left corner of the rectangle toward the bottom right corner. This creates another triandle. Ensure the lengths line up.

Fabric origami butterfly step 7

Step 7
Now you have a triangle and two small rectangles below it. Starting with the right rectangle first, turn the bottom-left corner inwards and fold a diagonal line across the rectangle, starting top-left to bottom-right.

Fabric origami butterfly step 8

Step 8
Do the same for the left rectangle: turn the bottom-right corner inwards and fold a diagonal line across the rectangle, starting top-right to bottom-left.

Fabric origami butterfly step 9

Step 9
With the peak of the triangle pointing left, fold the top layer of the right-hand corner toward the triangle peak. Your diagonal fold along the rectangle now becomes the butterfly’s body.

Fabric origami butterfly step 10

Step 10
Do the same with the bottom corner: fold top layer of the bottom-right corner toward the peak of the triangle.

Fabric origami butterfly step 11

Step 11
Pinch the bottom corners to firm up the body and stitch in place with needle and thread.

This tutorial was originally published on Kitchen Table Sewing. Follow on Kitchen Table Sewing on Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter and share your butterfly pics using #OrigamiButterflies.

Butterfly origami

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  • Kimber Kempton

    This is the best tutorial I have found for these fabric cuties! Mine turned out awesome! I’ve made different sizes using the 3:4 ratio.

  • Sybila Frank

    Wow, such an excellent diy project. I like.