An origami top is a pretty paper toy or display item.
A folded paper top can be made with three sheets of square paper. You can use any size of square you want, but 6 or 8 inch squares are the easiest to work with.
Choose colors and patterns that coordinate to make the prettiest looking paper top. Construction paper, colored printer paper, adult coloring sheets, scrapbook paper, or wrapping paper will work for the solid sheets if you don’t have origami paper.
1. Make 3 Blintz Bases
To begin, fold all three sheets of paper into a blintz base. A blintz base is made by folding the paper in half along one diagonal. Unfold the paper. Fold the paper in half along the other diagonal. Unfold the paper once more and fold each corner in to meet the center point.
2. Start the Center of the Top
Now you will work on making the center of the top. Take one of the blintz bases and fold each corner into the center once more. Fold the corners into the center a third time to make what is known as a triple blintz.
3. Finish the Center of the Top
Turn the paper over and fold it in half in both directions to make creates along both of the diagonal corners. Flip the paper back over and fold it in half to make horizontal creases in both directions. Squeeze the paper at the corners to make the shape shown in the photo above. The center of your top is now complete.
4. Start the Second Layer of the Top
To make the second layer of the top, place your blintz base in front of you with the folded flaps face down. Fold each corner in to meet the center crease. Turn the paper back over and fold the corners in to meet the center crease a final time.
5. Finish the Second Layer of the Top
Flip the paper over. Fold back each of the corner flaps so they touch the outer points of the square you’ve created. Insert the first layer of your top into the flaps so your model looks like the photo above.
6. Start the Bottom of the Top
To make the bottom of the top, place your final blintz base in front of you. Unfold the paper. Fold the top and bottom edges in to the center. Turn the paper 90 degrees and fold both edges in to the center to form a square.
7. Make a Boat Base
Open out both the top flaps and press the paper down to make triangles. Use the creases made in previous steps as a guide for coaxing the paper into the desired shape. Repeat this process with the bottom flaps. In origami, this form is called a boat base.
8. Make Triangle Points
Turn the paper over and fold it in half towards you. Fold the top left flap forward so it points straight down. Fold the right flap the same way.
Flip the paper over and repeat this process. When finished, your project should look like the photo above.
9. Make Squares
Open one flap and push it flat to form a square. Repeat with the other flap.Flip the paper over and form two squares using the triangle flaps on this side. Unfold the paper so it looks like the model in the photo above.
10. Fold the Corners In
Fold each of the four corners in to make small triangles. On each of the four flaps, fold the outer corners in to meet the middle creases.
11. Create Diamond Points
Open the folds you made in the previous step and flatten each corner into a diamond point as shown in the photo to the left.
12. Finish the Top Base
Fold back each of the four points that meet in the center so they form the outline of a square. Fold the long points back over the triangles so they point to the center of the paper.
13. Complete Your Origami Top
Insert the unit created at the end of Step 5 into the middle to complete your origami top.
Hold the center with your thumb and forefinger to gently spin your new paper toy.