How to Make an Origami Elephant

  • 01 of 11

    Make an Origami Elephant

    A pair of origami elephants
    Chrissy Pk

    This is an intermediate-level origami project, made from a single sheet of square paper. If you are a beginner at origami, you may find this project tricky.

    Continue to 2 of 11 below.
  • 02 of 11

    The First Folds

    Origami elephant tutorial step one
    Chrissy Pk
    • Start with your paper white side up if it has one. Fold the paper in half, from left to right and then bottom to top. 
    • Next, fold the top and bottom edge to the horizontal central crease and unfold.
    • Fold the left and right edges to the vertical central crease and unfold.
    • You now have a neat grid of 15 equal sections.
    Continue to 3 of 11 below.
  • 03 of 11


    Origami elephant tutorial step two
    Chrissy Pk
    • Rotate the paper so that it is a diamond.
    • Fold the top, bottom and left corner to the central crease–not the right corner (keep this corner on the right side–this will become the elephant's head).
    • Fold the bottom edge up to meet the top-most horizontal crease. Unfold.
    • Repeat the last step, fold the top corner down to the lowest horizontal crease, and the right and left corners to their opposing creases.
    Continue to 4 of 11 below.
  • 04 of 11

    Flip and Fold

    Origami elephant tutorial step three
    Chrissy Pk
    • Fold the paper as shown, creasing only where indicated.
    • Repeat for the other diagonal crease.
    • Flip the paper over, from top to bottom, keeping the right (uncreased) section on the right.
    • Fold the left corner to the right, to the point indicated. For thick paper, avoid the middle diamond.
    Continue to 5 of 11 below.
  • 05 of 11

    Fold the Corners In

    Origami elephant tutorial step four
    Chrissy Pk
    • Fold the corner back over to the left. 
    • Flip the paper over, from top to bottom.
    • Fold the bottom right section diagonally up to the left, followed by the top right section.
    • Fold the right section over to the left, squashing the diagonal folds you just made.
    Continue to 6 of 11 below.
  • 06 of 11

    Rotate and Fold

    Origami elephant tutorial step five
    Chrissy Pk
    • Rotate the paper.
    • Now you can grab the bottom section and flip it under and behind. The top flap will come down to the bottom.
    • Next, you'll fold the left and right corners of the lower section to the central crease.
    • You can flip the flaps up to make it easier to see.
    Continue to 7 of 11 below.
  • 07 of 11

    The V-Shape Fold

    Origami elephant tutorial step six
    Chrissy Pk
    • Flip the paper over to the other side.
    • There is a V-shaped crease on the top of the front-most flap–these creases need to be re-folded as valley creases.
    • Flip the model over and rotate as shown.
    • Fold the model in half, from top to bottom.
    Continue to 8 of 11 below.
  • 08 of 11

    Forming the Trunk

    Origami elephant tutorial step seven
    Chrissy Pk
    • Hold onto the elephant's trunk and the back of his head, push gently. A new crease will form.
    • There should be a diamond shape on top of the elephant. Open out the bottom of the model and push on that diamond, flattening it.
    • Pinch the diagonal edge that appears on the left.
    Continue to 9 of 11 below.
  • 09 of 11

    Shaping the Other Side

    Origami elephant tutorial step eight
    Chrissy Pk
    • Fold the flap over to the right.
    • There is already a crease here; fold it over and tuck it behind.
    • Now you need to repeat these steps on the other side of the elephant.
    • Find the back of the elephant and pinch it, keeping that diamond intact.
    Continue to 10 of 11 below.
  • 10 of 11

    Forming Pleats

    Origami elephant tutorial step nine
    Chrissy Pk
    • Make a small, thin fold. 
    • Open the flap that was under the tail-end of the elephant.
    • Hold it as shown.
    • The left of the diamond shape needs to be folded into pleats over to the right.
    Continue to 11 of 11 below.
  • 11 of 11

    Finishing the Elephant

    Origami elephant tutorial step ten
    Chrissy Pk
    • Fold the top corner over and underneath the elephant. It will secure his "legs."
    • Now you can shape the trunk however you like. You can fold it to be pointing up or down. After deciding, make a crease and then inside reverse fold it. Your origami elephant is now complete.