There are many ways to fold origami stars—four-point stars, shooting stars, even star-shaped boxes. The five-point star is a traditional Japanese shape, and so easy to fold and build that even children can turn them out quickly. Five-point stars can be attached to thread or fishing wire and hung from a hoop to make a starry mobile. They also make a lovely handmade substitute for gift bows on wrapped presents. Like any other charming origami form, the five-point star makes a nice little gift, in and of itself.
Place one piece of paper, pattern or color-side down, on the table in front of you with a side (not a point) toward you. Fold it in half, bottom edge to top edge. Crisp the fold with your finger.
Fold the rectangle in half, left edge to right edge. Crisp the fold.
Open both folds, so that you are looking at the white side of the paper, fully open and creased.
Fold the top right corner, point to center—making a triangle of the top right square. Crisp the fold. Repeat on the bottom left corner (the opposite square).
Repeat step 4 on the bottom right corner and then unfold it (only the bottom right corner) again.
Without rotating the form during the folding, fold the paper again at the horizontal center-line, top to bottom. In effect, the top left square will fold down over the bottom left triangle, and the top right triangle will fold over the bottom right square, which was creased but reopened in step 5.
Pick up the shape and flip it over, bottom side now toward the top. Fold what is now the top left corner into the center fold line. Unfold and flip the form back over.
Repeat steps 1 to 7 on the other four pieces of origami paper.
Make sure the center line on all five pieces tents upward before you assemble the star. If not, turn over any part where the center line is tenting toward the table.
Assemble the star: Join the patterned or colored-end triangle into the slot by sliding it over the plain triangle and then into the triangular pocket. Flip the form over and join the backside in the same way. Repeat this process, adding the three other forms until the star is complete.
Between your softly-pinching forefinger and thumb, pull the center of the star upward from the table to make the star three-dimensional.
If you skip step 11 and keep the shape flat, it will be a traditional origami Chinese bell-flower.
- “Origami Activities”; Michael G. LaFosse; 2003
- “50 Nifty Super Origami Crafts”; Andrea Urton; 1997
Based just outside Chicago, Meg Campbell has worked in the fitness industry since 1997. She’s been writing health-related articles since 2010, focusing primarily on diet and nutrition. Campbell divides her time between her hometown and Buenos Aires, Argentina.