I just finished my latest little Origami project, the Origami House Box by Ayako (Akiko) Kawate. I am actually in love with Mrs. Kawate’s cute Origami boxes! In the past I folded the Origami Money Box and the Origami Rose Box – both from the same designer. These two models were actually the reason why I decided to buy her latest Origami book, from which this project is from.

Tip: Papers I usually buy on Ebay or Origami Shop. Japanese books I tend to buy from CDJapan.

Origami House Box

Design: Ayako Kawate / 川手章子

Diagram can be found: Three-dimensional ORIGAMI Goods / 立体ORIGAMI雑貨 折って使える, p. 50/51

Paper: red & white; patterned (French)

My tips for this model

I actually want to share several tips that could make your finished Origami House Box more accurate. For one, the book suggests to kind of pre-crease through several layers of paper (steps 1 – 3 for the house & especially 5 – 7 for the roof). This might be the proper Japanese way, but if your creases don’t align perfectly, then all the created folds might be a tiny bit off. So what I did, I folded the grid (or the diamond shapes for the roof! – you can just score those lines) the regular (but slower) way, and then just re-enforced the marked valley or mountain folds that you will need for the collapse. And my second tip would be regarding the closing folds for the roof. The book suggests to divide the section into three and fold accordingly. But as it happens with these folds that need to be folded over twice, they will hang a bit over once you roll over first – and then they won’t align with the pre-crease for the next round. So what I did, I measured the distance, divided it by 3 (just like the book) and then took off a tiny bit from the most outside crease and added that bit to the second crease. So for example (15 cm regular Kami paper for the roof): The distance was 3.75 cm : 3 = 1.25; Instead of making both folds equal to 1.25, I made the outside one 1.1 cm and the second one 1.4 cm. If you have the book with the diagram in front of you (and you attempted a test fold – as I always do with plain copy paper), I hope you understand what I mean.

Also, if you fold this model in other measurements that given in the book (15 cm / 6 in), I calculated the percent that needs to differ between the house body and the roof: 96.6 %, so the lid fits snuggly onto the bottom of the box.

As always, try to use stiffer paper if you want to make use of your Origami house box. If you fold them small, like I did with my miniature Origami house box, then it won’t matter so much, but the larger you go, the more the paper needs to be stiff to hold its shape. If you happen to use card stock, be sure to pre-crease all folds before attempting to collapse.


If you use 15 cm / 6 in regular Kami / Origami paper, the finished box will be about 7.5 cm x 4 cm x ~ 7.3 cm (height). My smallest Origami House Box was made from Patterned Origami paper, original size 7.6 cm – finished measurements: 3.5 cm x 1.8 cm x ~ 3.7 cm.

You might also be interested in my paper recommendations including different Origami paper usage, personal hints, tips & what to avoid when buying online. To get updates on my latest video tutorials, subscribe to my youtube channel, see what other Origami models I am working on right now – follow me on Instagram and subscribe to my Newsletter.