Swallowtail Butterfly

by Leyla Torres on May 9, 2011

in -Animals, -Boxes & Containers, -Functional, -Video Instructions, ..insects, • Creators/Teachers

Post image for Swallowtail Butterfly

When visiting Evi Binzinger’s flikr page not long ago, I spotted –among other lovely origami models, this swallowtail butterfly that Evi had created. I fell in love with it and immediately set myself the task of deciphering the folding sequence. This sequence turned out to be as enjoyable as looking at the finished butterfly.

With concave wings, the butterfly can be used as a decorative plate to offer candy or other delectable goodies. As a symbol of love and good luck, I also imagine it as a special ornament on a wrapped wedding or anniversary gift.

Evi Binzinger (Germany) creates simple yet ingenious and inspirational models that she generously shares on her flickr page. Many thanks to Evi for allowing me to share here on Origami Spirit  a video demonstrating the folding sequence of her precious butterfly.

Evi suggests one possible variation from the butterfly’s base to be folded as a four-leaf clover. I’m sure that if we try, we’ll invite good fortune should we figure this out as well!

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{ 40 comments… read them below or add one }

Scifimom May 10, 2011 at 4:23 am

Did it, a little rough (I used a tiny piese of cube paper) But did it! Your tutorials are great! Greetings from Greece


Leyla Torres May 10, 2011 at 9:08 am

Congratulations on folding the origami butterfly. If you ever post photos of it online, please share the link here!


evi binzinger May 10, 2011 at 9:37 am

thank you very much for loading up your beautiful video, leyla!


Leyla Torres May 10, 2011 at 9:55 am

Keep up your good work Evi!


Loading... July 30, 2013 at 10:29 am

can I ask your permission to use your origami picture


Leyla Torres July 31, 2013 at 11:06 am

For permissions please contact me directly via my contact page. Please specify which picture do you want to use and where will you publish it.


Dawn Tucker May 10, 2011 at 1:37 pm

What a beautiful model! You explained and illustrated the process clearly. Wonderful job of sharing this model with the world! I’m thinking of making a mobile of these!


Leyla Torres May 10, 2011 at 2:01 pm

A mobile…what a good idea for this model!


Amy May 11, 2011 at 5:28 pm

Beautiful! This one will add to my collection of favourties, which include the origami house and bunny box.


David Wires August 14, 2011 at 8:43 pm

Saw this in creased mag. like the way the back wings are folded and curled. Also can balance on the end of wire or green felt tip pen colored skewer in a pot of flowers. Also like to use chopsticks for display…


Maureen Strachan September 10, 2011 at 7:16 pm

Saw this butterfly on flickr a few months ago and fell in love with it, I am so happy to have found your web site and this video (made to house too). Now that I have
managed the butterfly off to try some of your other videos. Thank you so much
and to Evi too!


Hannah January 22, 2012 at 5:35 pm

I’m so excited to have found this article! I will try to make some of these by tomorrow. Do you know Gossip Girl? Serena has this beautiful butterfly installation above her bed made by Paul Villinski. Not sure if I’m allowed to put a link in here, but if you don’t know it you should google it. That’s what I want to re-build. Do you have some advise on the paper to use? Is it possible with every sort of paper? (And please excuse my English, i don’t know when it turned so bad, in school I was quite good at it :D)


Leyla Torres January 22, 2012 at 6:02 pm

Hi Hanna,
Yes, I found the link for the Gossip Girl butterfly installation above her bed… Here it is:
What a great idea to use this origami butterfly to make your own Serena butterfly installation. Thank you for sharing!
As far as paper goes to make the butterfly, I have used one called “Kami” which is specially for origami, but, ANY kind of thin square piece of paper should be fine.
Here I have a link to a post on 12 types of different found papers.
I am looking forward to seeing your own butterfy installation. Please send me a picture when you make it!


Heidi February 11, 2012 at 1:17 pm

I can’t make it at all.. After 07.37 i just dont have a clue what to do..? Everything gets all wrong..=(


Marzena March 15, 2012 at 2:47 pm

Piękny model, Zaraz go zrobimy, będzie wisiał w naszej pracowni :<)


Leyla Torres April 27, 2012 at 1:29 pm



edward April 27, 2012 at 1:00 pm

Hi Leyla, compliments from Malaysia. Nice piece.


Leyla Torres April 27, 2012 at 1:29 pm

Thank you Edward!


Gill Slane July 28, 2012 at 12:57 pm

Thank you so much for posting this, Leyla – it’s beautiful and you make it look so easy, even though I’m sure it’s not! Evi has a huge amount of talent to be able to design such an amazing piece.

I’ll give this a try sometime soon. By the way, your voice is very relaxing, it reminds me of my Spanish friend Maria so it makes me smile. :-D

Best wishes from Edinburgh, Scotland. xx


Leyla Torres August 30, 2012 at 10:11 am

Hi Gill. I hope you got the chance to fold this butterfly. Send us a link to a picture if you did!


yeribel August 29, 2012 at 1:13 pm

Simplemente hermosa


Leyla Torres August 30, 2012 at 10:10 am

Gracias Yeribel


Khushi October 19, 2012 at 6:22 am

You do make such a wonderful model simple and fun! Thanks a bunch!


Judith January 10, 2013 at 12:04 pm

I love this butterfly and have managed most of it but I am stuck on the bottom two wings and how to make them curve – just cant uderstand how to do it.


Leyla Torres January 10, 2013 at 3:14 pm

Hi Judith,
Thank you for your feedback. Some times we just need to step away and go back later if we fail to understand an origami step. Try resting your mind ad give it some time.


jams March 27, 2013 at 7:34 am

its seems easy nd beautiful.


d scd April 22, 2013 at 3:59 pm

instructions on paper plz!!!


Agatha May 13, 2013 at 4:59 am

Yipiiee. Thank you for posting how to do that lovely butterfly. Now i have the idea to put the butterfly origami in my portfolio to look more beautiful. Again, thank you. Your videos are great!


LaDonna November 19, 2013 at 9:14 pm

Hi- just finished mine and it is perfect. I got stuck at a few spots but I “stepped back” like you instructed another poster and between that and the “pause” button I finally got it.
I used traditional origami pre-cut papers I bought it Michael’s.They are a little thicker and harder to see the lines since the paper is printed but I pressed on.
Thank you for the instructions!


Leyla Torres November 20, 2013 at 12:08 pm

Hi La Donna,

Congratulations on your folding it!! Some times it takes perseverance and a few tries, but you did it. Thank you for sharing your success!.


Laizele Tudlong November 20, 2013 at 3:14 am

Just started doing origami and it is so wonderful, wow. I would like to ask if you have a printable instruction for your tutorial. Keep up the good and creative work. Nicely done. Greetings here in the Philippines :) <3


Leyla Torres November 20, 2013 at 12:07 pm

Hi Laizele,
I’m glad you are enjoying paper folding. At the moment I don’t have printable instructions for the butterfly.


Naty Nefesh December 9, 2013 at 7:39 pm

Como siempre es un placer plegar con tus tutoriales. Gracias por crearlos :)


Leyla Torres December 10, 2013 at 2:05 pm

Es un placer hacerlos. Me alegra que te gusten. Gracias por escribir!


Tiana January 23, 2014 at 10:25 pm

I would love to teach this to a group this Saturday, has anyone made diagram instructions for this swallowtail?

W/a Smile, Tiana


Leyla Torres January 24, 2014 at 3:34 pm

Hi Tiana,
I don’t know of diagram instructions. There is one related butterfly published in one of the Crease magazines, but I cannot recall which one, and I don’t have access to it now.


Arnaud August 17, 2014 at 6:30 am

Hi Leyla,
and thank you for your great tutorials. I’ve been looking for a butterfly one since yesterday and here it is : my first butterfly is done and I’m quite proud of it!
Greetings from France (^_^)


Leyla Torres August 25, 2014 at 11:30 am

Greating Arnaud and congratulations on having made the butterfly. Thank you for writing!


macchinno July 2, 2015 at 9:13 am

this is a beautiful tutorial! but eh i spent over thirty minutes just making it because ugh my fingers won’t work ;w;


Leyla Torres July 2, 2015 at 9:46 am

Great for trying, Macchinno! Try it more than once and be patient. Your fingers will eventually learn. It will be an honor for the teacher. She spent more than 40 hours making the video ;-)


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