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How to Make an Origami Flower and a Leaf (Spanish Eye)

This origami flower and leaf makes a marvelous head ornament when creating a “Calavera Catrina”, a cultural Mexican icon and an integral part of the of the Day of the Dead celebrations.

If this origami flower is made with orange paper, it looks like a flower known as Spanish Eye (Thunbergia Alata). There is a slight difference between a real flower and the model though, as the origami version has four petals, not five. The dark center of the origami model is made by inserting a tiny black paper square and then locking it with a few folds.

The language of flowers expresses many different sentiments. In addition to making a marvelous head ornament for an origami skull, this origami flower can be used to embellish a greeting card such as birthday, get well, sympathy, or thank-you card. It is also holds its own as a stand-alone model.

The following video will demonstrate how to make this flower and leaf.

Tips and suggestions for making the origami flower and leaf

  • The origami flower and the leaf are both made with square pieces of paper.
  • A 6×6-inch (15x15cm.) square is perfect for learning each of these models.
  • If you are making a flower as an accessory for an origami skull, use a square whose side measures one third the side of the square used for the skull.  (Shown in the video)
  • The dark center of the origami flower is made by inserting a tiny black paper square and then locking it with a few folds.
  • Make the leaf with a paper of the same size as the flower.
  • The finished origami flower and the leaf show only one side of the paper. It’s not necessary to use paper with a different color on each side.
  • Both the flower and the leaf are flat. To flatten them after folding leave them under a book overnight.

The following are links to videos related the Day of the Dead series


Origami Skull (Design of Leyla Torres)

Click here for the ORIGAMI SKULL blog post and video

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Origami Hat (Design of Leyla Torres)


Click here for the origami hat blog post and video

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Origami Bow Tie (Design of Leyla Torres)

Click here for the ORIGAMI BOW TIE blog post and video

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Origami Hot Peppers (Design of Leyla Torres)


Click here for the ORIGAMI HOT PEPPER blog post and video

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Origami Roses (Design of Gay Merrill Gross)


Click here for ORIGAMI ROSES blog post and video

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10 thoughts on “How to Make an Origami Flower and a Leaf (Spanish Eye)”

  1. Dear Leyla,
    Your website and teaching videos are a delight. I love to do all your origami designs and others you show from folders around the world.
    I have shown my daughter, Susan, your website and she will also be following your every move!!!!!!
    Muchas gracias, Greta Kessler

  2. Excelentes!! Ademas faciles de hacer y se pueden utilizar en muchos momentos no solo para el Dia de los Muertos.
    GRACIAS y exitos
    Elsa Lucia

  3. Hello Leyla,
    Once again, you have tickled my creativity! I absolutely loved your Dia de los Muertos Skull design and the accessories! I have made many to send as Halloween Greetings and found an ideal Origami square envelope to fashion for mailing them, using a 12″ square sheet of Scrapbooking paper folded with the printed side inside! PERFECT!
    I wish everyone filming an Origami tutorial would watch YOURS to see how to CAREFULLY and CLEARLY they should film and narrate THEIR tutorials! Yours are not only the BEST, but enable us to successfully and joyfully complete our model without frustration or disappointment!
    Thank You, Leyla!

    • Thank you Sharon, for your kind words. I’m glad you like this model. It’s been a lot of fun making the whole series.
      I have to try scrapbooking paper.
      If you post a photo of your sculls, please send a link!


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