Origami Tutorial: Hydrangea (Shuzo Fujimoto)

In this video I’m going to show you how to fold an origami hydrangea, designed by Shuzo Fujimoto. Diagrams are published in “Folding origami Hydrangea” by Shuzo Fujimoto, which includes many variations of this model. I’m actually going to show a folding method that is different to the one presented in the book, simply because it’s easier to add as many, or as few layers as you want to this model. Here you can see 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. But you could use fewer layers like here or more layers like here. This is a fractal design in that each of the layers is the same just smaller and you can continue with the same folding sequence as long as you like and of course the paper permits. Now, in this video I’m going to use a square sheet of paper with a side length of 15 cm or 6 in and the finished model then has a side length of 7.5 cm or 3 in, so it’s exactly one quarter of that original sheet. And you can completely flatten the model, or, which I actually prefer, leave it in this slightly 3D shape of a blossom and this model measures about 2 cm or 3/4 in high. Now if you want a colored model and one side is white, we’re going to start with the colored side up and fold edge to edge. Unfold, rotate and again crease, bringing edge to edge. It’s good to make sharp creases throughout, because all of these creases make the collapsing easier Now we’re going to take the edge and bring it to the central crease line. Unfold and repeat three more times. Then we’re going to take the edge and bring it to the quarter crease line and again, crease. Now flip over the paper and we’re going to bring the corner to the center or rather make creases between the half way marks. I think it’s more important to get the precision on the edges of the paper. And then we’re going to take the corner and bring it to that intersection of the quarter creases or rather creating a crease between these points right here and again, I think the model gets more precise if you actually work with those marks, rather than bringing the corner to the intersection. And the more precisely you fold, the more layers you can add. Once we have all of those creases into place, we’re going to flip it back over onto the colored side and now we’re going to collapse the base and after that you just repeat the process for each layer. So first we want to ensure that we have mountain folds along these blintzes that we did and then we want to push these 4 small corners inside. So three of them are inside already and this one I just pushed in And then you’re going to take this paper and push it. And here you can see a triangle popping up just like we want and on this side it’s not quite working. And for that I’m just simply going to take my finger and then you can see this crease is slightly dented and I’m going to push it out and then it works out fine. And same on the other side again. Here, you can see that crease line right there wasn’t a mountain fold and that’s why that wasn’t working. And then you just push this together and then you can take two of these points and push them together to completely flatten them. And same on the other side. And then, the base of the hydrangea is collapsed. And this constitutes two layers of the finished hydrangea. This layer and the second one. And now I’m going to zoom in to show you the process of folding the next iteration and that repeats over and over. So this is the base of the model and as you can see in the finished model the petals are shaped. So before we actually add the next layer we’re first going to precrease the shaping of the petals, because in the end you have to shape the petals from the smallest layer down to the largest one. So first we’re going to flip over the model and we’re going to take a corner and bring it right to that corner of that square on top. And repeat 7 more times. So now you can see that the outermost petals are formed, but we have to unfold all of these creases, so that we can continue with the next layer. So, to shape the next layer, we’re always going to fold one of these petals to the side and then bring the corner to that crease intersection right there. And repeat all the way around. And once we have those pre-creasings in place, we can now add the next layer. For this, we’re first going to flip the model over and then take a corner and crease it to the center and it’s actually more important to have a crease that really goes up to those halfway points, because then you get a nicer finish. And do that with all four corners, to then open up the layers and then we’re going to take a layer on each side and bring it up so that we can collapse this down. So slightly pushing on this point perhaps and bringing that up along the existing crease and pushing these layers down, so that a square emerges. And then you want to ensure that there is no wrinkles here, so I’m just going to pull the paper apart, so that you have a nice straight crease here and same on the other side, just taking the 2 corners and pulling the paper carefully. Flatten down completely and then bring in both of the sides along the existing diagonal creases and collapse down. So you’ve done an open sink on one corner and you repeat that on the other three. Then we’re going to flip the model over open two of the petals and lift one layer and push it down as far as it will go, to add a pre-creasing there and you can even pinch these two edges together, as well as here and then press down and add small creases on each side. Then open up and now I’m just going to quickly perhaps open up just one section. You can see here an inverted pyramid and we want to bring the pyramid up, so that it’s pointing upwards rather than down. And there’s two different techniques that I think are really good for this. And the first one is just taking that single layer here and grabbing onto it and then pulling the paper out. So, you can see, just straightening this out, that before you had a pyramid that was pointing down and now it’s pointing up. So you can see here it’s pointing down and there it’s pointing up. Once you have that, you’re just going to go on the side and push together to go along existing creases, to collapse down that petal. So, now you can see you have one of these petals, or half a petal. The second technique is that you don’t pull the paper, but you push it up. So you push exactly on that point of that inverted pyramid, to bring the paper up and that’s exactly, if you go underneath the corner of this square, that’s exactly this point right here. If you push on that, then you can bring the paper up and then you have your pyramid pointing upwards. And then again you can push this together, perhaps straighten out the point and collapse down. It’s a matter of personal preference which technique you like better. I know people that prefer one or the other. I slightly prefer pulling the paper out, but it also depends on the size of the paper and the type of the paper, which technique I will use. So, I suggest you just try out both and then see what works best for you. So here I pulled the paper and for the next one again I’m going to show the pushing of the paper. Always start with adding some pre-creasing, so that it’s easier to invert the pyramid and then you push to get that point of the pyramid to pop up. And once you have that, you can push it together to flatten it. And then you have your next layer prepared and as before, we’re now going to add the pre-creasing, bringing the point to that corner of the two creases from the layer below. And then you can go ahead adding the next layer. We’re going to flip this over again and just for comparison, this is what the model looked like before. You had this large square and now it’s a smaller square which is rotated by 45 degrees. So you can see here it’s basically the same except that it’s smaller now. So we’re again going to start by pre-creasing and bringing the corners to the center. Unfolding all of it and sinking the corners. Then flip over the paper and again lift the layer between two petals, add the pre-creasing and invert the triangles. Now the smaller this gets, the more fiddly it also gets. So if you have a hard time grabbing onto the layers, you can use a tool, for example a simple toothpick and simply go between the layers to loosen them a little, so then it’s easier to grab hold of it. And pull out the layer. Or if it gets really small, you might even use some tweezers and grab hold of the layer and pull it out. So especially when the paper gets really small, you might want to do that, but this size, you know it’s still very manageable without any tools. But I thought I’d share those tips with you too. And of course when you push from the back you can also use a tool, so it should probably be something blunt, so that you don’t actually damage the paper, for example, a chopstick might work. So here you, again, go to that point of the triangle, which you can see right there and if you push on that, when it’s small and with a tool, then it might also be easier and it’s perhaps also easier to get a clean tip right away. And then flatten as before. Now you again add the pre-creasing for the next layer, but let’s just quickly check what this looks like from the back now. So here now you can see there is another smaller square and if you want to add an extra layer, you now sink the corners of that and then proceed. I’m going to stop here. So now, on the last layer you don’t have to unfold the pre-creasing. You can keep it folded, so I just wanted to show you that. So, we’re again bringing it to that intersection and now, because this quite easily unfolds, I’m just going to immediately collapse that layer underneath So you can see here, that layer we’re just going to push it behind and it’s much easier with the pre-creasing in place so that you get a clean finish. And then you can continue with the next one, always folding inside a corner, making a nice strong crease, folding it back to really open that petal and then pushing that paper behind. Again, if you have very small layers, you might want to use a tool. So, using those tweezers again perhaps, you can grab hold onto that layer and you just have to be sure to go on the right layers. So you can see here, you cannot hold onto that layer right there. You have to hold on to the one underneath and then you can push it inside. And again, that’s just extra useful when you’re actually adding many layers. As you can see in this model right here, the layers got much smaller than here. So using tools can be really, really helpful. So again just showing you this. Now if you use tweezers you have to be sure to go between these two layers and then you can twist it behind, like that. And of course, also on the other sides of the petals. And then you proceed with the next layer, just folding behind along the pre-creasing. And then the last layer. You can flip over the model and simply go along the pre-creasing. Really make these creases strong here because the last layer won’t be locked by a next layer Right? So this one might unfold a little more easily but it also helps with that 3D effect of the finished Hydrangea. So, if you like that 3D effect, then you don’t have to make these as strong. Perhaps just tidy this up a little. It’s the back of the model, but still. And then your Hydrangea is all done. Here we’ve added 1, 2, 3, 4 layers. This one has 5 layers: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 And, you know, this one has many more. I think there’s 9. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 But I also used larger paper here (22.75 cm or 9 in). And now that you know how to fold the basic hydrangea, how about you try folding the Hydrangea Ribbon Box, designed by Dasa Severova, or check out Clover Folding designed by Shuzo Fujimoto a stunning variation of this model. I’ve also got a playlist of origami tessellations, which you may enjoy. Subscribe to my channel, so you don’t miss my next videos and finally do check out my website happyfolding.com for more origami content. I hope to see you around, and happy folding!

72 thoughts on “Origami Tutorial: Hydrangea (Shuzo Fujimoto)

  1. I really enjoyed this model, sepecially because you can add more layers as you go instead of deciding how many you want beforehand. Thank you for a(nother) very clear tutorial :):)

  2. where did you get the book from because I looked on amazon and I cant find it and I also looked on origami-shop.com and I couldn't find it

  3. Beautiful — and another excellent tutorial!
    What kind of paper do you use for this? I had some problems with my paper tearing and wearing at the points as I worked through it.

  4. I did it !
    I am still in my first month of folding so it lacks some symmetry but just tiny bits !
    But I did it, … and all thanks to this wonderful tutorial, …
    I loved the swollen paper parts (cubes and pyramids). Magic!
    So thank you Sara for the great tutorial and the great tips !

  5. thank you for posting it ! as you say : it's a better video : clearer and more precise. Thank you very much for your demonstrations !

  6. Thanks for the tutorial! Had great fun making it, I liked the sink folds and the pyramid bits the best 🙂

  7. Could you do a tutorial on high-density hydrangea folding? I can't seem to find instructions anywhere.

    Thanks in advance!

  8. Hello Sara,
    Last summer, in 2014, I started to experiment tesselations. I founded your video of Hydrangea you made in 2007. I never succeded to go to the end of the process. With this new tutorial, it's a complete and more easily version, and I succeded at the first time I try !

    So, I would like to add that your tips about pulling the pyramid (I dislike the pushing behind method) and the use of the toothpick and the tweezer are great ideas !

    I would like to thank you for all the energy you put in crafting such wonderful video. It's a great pleasure to follow them.

  9. ¡Excelente tutorial! El video me ha ayudado satisfactoriamente a plegar este bonito adorno. Tus explicaciones hacen que sea fácil lo que en un principio me parecia complejo. También es un acierto determinante, para mí al menos, el poner los subtítulos en castellano. Gracias por todo ello.

  10. Splendid demonstration ! I LIKE VERY VERY MUCH YOUR WAY TO EXPLAIN DEAR SARA… !Now , I am encouraged to try to fold the Hydrangea box ! It's so beautifull!
    Many thanks
    Claudine from Geneva

  11. thankyou so much for your clear, concise and supremely helpful videos sarah!! I feel like you have been there since the beginning of my origami journey and continue to be an enourmous help!
    keep making these brilliant videos, you deserve every success!!! 🙂

  12. Great video! (as usual)
    I appreciate that you mention creators' names and even get permission from them before posting a video about their models.
    The tips and information you share with us (about paper in general or when you recommend books) are a big help to me.
    Your channel is one of the most interesting and useful about origami.
    For all this, thank you.

  13. hi Sara, this is not tje first time i saw this video. today my husband also want to learn how to fold hydrangea. so we decided to buy the book. may i know the ISBN number of the book?

  14. #myfirst
    probably this is not my very first video that I watched, but it was the first origami that I made from one of yours videos.

  15. This was #myfirst video I saw of yours, and for my first fold, I managed six levels on regular kami.

  16. #cantstop folding the hydrangea. I have folded this piece more than anything else. I have been able to realize almost all of the models in this book. Brilliant art it is and such a joy to recreate. 😀

  17. #myfirst I love this! Always looks beautiful and people are always surprised that you can do this with a square sheet of paper!

  18. #cantstop
    It's a beautiful model and not hard to fold. That's why I made so many of them and I still can't stop folding them.

  19. good morning Sara, would you tell me, please, what kind of paper you are using for your demonstrations? Thank you, Silvia

  20. I gotta say, THANKS A LOT. I´ve been trying like for 3 hours by now and i finally make it. Im studying graphic design and the homework consisted on trying origami technique. I never tried it before. I liked it a lot and your video was SUPER useful. You just saved my homework hahahaha. Cheers from Argentina.

  21. Today I uploaded a video on my YouTube channel about " My Hydrangea origami collection".

    If you have time, please check out my little Hydrangea origami collection video. It's not a great collection but I'm trying to make it better. I learned hydrangea origami from you. 😀 🤗 Thanks for your precious time. 😊

  22. Totally Ripped making the top of the 3rd layer, dang! – I do not recommend making the initial creases to sharp as I believe this is why mine ripped! Will Try again another evening!

  23. Thank you so much for the knowledge! Beginners considering experimenting with foil paper don't try this standard 5×5's, they fray easier. :/ at least they did for me.

  24. Since this is my 2nd try in tesselations and I have no origami paper to try this, I folded only 3 layers. It is very very difficult with no origami paper. I used a sheet of kids drawing paper from a pad I had. One corner ripped while I was pushing up the pyramid to invert it. Luckily it doesn't show! My advice to beginners: use origami paper and the bigger the better for stress-free folding! Thank you so very much for the tutorial and the tips, they really helped me understand the model's structure! 🤗👏🏻🙏🏻💖✨

  25. I came here from another video but I just can't seem to get it, it just doesn't work and I don't know what I did wrong, what do I do?

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