How to make an origami duck
Make this beautiful origami duck following our step-by-step origami tutorial! Grab a piece of 15 x 15cm paper and fold your own origami duck.
Learn how to make an origami duck with our easy-to-follow step-by-step photo tutorial! This easy origami model captures a duck as he’s splashing around in the pond, or, if you prefer, fold the wings down so that he’s swimming around peacefully, without a care in the world. This model will actually float on water, too!
Like this origami duck? Check out some of our other origami projects here on Gathered, like this origami crane, origami swan, origami owl or origami butterfly.
If you fancy boosting your stash, check out our pick of the best origami paper, or if you’re on the hunt for more easy origami projects, we have them all collated here, in our easy origami for beginners article.
We love seeing what you make, so don’t forget to share your origami projects with us on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter, too!
Buy some beautiful origami paper!
Buy now: £5.63, Amazon
This origami paper pack features eight different bird prints reproduced from Japanese woodblocks in the ukiyo-e style of art, each with a coordinating solid colour on the reverse. The paper is slightly larger, 20 x 20cm, so you can use it for more complicated designs, too. The bird illustrations are gorgeous, and although you only get 48 sheets in a pack, we think it’s worth the money – just look at the mandarin ducks!
How to make an origami duck
Start with a 15 x 15cm piece of square paper. For the purpose of this tutorial, we are using a double-sided sheet of paper which is orange on one side and yellow on the other. Fold in half along the diagonal.
Fold one side of the paper up, leaving a 15mm (1.5cm) pleat at the top.
Fold the paper in half along the vertical and re-open.
Fold one side down to meet the vertical crease you just made in the previous step.
Fold the tip up as shown.
Repeat for the other side – fold the other side down to meet the vertical crease.
Fold the tip up to mirror the other side.
Turn the model over. Fold a small triangle down at the top (about 2cm).
Fold the tip of the triangle up again, making a small pleat. This will be the duck’s beak! This bit may be a little fiddly due to the small size of the beak, so using a cocktail stick may help.
Fold the model in half. Rotate the model 90 degrees anti-clockwise.
Fold the two wings either side up – you can fold them down again later, but we need the wings out the way to make the neck in the next step.
Fold the neck up so that it sits at a 90-degree angle to the body. Open the model up as you fold the neck up, so that there is a piece of neck either side of the body. This is called an outside reverse fold.
Fold the points on the bottom of your origami duck inwards. This will allow your duck to sit up by itself (or float if you decide to put it in water!).
Fold the head down, using another outside reverse fold, so that it is positioned at a 90-degree angle to the neck. The two sides of the head should sit either side of the head.
Manipulate the beak so that it points upwards. To do this, gently pull it into position, then crisp the creases using a bone folder or ruler.
Fold the tail down, so that it lines up with the edge of the wing.
Open up the tail to reveal a square-diamond shape.
Fold the bottom of this square diamond up, aligning the bottom edge with the top edge (i.e., fold in half along the horizontal).
Fold the tail back on itself by folding in half along the vertical.
Pull the tail up and out (go gently), then press the creases to secure in place.
Tidy up your origami duck’s derriere by folding each side inwards.
Finally, fold the wings down (or leave them up if you prefer) to complete your origami duck!
Beautiful origami paper to buy!
1. Handmade origami paper
Buy now: £12.99, Amazon
Okay – so you’ve practised a model, and now you want to make a special one? Perhaps as a gift, or to make a topper on the front of a card? Well, this handmade paper is perfect for when you want to create something a little more special.
2. Double-sided origami paper
Buy now: £8.54, Amazon
This is the origami paper we used for the steps photos – it’s great, because not only is it double-sided, but the sides are different colours so it really adds a little bit extra to those designs where you see both sides of the paper. Plus it comes as loose leaf, which is handy.
3. Traditional origami paper
Buy now: £6.39, Amazon
This pack of origami paper comes in traditional designs with a great price point. There are 24 different designs and 100 sheets. They’re double-sided, too so if you’re looking to get into the hobby without splashing too much cash – this is a great option.
4. Botanical origami paper
Buy now: £6.11, Amazon
This collection of botanical-inspired origami paper features beautiful designs of leaves and feathers in a palette of greens and blues. We love the peacock feathers! If you want more peacock inspired prints, why not download our free peacock pintables – just be sure to cut into squares before folding this origami duck.
5. Metallic origami paper
Buy now: £7.57, Amazon
This metallic collection of origami papers features 10 different colours, with a pearly, iridescent finish. For simple designs this paper is great – and we think this paper would look great for our origami duck!
We hope you’ve enjoyed this tutorial, how to make an origami duck. We have plenty of other origami projects here on Gathered, too – like this traditional origami crane, this origami owl or these adorable (and super easy) origami cats.