Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the lights on at MakeUseOf. Read more.
Whether you’re bored at work, like to stimulate the nostalgia, or just love to craft, paper modelling is a real fun way for you or your kids to waste time.
Though it might seem like a somewhat childish hobby, there are really many kinds of papercraft, varying in theme and difficulty.
A lot of different papercraft guides and how-to’s are available on the net. Most of these services offer pre-printed lay-outs. This means you’ll just have to cut and paste to create a unique and original looking model or toy.
We’ll be discussing the more authentic forms of papercraft, like origami, but you’ll also learn how to fold block-headed celebrities from popular movie and game franchises. So four great papercraft websites:
Origami is the Japanese branch of papercraft. It has been around for hundreds of years and is not planning to go away. Origami uses one or several square pieces of paper, each side in a different color. Only folding is allowed (those gluesticks and scissors won’t be needed), but the possibilities are endless.
Michael LaFosse started a website with fourteen simple and advanced origami types. Each how-to is accompanied by a video, which explains and shows you the process, step by step.
This accessible Popular Origami website is great to get a basic taste of the origami art.
Remember those block-headed famous figures I showed in the intro? Say hello to Cubeecraft.
Cubeecraft hosts tons of easy-to-make blocky figures, ranging from Usagi Yojimbo to The Joker. You just have to print the stencils, cut them out and fold them. That’s right, no glue needed either!
From time to time, more Cubees are added. Besides the normal stencils, Cubeecraft also publishes temporal Limited Edition themes, only for those who are quick enough.
Other cube figures can be found on Readymech, a side-project of the Fwis graphical design firm.
These papercraft models do not resemble any popular franchise characters, but are all of very unique and original designs. To make these models you will need a pair of scissors, glue or double-sided tape and a printer.
This is not a site which hosts guides and/or stencils, but nevertheless one that just had to be mentioned.
Creative Closeup composed a list of “100 Exceptional Free Paper Models and Toys”. These include some of the most advanced pieces of papercraft I’ve ever seen.
Instead of just folding five or six lines, you’ll create immensely detailed papercraft models. These include a motorcycle (released by Yamaha), where you need to separately manufacture the tank, the frame and even the exhaust pipe!
If you’re tired with the cube figures and up for a (serious) challenge, this is a must-try!
So what do you think? Are you for the traditional, popular or insane approach? Maybe you have some nostalgic memories about paper crafting, or you might know other (maybe even better) sites. Let other people know by leaving a comment below.