Skip to content

Samurai Hat – Origami Design

Ever since I started posting pictures of origami pieces populating my world on Instagram, I have been quite fascinated by this origami samurai hat model. And when I had to create a large life-size piece of head-gear to wear on my about page, this robust design seemed the appropriate and attractive piece for the task. The beauty of it is that its very strong structure and interesting interplay of surfaces make it work at a variety of sizes, so it deserved some good origami instructions, Papernautic style.

Origami samurai hat resting on the head of a small dodo statuette


I’ve made this model with tiny square note paper which was perfect for my finger, and using large spliced-together IKEA drawing-roll paper for a wearable size. The model is really quite flexible and versatile, and will work with almost any paper that is thin enough to fold and tuck as required. I suppose you could quite easily make a life-size version using a broad-sheet newspaper to try it out too. For the purpose of these instructions, I used my standard stack of coloured origami paper, both easy to fold and easy to see in the pictures.


Step 1

Step 01 - Samurai hat - origami steps
The origami sheets I have are coloured only on one side, so to allow the final model to show the maximum colour, I started the folding on the white side. Double sided, varying colour paper would be quite beautiful with this model. First order of business is to fold it along a diagonal to create a crease.

Step 2

Step 02 - Samurai hat - origami steps
Fold the bottom corner of the square towards the top, but not in half along the diagonal. Create a crease that horizontal but a little below the diagonal as shown.

Step 3

Step 03 - Samurai hat - origami steps
The result should look like this. A triangular frame of sorts. Now flip the paper over to work on the other side.

Step 4

Step 04 - Samurai hat - origami steps
Fold the base upwards to create a new parallel crease, this time above the diagonal.

Step 5

Step 05 - Samurai hat - origami steps
And you should get something that looks like this. Already starting to look like a flat version of kids paper hat. No flip the model again to the other side.

Step 6

Step 06 - Samurai hat - origami steps
The right half of this triangle now needs to be folded in half along the angled crease, taking the right corner up to the top corner along the vertical central crease.

Step 7

Step 07 - Samurai hat - origami steps
That will look like this. And you need to repeat a symmetrical fold on the left side now.

Step 8

Step 08 - Samurai hat - origami steps
Fold the left flap down in half along the horizontal line.

Step 9

Step 09 - Samurai hat - origami steps
Repeat the same fold on the right side and once you do, rotate the model 180 degrees so that the bottom pointing flaps are now pointing up.

Step 10

Step 10 - Samurai hat - origami steps
Fold the two top flaps away from the centre along the slanted lines shown to for the ears-like motif of the hat.

Step 11

Step 11 - Samurai hat - origami steps
The smaller bottom flap is now folded upwards, but along a line lower than the middle of the model.

Step 12

Step 12 - Samurai hat - origami steps
The section of the small lower flap that remains below the central horizontal line is now folded up on top of the previous fold.

Step 13

Step 13 - Samurai hat - origami steps
This is what you should have,a d now flip it over to work on the other side.

Step 14

Step 14 - Samurai hat - origami steps
Fold the left and right corners to the middle line along vertical creases.

Step 15

Step 15 - Samurai hat - origami steps
Fold the entire model upwards in half along the horizontal, tucking the bottom corner into the small pocket formed at the top of the hat shape.

Step 16

Step 16 - Samurai hat - origami steps
Tuck it in till it’s flat and flip the model to see the front face.

Step 17

Step 17 - Samurai hat - origami steps
The hat is now essentially done in flat form.

Step 18

Step 18 - Samurai hat - origami steps
To make it a three dimensional, rigid structure, open up the mouth of the hat at the bottom, and pinch the top flat from the sides.

Samurai hat - finished origami model
Your very handsome looking samurai hat is now ready to adorn, fingers, toys and any other willing models you have at your disposal.

Try this one out, for the kid in you and any actual kids you may have around to impress and please. Unlike many paper hat models I have seen, this one really has a clean design and a certain heft to the structure. It will please the discerning kid, whatever their age, no end.

If you do make one, show me online. Tag me on Twitter or Facebook. I’m always glad to see some origami instructions brought to fruition. Have a good day. *Tips hat and bows.