Book Review – Modular Origami Polyhedra

### Modular Origami Polyhedra
**Lewis Simon, Bennett Arnstein, Rona Gurkewitz**

Cover - Modular Origami Polyhedra

Modular origami involves folding several ‘modules’ that are individually quite simple, then joining them together to form a larger origami model that is much more complex. Usually the modules are identical, but even more complexity can be added by varying folds in the modules or mixing different types together.

Modular origami - a wide selection

When it comes to getting started with modular origami, this book is one of the best available. Covering how to build over 35 origami models, there’s plenty for everyone from beginner to expert. There are plenty of illustrations and photos of completed models to make it easy to follow the instructions.

In the introduction, along with the usual legend and terminology, are several useful bits of advice about resizing paper, and details of how to create your own specially shaped sheets. After the basics, there are three main styles of model covered in detail:

**Sonobe modules**

A very simple and satisfying module that produces solid models.

3 Sonobe Modules - Toshie Takahama's Jewel

**Decoration box system**

Very similar folds produce boxes with wildly different appearances, such as this ‘Ninja Star’ cube, with star-shaped holes on each side.

Decoration box variant - 12 module Ninja Star Cube

**Gyroscope modules**

Three- or four-pointed pyramid-like modules that create endlessly complex models. The design shown below isn’t featured in the book, but it’s easy to expand on the basics by combining the modules in different ways.

A complex model made from gyroscope modules

For each style of model, there are many well-illustrated instructions, starting from the basic unit and working up to intricately folded modules that create complex patterns when joined together. At the end of the book there are a few other models that don’t really fit into the previous sections, although they are all fun to fold and look good when completed.

One of the best parts of the book is that it’s essentially open-ended – several of the modules can be joined together in many different ways, and can be combined in big numbers to create incredibly detailed models. Adorning the cover of the book is a chain of 14 linked boxes that form a loop, a very impressive model that requires only simple folds to build.

As I mentioned earlier, there’s something for everyone here, although all models require some precision in your folding, most are quite forgiving of slight misalignments. With a bit of assistance in the assembly stage, quite a few of the designs would be fun to make with children, since the finished model looks much more difficult than it actually is.

More information on Modular Origami Polyhedra at []


Excellent paper robots


How to Make an Origami Ninja Star


  1. Amy


  2. Kristina

    Did you make the models, or are the pics from the book you described. These are gorgeous!!!! I’d like to use the pic of the ninja star cube in a presentation — would that be ok with you? How can I cite you?

  3. Rob

    Kristina, I’ve emailed you about the photos!

  4. Barcode

    hey rob its me barcode how can i make they are beutiful and abstract.
    can you send me the instructions on how to make em thx
    e-mail is [email protected]

  5. Jeffrey

    Can you email me the instructions for the “ninja star cube” please.

  6. omg! this is so koolio i can make allmost anything

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