Sunday, February 19, 2012

How to Make A Square-Based Pyramid Box

This is a great box for storing homemade materials or just for practice in opening and closing an unusual kind of box. Elementary children can make them as gift boxes or just experiment with different base sizes. I believe this qualifies as kirigami, because it is both paper folding and paper cutting (whereas origami is only paper folding, no cutting). I will try to upload a nice picture soon :)

(follow the directions or just use the template here.)

The Box:
  1. Using a piece of square paper, fold it in half twice to make four squares.
  2. Make a square the size you want your base to be out of a separate piece of paper. The smaller the base, the pointier the pyramid will be; a larger base will create a more squat pyramid. This will make the template for both the base and the square that holds the pyramid together.
  3. Place the small square in the center so that the corners of the small square point at the sides of the larger square. If folded into 4 triangles it will line up with the folds on the larger sheet, and be perfectly centered. Centering is very important.
  4. Trace around the small square. This will be the base of your box. This area should be reinforced before decorating the box if not using a thick material.
  5. Using a straight edge, draw a line from a corner of the small box to the corner of the larger square. Repeat with all cornersthis should result in a long isosceles triangle coming out of each side of the small square.
If using paper or cardstock as your box:
  1. Trace a line parallel to the long sides of each triangle and only a short distance away. This section will be folded in to keep the edges crisp, so in a small box this will be only a few centimeters thick. At the corners of the small square, along the fold, draw a small line out that bisects the thin section.
  2. Cut away the excess paper (the obtuse-angled isosceles triangles along the sides of the large square), and then cut along the small line that bisects the thin section as well. Fold all the other lines.
  3. Trace the small square template again. Glue this piece onto the bottom of the pyramid (inside or outside according to your preference) to reinforce the bottom.
  4. Punch out the circles with a hole punch.
If making the box out of a thick material such as wood, cardboard or plastic:
  1. trace the paper onto the thick material leaving off the thin, folding piece. Cut out the triangles separately from the square and attach with flexible tape before covering with fabric or decorative paper.
  2. Drill a 1/4 inch hole through each circle.
The Closing Square:
  1. Trace the small square from the base of the box. This becomes the outside of the closing square.
  2. Determine how far down from the tip of the box you want the closing square to fall. Measure the width of the triangle at that height.
  3. In the center of thelargesquare, draw a small square with sides the same length as the width of the triangle.
  4. Cut out the small square from the center of the closing square.
  5. If using paper or cardstock, fold in the corners so they meet the inner corners. Fold the sides so they meet the inner sides. Tape or glue the sides in place if desired. If using a thick material, leave the closing square as is, or trim it to the desired size.
The Stick:
  1. Cut a 1/4 inch dowel (or tight roll paper roll) slightly longer than the side of the closing square.
  2. Attach a ribbon or other decoration to the stick if desired.

    I am posting this without having tested the template that I posted (I made one by hand but haven't yet printed the computer one), so if you have any trouble please comment and I will fix any errors or talk you through it more thoroughly. Enjoy!