Trash Origami: 25 Exciting Paper Models You Can Make with Recycled Trash

Don’t dump your wastepaper into the garbage—it’s time to fold! World-renowned origami artists and award-winning authors Michael G. LaFosse and Richard L. Alexander show you the way with Trash Origami. This origami book presents unique and fun projects from their Origamido Studio and from some of the world’s best paper designers, including Nick Robinson, Herman Van Goubergen, and Rona Gurkewitz.

The origami models are presented for the reader who may have little or no previous folding experience, making it a great origami-for-kids book and an effective way to learn origami. However, experienced paper folders will also be intrigued by the novel nature of the folds and the unusual materials involved. The origami designs are made from old calendar pages, candy wrappers, envelopes, newspaper, postcards, paper grocery bags and more. The accompanying DVD video tutorial will make the folding process clearer and aid folders of all skill levels. Also provided is a guide to everyday materials that have the most folding potential leaving readers inspired to design and display their very own “trash” origami.

This origami book features:

  • Full-color, 95-page instructional book
  • 25 unique origami projects
  • Projects from top paper folding designers
  • Clear, step-by-step directions
  • Paper folding techniques and tips
  • Accompanying instructional DVD

Get ready to look at the contents of your wastebaskets and recycling bins with a different sensibility. You’ll never need to buy expensive origami paper again!


Origami projects include:

  • “Crowns & Towers Game” designed by Michael G. LaFosse
  • “Jumping Frogs” designed by Michael G. LaFosse
  • “Scoopy Ball Game” designed by Michael G. LaFosse and Richard L. Alexander
  • “Flap Cube Cores & Paneled Cubes” traditional design
  • “Photo Cubes” traditional design
  • “Modular Chess & Checkerboard Sets” designed by Michael G. LaFosse
  • “Ali’s Folded Dish” designed by Nick Robinson (United Kingdom)
  • “Masu Boxes” traditional design
  • “Star Box Lids” designed by Richard L. Alexander
  • “Candy Wrapper Butterflies” designed by Michael G. LaFosse
  • “Interlocking Flower Petals” designed by Michael G. LaFosse
  • “Sailboat Envelopes” designed by Michael G. LaFosse
  • “Flapping Bird Envelopes” designed by Michael G. LaFosse
  • “Shuttle Darts” designed by Michael G. LaFosse
  • “Snack Bag Wallets” designed by Michael G. LaFosse
  • “Bag Ballot Boxes” designed by Michael G. LaFosse
  • “Custom-Bound Books” designed by Rona Gurkewitz (USA)
  • “Calendar Wreaths” designed by Michael G. LaFosse, inspired by Paolo Bascetta (Italy) and Mette Pederson (USA)
  • “Curler Unit Balls” designed by Herman Van Goubergen (Belgium)
  • “Paper Hearts” designed by Florence Temko (USA)
  • “Crumpled Mushrooms” designed by Vincent Floderer (France)
  • “Pinwheel Envelopes” traditional design
  • “Dave Brill’s Origami Masu” designed by David Brill (United Kingdom)

Page samples

Origamido Studio, USA


In 1996, Michael and Richard Alexander co-founded the Origamido Studio, a teaching center, gallery and origami design studio where they author publications of their original origami sculptures and make custom, handmade paper for each new creation.

Their works have graced museums worldwide, including: Carrousel du Louvre in Paris; the Arizona–Sonora Desert Museum in Tucson, Arizona; Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens in Delray Beach, Florida; Hangar 7 (Red Bull) in Salzburg, Austria; Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts; Mingei Museum in San Diego, California; and at their own, Origami Do Experience—Waikiki.

Current, traveling exhibitions include Origami in the Garden. Together, they have authored over 70 books and kits about origami and paper arts.

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