Folding Diagrams for the 4-Leaf Clover (All 36 Steps)

Finished Model Finished Model Designed by Marie Tessier; Diagrams by Marie Tessier and Jasper.

The 4-Leaf Clover is an intermediate model that takes 20-40 minutes to make.
Start with a 1 x 3 rectangle, white side up.
A longer rectangle makes a longer stem.
A shorter rectangle (like a dollar bill) makes a shorter stem.
A 2" x 6" (5 cm x 15 cm) rectangle makes a model 1 ¼ " (3 cm) across x 1 ½ " (4 cm) tall.

The instructions are quite detailed. If they give you any difficulty, please let Jasper know.

Diagrams for steps 1-4.
  1. Start with a (roughly) 1 x 3 rectangle, white side up.
    Valley fold in half (the long way) and unfold.
  2. Cupboard fold. (Valley fold so that the long edges lie along the centerline.)
  3. Cupboard fold again, and unfold.
  4. Pleat into eighths, through both layers.
    The valley folds are on existing creases.
    The mountain folds are new creases.
Diagrams for steps 5-8.
  1. Unfold completely.
  2. (The white side is up.) Make a waterbomb base at the top end of the paper.
  3. Unfold completely.
  4. (The white side is up.) Valley fold the top rectangle downward.
Diagrams for steps 9-12.
  1. Make another waterbomb base at the top end of the paper.
  2. Unfold to Step 9.
  3. Pleat and unfold.
  4. Valley fold upwards.
Diagrams for steps 13-16.
  1. Cupboard fold through all layers, on existing creases.
  2. Valley fold through all layers, on existing creases.
  3. Pull out the corners.
  4. Squash fold.
Diagrams for steps 17-20.
  1. Open out both sides.
  2. Wrap the upper layer around the stem.
  3. Lift and pleat the stem on existing creases.
  4. Finish pleating the stem, including inside the squash folds.
    Raise the stem to be vertical.
Diagrams for steps 21-24.
  1. Fold in both sides. The paper goes underneath the squash folds and the stem.
  2. Valley fold through all layers, on existing creases. (Similar to Step 14.)
  3. Pull out the corners. (Similar to Step 15.)
  4. Squash fold. (Similar to Step 16.)
Diagrams for steps 25-28.
  1. Turn over.
  2. (Stem side down.) Valley fold the corners to the center, while letting the loose paper flip out.
  3. Turn over.
  4. (Stem side up.)
Diagrams for steps 29-32.
  1. (Detail view.) Valley fold.
  2. Wrap the middle layer around the point.
  3. The point is now inside a pocket.
    Valley fold (both the point and the pocket together) back to the center.
  4. The point is locked.
Diagrams for steps 33-36.
  1. (Reduced view.)
    Repeat Steps 29-32 on the other 3 sides.
  2. -35. Round the corners with valley folds
  3. and/or reverse folds.
    Twist and curl the stem.
    Turn over.
  4. The finished 4-Leaf Clover.

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Created by Marie Tessier. Diagrams copyright 1999-2000, 2002-2004
by Marie Tessier and Jasper (aka John Paulsen). Your comments are welcomed.
Last updated October 23, 2004.