Butterfly 3D Paper Picture

A framed set of butterflies

This 3D paper art work can be created very quickly, and will make your home look a little as if it were summer yet, despite the cold outside, and maybe even snow falling.

Tools/supplies you’ll need:
scissors, exacto-knife, ruler, printer, glue, frame, light white cardboard, colorful paper for background
Skills you’ll need:
steady hands, ability to cut very carefully with an exacto-knife

How to proceed:

Enjoy your little paper art work!

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 License.
You may share and adapt the contents, as long as you publish the result under the same license and give appropriate credit.


Margaret Jones

Thank you for sharing your work. I am very new to paper craft so I need all the help I can get. I really like the book folding but like you I wasn’t too keen on the designs (they are very limited) so learning how to do it myself would be awesome. I was also wondering if your butterfly template would work on a ScannCut machine as they accept svg files. Do you think it would?

Thank you

Margaret Jones


Hi Margaret,

it would probably take some more editing before it can be machine-cut.

The things that would need to be done are:

  1. Remove the explanation texts (you don’t want them cut out ;-))

  2. Find out if the machine knows how to prepare for folds (not cuts), as some machines can make just a small ‘scratch’ into the paper’s surface, so it’ll be easier to fold in the exact position. You would need to find out what it needs in the SVG for this (maybe a specific color, line width, or a specific layer name, or a specific name for the creases).

  3. Optimize the paths for cutting. Find out what the machine needs for this. Do you need to label them? Do they need to have a specific line width or color? Is the order of the paths in the document useful, or can you save time by reordering them, so the machine won’t have to jump back and forth so much?

I don’t own a device like that (sigh…), and for every device there are different things that it wants to have in the input file to function properly, so I can’t prepare it in that way.

For editing, I’d suggest to use Inkscape: https://inkscape.org - it also has a couple of extensions that are meant for preparing files for cutting and plotting.

Kind Regards, Maren

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