I made a couple tangram sets out of thick scrapbooking paper. I felt the pieces were too light, so I filled them 3/4 full with rice. I’m not sure if the rice will spoil and if I did it again I would use a non- food product like plastic beads or stuffing pellets.
This particular paper model is simple enough to understand with limited direction referencing. You can find the free printout at Shelia’s Papermodels. The set even includes a few pages of puzzles to assemble into a leaflet. She has some challenging models too, like a medieval trebuchet. I plan to make the 18 page chess set when I have more ink in my printer!
Check the Tutorials page to learn how to make templates for this and other simple paper models. This not only saves on ink, but allows you to choose you own size and color paper. This also a great technique for die cuts for scrapbooking and kids school projects.
Looking for more free paper models? There are tons of them out there on the world wide web. This is a list of a few I have bookmarked:
The Toymaker has whimsical illustrated models appropriate for beginners and children.
For famous architecture, animals, seasonal items and a completely fictional town complete with cars, building, trains, etc visit CreativePark.
Girl Gamers Unite has a list of sweet little paper Mario characters.
Alternatively, try Ninjatoes for other Nintendo characters and a few Star Trek spaceships.
And for you Trekkies out there with a few paper models under your belt, build replicas of various starship bridges at The Lower Hudson Valley Challenger Center Paper Model Egiftshop (whew!).
If models aren’t for you, send a friend a snail mail pop up greeting card from Robert Sabuda.