April 30, 2012

DIY Tissue Paper Flowers

My anniversary is on May 5 (Coming up soon!)

We got married on a Saturday at a pretty little clubhouse where, just hours before our ceremony, there was a Cinco de Mayo party.

And I remember being really concerned that neither sombrero nor salsa bowl be left hanging around for our guests to see.

"It's all going to be put away, right?"

"You're sure?"


Ha. It was lovely, of course.

Now, had the house been filled with tissue paper flowers, I might not have been so anxious. Tissue paper flowers are my favorite. So sweet and cheerful and really easy to make - I bet if you sat down for an hour, you would end up with a pile of them. Here's how.

You'll need: Tissue paper, scissors, and pipe cleaners (garbage-bag twist ties, or a fine gauge wire would work too).

Step 1: Cut your tissue paper into rectangles. For my large flowers - a bit bigger than a grapefruit - I used 8-by-10-inch rectangles. For the smaller ones - about orange-sized - I used 4-by-6-inch sheets. You can experiment - just keep the length and width within a couple of inches of each other.

Step 2: Put together a stack of four rectangles. Make an accordion fold (like folding a paper fan in kindergarten) across the length, with each fold about an inch or inch-and-a-half deep. Try your best to keep things nice and straight here, but no big deal if it's not perfect.

Step 3: Create a crease in the middle of the folded paper and cut out small notches on either side of the center line.

Step 4: Finish the raw edges by rounding them off or cutting them into points, depending on how you want the flower petals to look.


Step 5: Take a 3- or 4-inch length of pipe cleaner, fold it over one notch and twist it around the other. You want this to be secure, but be careful not to rip the paper.

Step 6: Fan out the folds on either side of the pipe cleaner.

Step 7: Gently pull each layer of tissue paper apart and up toward the center. Then arrange the paper until the flower looks the way you want it.

That's it!

To make multi-colored flowers, just layer different colors together before you fold. Here's a hint: A single sheet of green paper on the bottom of the stack will look a little like leaves.

You can arrange the finished flowers in a bowl or basket or tie them to some twine to make a garland.

Or fasten them to a headband, of course.

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