I'm so excited I got another DIY project done that I thought I'd post pictures of the finished flowers and show you all how I did them.
The DAY I finished my Kusudama flowers two weeks ago
, I went to my local art store (literally a block from my house), and I bought 70 12"x12" sheets of cardstock in the blue and green, which I then cut into 280 6"x6" sheets using the paper cutter at work. I also bought a 200 sheet multi pack of 8x8 cardstock
, of which I used probably 140 sheets. I also bought 50 sheets of purple construction paper, which I cut into 9"x9" sheets. And later on, I bought two packs of 50 sheet multi colored cardstock (similar to these
, but in peacock colors), which I used 80 8.5"x8.5"sheets. (The unused stock didn't go with my color schemes, so I'll probably make more flowers later to give to my mom and sisters if for some reason we don't have any left over after the wedding.) So I guess, it's about 550 flowers.
I had seen these flowers around on pinterest and on other sites, and I thought they looked a) pretty, and b) fairly easy to make. Both turned out to be the case. It was pretty easy, and I got into a rhythm pretty easily. It took me about two weeks from start to finish, stopping at Michaels for cardstock and wire at about halfway through.
I'll use these on my tables. Half will get the Kusudama flowers, and the other half will get these, with some lavender sprigs, in glass vases. I don't think I could be happier with the results. I'm thinking that the arrangements of these flowers will be in multicolored bouquets. But I separated them currently according to color. I have a large rubbermaid bin that I'll store them in until the wedding.
Look!! They're so pretty!
Draw a spiral on a square piece of paper. I used three different sizes and several colors. At first, I was all anal about getting my circles perfect, but after awhile, I realized that irregularity added some texture to the flowers, and in this case, it's better to be perfect than not. In the middle, you just keep on cutting, but do NOT trim off the last bit: that is what keeps the flower together.
Cut out the spiral. I just used the lines as a guide. Pretty soon, I was able to cut several pieces at once. By the end, I could cut out a spiral without having to draw out anything.
You end up with a long piece of paper that spirals on itself.
Starting at the outside, tightly wind the flower into itself. I found that the tighter I wound, the more likely the flower was to stay together when I let it go.
And you let go! The flower pretty much holds its shape without any outside help. You could easily stop here, and end up with dozens of really pretty flowers that you can throw all over your tables or in other places that need decor. Or you could glue them to a wreath, picture frame, or other flat surface that needs help.
I decided I wanted them on stems, though. At first I glued completed flowers onto the wires, but I found myself recreating the flowers, and the below method was the most time efficient way of making the flowers with stems. I found it most efficient to pre-cut the paper, pre-cut the stems, and then assemble.
I bought 2 pounds of 22 gauge floral wire from Michaels and cut it out to about one foot lengths.
A dab of glue on the end of the spiral strip.
Press the wire onto the glue. Make sure that the wire is aligned so the top of the stem is on the outside edge of the spiral.
Start twisting in, around the wire. Again, it's useful to be tight. And the wire helps a little on the twisting because you have more than just the paper to hold on to.
More and more twisting.
Keep rolling until you get to the end. There's a point where the tail of the spiral will stop. The wire can neatly tuck into that little groove.
Let the flower open in your hand. I just stuck the wire between my fingers and let go. The wire will twist a little, so make sure nothing is in the way.
Add a dab of glue to the very bottom layer of the paper. Press the edges of the paper in to the glue. It may be still hot, so be care ful of your fingers.
And your flower (once you've trimmed the glue) is done! I got to the point that after cutting out paper and wire, I could do about 20 flowers in the course of an hour long TV show (fast forwarding through commercials).
I put 20 in a cluster together. 20 seemed like a natural clustering for these particular flowers, because there were 40 per section (I bought a pack of 10 pieces of 12 inch cardstock and cut them down) . They are the smallest of the flowers I've made at 6 inches square. Eventually, I'll mix and max colors and sizes for the actual bouquets that go on tables.
I twisted the wires together to make a bouquet.
And they're done! I'm keeping them in a large rubbermaid bin for transport and so they don't get crushed. I am hopeful that my guests will take some with them!
Tags: making things, pictures, wedding