With Spring a mere 7 days away, I’m more in the mood for colorful blooms then cozy knits. My paper flower love affair all started with this pin of some fantastic Coffee Filter Flowers via the always inspirational Design Sponge and led me down the rabbit hole of paper flower pinning all of which you can see on my aptly named Stuff to DIY board.
So I started with the coffee filter flowers but I did a few things a little differently. I felt like I wanted to do something different than using paint to to dye the coffee filters, I thought about it for a moment and decided food coloring would probably work wonderfully instead of paint. It totally worked, I think my dyed version turn out pretty darn well.
There’s 3 different types of paper flowers in my bouquet, Paper Peonies original tutorial here, Rolled Rosebuds original tutorial here and Poppies my own take on some of the general tutorials I found. I’ll detail each one below so you can see what I did similarly to the original tutorials and what I found worked for me that’s different. Shall we get crafting our own paper flowers?
- 60 coffee filters
- Yellow and red concentrated gel food coloring
- 3 bowls
- Wood floral picks
- Green floral wire
- Green Floral Tape
- Brightly colored tissue paper
- Black tissue paper
The paper peonies are gorgeous on their own and probably the most time consuming of the three that I tried. If you get an assembly line going they’ll go quicker. The results are stunning and worth the time.
To start dying your coffee filters you’ll need a whole boatload of coffee filters, 60 to be exact, 3 bowls and food coloring in yellow and orange. I used the concentrated gel kind which I found in the cake decorating section of Michaels craft store.
In each of the three bowls place 1 cup of warm water. In the first bowl add equal parts yellow and red food coloring until you get a nice deep orange color. In the second bowl of water add 2 parts yellow to 1 part red food coloring. In the third bowl add only yellow food coloring.
Following the original instructions via Design Sponge I placed 10 coffee filters in the darkest color, 20 in the mid-range color and 30 in the yellow. Let them set for a few minutes, the longer they sit in the dye bath the more vibrant each of the colors will be.
Once I was satisfied with the color I removed the coffee filters and wrung out the excess water. Then I separated each filter and left them out to dry. Just FYI they’re pretty slopping and ugly looking when wet.
Tip: to speed drying you could use a hair dryer set on low or hang them in front of a fan.
Once they were all dry I sorted the stacks by color then separated 10 to a stack. You should have 1 stack of the deepest color, 2 stacks of the medium color and 3 stacks of the lightest color. Next fold them in half and then in quarters, into a pie shape. Cut the rounded edges, more jagged cuts into the deepest color graduating to shallow almost rounded cuts into the lightest color coffee filters. Finally make a small snip in the pointed end so that there will be a small whole the center of your filter.
Here’s where my version differed a little again, I used wooden flower picks instead of straw for the stems of my flowers. I liked how the picks had floral wire at the top of each pick which made attaching the petals to the stem easier than using the masking tape and straws method suggest in the tutorial.
I selected 1 of the darkest dyed coffee filters folded it up in the middle twisted the based and attached it directly to the wood pick, winding the wire tightly to secure it to the wood pick.
Then I placed 1 of the medium dyed filters, sliding it onto the pick through the hole I cut in the center, then crimp around the wooden stick and attach with floral wire. Then I repeated for 1 more medium dyed filter and 3 of the lightest dyed filters.
In total I had 1 dark filter, 2 medium filters, and 3 of the lightest filters wired to your wooden pick. Then I wrapped the whole stick in green floral tape to cover the wires and entire wooden stick. Repeat for each paper peony, when I was done I had 10 full flowers.
The paper peonies were gorgeous, I almost want to kiss the original person who though of this because they’re that pretty and addicting to make.
Once the peonies were complete I decided some pops color in the bouquet would be a nice touch. The hot pink flowers are cut and rolled to make small rosebud flowers. They were so simple and far less time consuming than the peonies. I think the combination is stunning.
The rolled rosebuds are infinitely more simple when compared to the paper peonies, but none the less gorgeous.
Start by cutting a strip of tissue paper about 3 inches wide from the short side of your piece of tissue paper. Roll the long end in approximately 2 inch segments the entire length of your tissue paper. Cut one end of the paper rounded and unfold
Start crimping back and forth accordion style scrunching up the center of your flower to form the tight bud, then continue to roll the entire length
Attach to a floral wood pick with wire, wrap the entire base of the rose bud and stem with green floral tape to secure and finish.
The poppies are a hybrid version of the paper peonies it’s similar principle but different materials and much different results. I think they play nicely in combination with the other flowers.
For the petals, start by tracing and cutting out 3 circles onto your sheet of tissue paper. Stack the circles together and fold into quarters creating a pie shape. Cut the rounded end of the pie shape so that the ends are wavy. Snip just the tip of the point to create a hole in the center of your tissue paper circle.
Cut a small square out of your black piece of tissue paper. Place a small ball of tin foil in the center, wrap around the top of your floral pick and secure with wire.
Place 1 piece of your now cut petal rounds onto the wood floral pick through the center hole you snipped in the first step.
Crimp your tissue paper petal onto the floral pick securing with green floral wire, repeat for 2 more petals. Wrap the entire wood stick including the wired base of the petals in green floral tape to secure tightly.
I have to say these turned out soooo much better than I expected. I’ve had to explain to everyone who has walked in the house that they were made from scratch by me and not flowers stems I bought and put in the vase. I’m a little stupid giddy over them and I’m tempted to pet them lovingly each time I walk into the room.
There’s so many possibilities for these paper flowers, like create a few and set them into everyone’s glass for a dinner party or create a fun center piece, decorate for a party and even make them into napkin holders with a little modification. The possibilities are endless.