How to Make Crepe Paper Flowers

comments (6) April 28th, 2010     

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thecrimsonpoppy thecrimsonpoppy, member
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Photo: photos by Rex Barrett for the crimson poppy, (c)2010 the crimson poppy, llc
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- The couple of dollars involved in a fine tip glue applicator is more than worth it.  Control over how much glue goes where, a longer reach into the flower for touch-ups as you work on it, and occasional functioning as a third hand to hold something in place when you're making seven thousand, three hundred and forty two paper flowers for your wedding decorations is a very good thing.

- Crepe paper has nifty stretch and a grain (or "direction") you must consider, but it can be easily shaped.  Tissue paper is a "no" for all three of those things. I like crepe paper for realism and tissue paper for whimsy.

- Look closely at those crepe paper folds you're about to buy. Two things here, and the first is: a) buy FOLDS, not streamers. Yes, streamers are easier to find, and they're sooooo close to the right size, but ... they're not.  I'm never as pleased with my paper flowers if I use them.  Go for the crepe paper folds, even if you have to search online.  

Which leads me to b): the better quality crepe paper you buy, the more petal-like your flowers will be. Fine crepe from Castle in the Air or Blumchen doesn't have the rough, almost knotty texture I see in the folds available in my local craft stores, and it has a huge impact on the final look of my paper flowers.

- Turn the paper, not the scissors. Turn the paper as you're cutting and you'll get smooth edges; turn the scissors instead and you'll find little jags and tears you'll swear up and down you didn't put in there.

- Speaking of cutting, it's 3 layers doublette crepe, 6 layers fine crepe maximum at a time. Yes, I know the article you read online said you can cut up to eight layers of single and four double at one time, and no, I won't be offended that you have to try it a couple of times in hopes you'll get a few extra petals out of the deal even though I advised against it.  I learned the hard way, too. ;)

- A box of tiny binder clips works great to hold your pattern in place; find a balance between too many clippies and not enough clippies.  You'll know you when have too many because the paper not in your hand is so weighted down by clips that it flops over and tugs at the paper you're holding; not enough is obvious because in spite of one lonely clip eleven inches away and the force of your thumb grasping the paper, your crepe paper moves around while you're cutting, leaving you with paper flower petals that resemble abstract seagulls.

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posted in: DIY, how-to, wedding, gift, flowers, tips, paper-flower, crepe paper, helpful hint

Comments (6)

dennisbray writes: I wish there were more photos in this post. It's very detailed and that's what I like about it, but it would have been even better with some photos.
Posted: 7:23 am on September 18th
Amycannon writes: Your artwork is wonderful. I love your website and refer to the great photographs when I make my paper flowers. I've been using cardstock paper and rubbing it with an embossing tool to make it more malleable. But after reading your article, I'm inspired by your use of crepe paper. I'll be purchasing the doublette and fine crepe papers from the online store you mentioned in your article. Thanks for sharing your hints and tips. I can't wait for the upcoming video tutorial!
Posted: 3:44 am on June 6th
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Posted: 2:35 am on May 20th
thecrimsonpoppy writes: thanks, dangermouse013; I'm glad you enjoyed the helpful hints! happy flower-making to you :)

MissyLinda, every flower is different and has its own specific petals. Some people want abstract and a little quirky, others want very realistic flowers, so that makes a difference, too. I'll have a tutorial up before long that I hope you'll enjoy, but in general, I consider the patterns I've created or adapted proprietary. Thank you for the compliment of being interested in them, though! :D You'll find a lot of different flower patterns and how-to's online, especially at YouTube. I made my first paper flower from a pattern at FoldingTrees.com
Posted: 7:47 pm on May 5th
MissyLinda writes: Hello, do you have a pattern for the petals you used ?
Thank you.
Posted: 1:35 pm on May 5th
dangermouse013 writes: This is a fantastic article. I never thought I could take on the paper flower, but this article makes me feel like I've already mastered it.
Posted: 9:26 pm on April 29th
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