Tuesday, July 14, 2009

DIY PITA paper wedding flowers* part 1

*subtitle: if someone had written this post before I got it in my head to imitate Karl Lagerfeld, it would have saved me a ton of time...

You can find part 2 here and part 3 here.

Remember all those giant paper flowers? How they were so giant and were so many of them after my non-bridal-shower party? The deal is that I had totally loved the look of the Chanel spring fashion show when I saw this picture on folding trees:and I decided that it would be super cool to try to approximate it for a sort of backdrop at our wedding. Karl Lagerfeld designed this show, and he has some serious minions to do the dirty work, but I was doing it on a much smaller scale. I don't have minions, but I do have friends, so instead of a bridal shower, I had a flower-making party.

Before the party, I spent quite a bit of time online trying to find paper flower tutorials. It's pretty easy to find instructions for making tissue-paper flowers. It's harder to find instructions for more elegant paper flowers. These are the ones I found worthy of bookmarking but didn't actually use:

Rosie has a video tutorial for making simple-looking flowers with construction paper and other kids' craft supplies
If you're going for more of an origami look, with fewer rounded edges and less cutting, oriland is the place to go (especially once you feel the energy and magic!)
Beautiful, colorful rice paper flowers seem pretty easy to make.
This rose looks more complicated than the ones we did, but you can download the template from the same place I got my daisy template.
Here's a photograph that I found inspirational but frustrating, since there are no instructions and I couldn't find a pattern anywhere on the web.
OMgosh, these "flirty" flowers are beautiful, but they really are NOT simple, even with step by step instructions and photographs. I knew that I could never teach people how to do them in just a few minutes.
If you want to extend the paper flower idea to your cake, craftstylish can show you how.
I tried making paper roses from this flikr tutorial (look at the slide show, and it shows you step by step) but mine came out looking lame and like they were made by a kindergartner, not elegant and sophisticated like hers did.
Folding trees has a kusudama tutorial to make a pretty flower ball. I actually think it would have been fun to make these huge and use them instead of poufs or paper lanterns, but it would take way longer.
The author of this tutorial calls them butterfly kusudama, but I think these just look like daffodils. I didn't try them, but they look much harder than the kusudama in the link above.
I made a prototype of this one from Martha Stewart before the party. I didn't think it was realistic enough to fit in with the others on the backdrop, but I thought about making some to hang in the reception hall, along with the poufs.
I also thought about making some paper bouquets from a tutorial I found at diy wedding on craftstylish:
In the end, the backdrop flowers and poufs were all we could handle -- no time for extras!

I settled on three styles:

daisy magnolia and rose
The instructions for the daisy are from the Canon website. Weird, I know, but I guess they'll do anything to get you to use more printer ink. They tell you to print out pages in color, then cut and glue. Instead, I printed the pages in grayscale, enlarged each part of the pattern, then we used the enlarged copy as a template to cut the pieces out of white paper. We didn't bother with the stem or calyx.

A friend of my mom sent us one giant magnolia, plus a kit with pattern and paper for another. We used that pattern to make the rest of the magnolias.

Here are the directions I used for the roses. She uses a 6-sided flower punch, but that obviously wasn't going to be big enough, so I cut the biggest 6 sided flower shape that I could from an 81/2 X 11 piece of paper and used that. This made a rose that was about four or five inches in diameter. The ladies at the party enlarged it even further, to make roses that were closer to a foot wide.

Counting me, I think there were 14 of us working on the flowers. A few people stayed for just a little while, and a few stayed for several hours, but it probably averaged out to 14 crafty women working for 2-3 hours each. You may remember that I was so excited at the results -- it seemed like my whole house was taken over by giant paper flowers.

Coming up on Party of Six...Assembling the backdrop.


Rachael said...

Paper wedding flowers are really a popular trend lately. Yours are superb. I can't wait to see the back drop that you are doing.


seppie said...

Thanks for the compliment! I had no idea when I decided to do it that it was a trend, but you are absolutely right. I've seen lots of pretty paper bridal bouquets, but nothing on quite the scale that we did...

Caroline said...

These are soooo gorgeous! Love them!

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Rosemary said...

Great post.!! Thank you so much for linking.. I will certainly try to make some paper flowers my own.

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