How to Make Crepe Paper Carnations
Imaginative Crafts, Do-It-Yourself Projects and Video Tutorials by Robert Mahar, robert-mahar.com
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18” 26 gage floral wire stems (thin)
18” 18 gage floral wire stems (thick)
*Online source for crepe paper: https://www.castleintheair.biz/shoppe/?b=10&k=10&c=138
1) Measure and cut (across the grain) a 3” x 30” strip of crepe paper using a pair of pinking shears. This strip of paper will become the flower petals. Lay the strip of paper on your work surface and using the flat palms of your hands stretch the strip of paper out to 34”.
2) Fold the strip of paper in half 3-4 times. Measure 1” up from the bottom edge and draw a light guideline in pencil. Using a sharp pair of standard scissors create a series of cuts every 1” to 1 1/2”, cutting from the zig zag edge (created by the pinking shears) down to the pencil guideline. Unfold the strip of paper to reveal all of the individual petals.
3) Starting at one end of the strip, accordion fold each petal – folding the paper back and forth every 1/8th of an inch. These accordion folds do not need to be perfect – they simply add texture and mimic the natural ruffles of a live carnation.
4) Bend an 18 gage floral wire stem in half. Beginning at one end of the crepe paper strip, gather together the first three to four petals and then place the bent floral wire stem over the strip and between the next two petals. Continue pinching and gathering the entire strip of crepe paper around the floral wire stem.
5) Bend a 26 gage floral wire stem in half, wrapping it around the base of the bloom. Position it 1/2” from the bottom of the bloom and twist the two ends of the floral stem together tightly. Wrap the two end around to the opposite side of the bloom and twist them together several more times, binding the flower together. Allow the two tail ends of the 26 gage floral wire stem to hang down – they will be incorporated into the heaver 18 gage stem of the flower.
6) Measure and cut (across the grain) a 2” tall strip of green crepe paper using a pair of pinking shears. Wrap the strip around the base of the bloom, cutting the length of the strip just long enough to wrap all the way around. Use a toothpick to apply a small amount of tacky glue along the wire wrapped around the base of the bloom. Position one end of the zig zag edge of the green paper strip 1/8” above the glue-covered wire and press into place. Using a little bit of tension, wrap the strip around the bloom, apply glue along the open end and press into place.
7) The strip of green paper will extend down beyond the bottom of the bloom. Gather this excess paper together and pinch it in towards the stem.
8) Using a standard pair of scissors, cut 2-3 green crepe paper strips measuring 1/2” tall by approximately 5”-6” in length. Apply glue to one end of the strip and position it over the paper gathered together below the bloom. With a little bit of tension, wrap the strip around the gathered paper, securing it in place. Then changing the angle of the strip slightly downward, begin wrapping the strip down the stem. Twist the stem with one hand while hold and wrapping the crepe paper strip with the other. When you reach the end of the strip, apply a small amount of glue and secure it in place. Apply a second strip of paper in the same fashion and continue wrapping all the way down the stem, securing in place with small amount of glue.
9) Create leaves by cutting two strips of green crepe paper approximately 1/2” wide by 5” tall. Fold these two strips in half – cut the ends into a point and then and cut at the fold, creating four leaves. Apply a small amount of glue to the base of one leaf, position it on the stem, wrapping it around and pressing it into place. Adhere a second leaf in the same fashion position it directly opposite the first. Apply the second set of leaves in the same fashion.
10) Curl the leaves by gently running the closed blades of a standard pair of scissors along the underside of each leaf.
11) Fluff up the petals of the bloom by gently pull them away from the center of the flower, creating a bloom as full as you’d like.
• The flowers in the video were created using a double-sided German crepe paper known as Doublette. It comes in a wide range of color combinations and can be purchased here: https://www.castleintheair.biz/shoppe/?b=10&k=10&c=138
• Create a bouquet of these flowers to brighten up your home, decorate for en event or to give as a gift!