Posts tagged project
DIY Paper Floral Ring
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I thought I would share with you how I made this large floral ring window display which I installed at The Paper Place, so that if you decide you want to make one to, you'll have a head start. So here's my DIY Paper Floral Ring tutorial.Here's how I did it:The first challenge was to determine the size of the DIY paper floral ring so that it would fit comfortably within the large window that was 93 inches wide by 90 inches tall. I calculated that there should be about 1 foot space between the ring and the window frame. So I decided to create a ring with a diameter of 5 feet, accounting for the ring to be a little larger in the end because there would be leaves and flowers extending outside of the ring structure.The second challenge was to create a round structure that could be transported easily. I knew it would have to be broken down into smaller pieces so that it could fit into my car. With a diameter of 5 feet, each half would be about 2.5 - 3 feet wide by 5 - 6 feet long, which was small enough to be easily placed into my car, with the backseats down. I initially considered using PVC piping, the type that plumbers use and the type that many paper floral artists use as stems for their larger than life flowers. But as I was exploring the different options at the hardware store, I realized that the disadvantage of the PVC piping was that I would need to use a heat gun to create the round shape I wanted. I would have to use a guide to make it. While looking at the other pipings, I came across flexible PVC tubing from the electrical section, these electrical PVC conduits. It was super flexible and easily shaped. I knew that if I had 2 pieces of the same length, and connected them together, it would automatically create a round shape because of the tension between the two pieces and the flexibility of the tubing to permit that. I bought 2 coupling connectors. I could easily push the ends of the conduits into the couplings to connect them; to disconnect them, I just had to pull them out of the couplings. To finish, I sprayed painted them in Krylon green spray paint.The third challenge was to hang the DIY paper floral ring while I worked on it. I initially tried to hang it on my Pax wardrobe, but I needed access to my art supplies, so it didn't work. I have a metal shelf from IKEA that I use to hold my paints, tools etc. and random household items. I used 18" zip ties to tie 2 short metal bars to the top of the shelf, with at least 5 inches protruding out from the top of the shelf. I then attached fishing wire to the ring at 10 o'clock and 2 o'clock, and hung them from the 2 metal bars. I had to adjust the positions several times, and as I worked on the paper floral ring, to keep the ring circular. At some point, the paper floral ring was heavy enough that the bottom of the ring at 6 0'clock was dragging. So I tied fishing wire to the bottom at 6 o'clock, and threaded that through the top of the ring at 12 o'clock, and then attached it to the top of the shelf. I tightened the fishing wire until the bottom of the DIY paper floral ring was no longer sinking, and the DIY paper floral ring was round again.The fourth challenge was to find a way to easily attach the leaves and flowers to the actual DIY paper floral ring. I created a cage around the ring using chicken wire. I cut strips of it, the length of each section of the electrical PVC conduit, and width of it about 6 hexagons. I curled it around the conduit tubing and attached it using zip ties. When I got to the sections where the couplings connected the tubes, I attached the chicken wire frame tightly around one side, and loosely on the other side so that the loose side could easily cup around the tight side. https://youtu.be/azFwKsiV138Once the chicken wire cage was secured, I was able to insert the leave stems into the cage. I secured the stems by wrapping them around the chicken wire. I tried to do this as much as possible. In areas where I couldn't do this, I used a short stem wire, in a 26 gauge, to tie the stem to the chicken wire. Here's 2 short video demonstrations, one using the leaf's stem wire, and one using a separate stem wire:https://youtu.be/9CmINB6JP6ohttps://youtu.be/dGP0l8FvuLcI worked on the paper floral ring by first attaching the leaves, and then the magnolia branches. I continued to installed the flowers and leaves as I made them.   https://youtu.be/4h_evH4XKQII experimented with different types of flowers and colours, and finally decided to stick with the white and blush, to reflect the colours and weight of the magnolias.Once everything was attached, I sprayed all of the foliage and flowers with 2 layers of Krylon K01305 Gallery Series Artist and Clear Coatings Aerosol, 11-Ounce, UV-Resistant Clear Gloss.Here's the final installation at The Paper Place.https://youtu.be/hJurBYi_cO0Let me know if you have any questions at all! This was my way of solving the problem of a large wire structure - there are probably many other more efficient and effective ways.~ Jessie***DISCLOSURE: Just to let you know, sometimes my blog posts contain affiliate marketing links. If you make purchases via the links I've provided, I receive a small commission which costs you nothing, but do help to support my website/maintenance and fees. . You can read my full Disclosure statement here ***

Paper Floral Garden Rose Workshop
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I'm back at the Aurora Cultural Centre on April 28th to teach a course on making crepe paper flowers. Last year, I had a blast! It was wonderful to meet ladies of every age and experience. I was so astonished to learn that so many of them did not live anywhere near Aurora and had in fact travelled across the province to attend my workshop.In this Paper Floral Garden Rose Workshop, we will be making my version of a floribunda rose called Distant Drums, using doublette crepe from The Paper Place.The class will be from 10 am to 3 pm on April 28, 2018. The cost is $75 (HST included) per student payable at the time of registration, plus a $15 material fee payable to the instructor (that's me) at the beginning of the class. Since the class will run though lunch time, I suggest you bring a lunch/snack to keep you energized. Also, please bring a pair of sharp scissors.Registration just opened today! You can register over the phone (905-713-1818) or in-person. See here for more details.Hope to see you there!Jessie

Garden Wildflower Paper Flower Bouquet

For the last several weeks, I have been working on a garden wildflower paper flower bouquet for a special client, Linda, of Facci Designs. She has been an enthusiastic supporter of my work from day one, so when she commissioned me to create a bouquet, I was eager to impress her.We talked about what she intended the bouquet to be used for (a year-round arrangement for her Airbnb cottage in Woodstock, New York), where she wanted to put it (on the fire mantel), what flowers she wanted in the bouquet (flowers from her garden or flowers that she liked), and the colour theme (she liked my "Study in Purple" post on Instagram of a purple ombre bouquet). In the end, she left most if not all of the decisions regarding flowers and colours and size to me, and I had pretty much free reign in the design of the bouquet. Such luxury! I love it when my clients know my work + style and completely trust me to make a bouquet or arrangement of their dreams.For this particular bouquet, I envisioned flowers that looked like they were freshly picked from Linda's garden. I wanted this garden wildflower paper flower bouquet to look loose, wild, natural and whimsical. I am really inspired by the new floral arrangement styles of Sara Winward, Alicia & Adam Rico of Bows and Arrows, and Ariella Chezar, so I took what I loved from their styles and tried to apply them to Linda's bouquet. This was the perfect bouquet to experiment with this floral style.Here's the recipe for this garden wildflower paper flower bouquet:

  • 6 white cosmos
  • 6 light purple cosmos
  • 6 pink cosmos
  • 7 chocolate cosmos
  • 9 Mardi Gras plum shade hellebores
  • 2 white double-petal peonies
  • 2 purple hydrangeas
  • 4 burgundy dahlias
  • 9 white anemones
  • 2 lilacs
  • 6 blue-purple clematis with vines
  • 4 hosta leaves
  • 3 green ferns and 2 burgundy ferns
  • 5 boston ferns
  • 4 lilac leaf stems

...Clearly, I have a weakness for using a lot of flowers and foliage in my bouquets!For this bouquet, I used a 1L mason/ball jar as the vase. I have been using mason jars as bases because it's a DIY vase that anyone can buy inexpensively. I either use a small (500 mL) or large (1L) jar. I find that size of the vase naturally dictates how many stems I might need to make the bouquet look "full".I usually start off with a general idea of what type of flowers and colours I want to use and then I mix and match colour with flower. I start by making the focus flowers, or the larger flowers, and placing each flower into the vase I am using and building from there. Once I think I am about 50% complete, I take what I have apart and re-arrange the stems, looking for spots in the arrangement for where transition pieces are required. Sometimes, I won't know what transition pieces I want to use from the start, so it's at this point that I'll look for inspiration and brainstorm. Lately, I've often turned to hellebores because they come in so many different shades of purple and even green. Transition pieces normally require me to dye or paint the crepe paper, so there might be additional experimenting at this point. At 80% complete, I rearrange the bouquet once again, and at this point, I'm usually still making transition pieces or foliage and looking at what else I am missing from the bouquet. I pretty much keep building the bouquet until I'm satisfied with how the flowers looks beside each other.There a several flowers in this garden wildflower paper flower bouquet that I've never made before, and even the hellebores in this bouquet are improvements from the previous hellebores I've made. It was really nice not working with garden roses and peonies this time around; even though I love garden roses and peonies (*sigh* sooo gorgeous), as a creative person, I like variety and trying new forms. This time, I really fell in love with the cosmos - oh how they dance above the bouquet! And I truly grew to love the Queen of the Vine - the clematis - after I had put them in the arrangement and realized they were the star of the bouquet.The garden wildflower paper flower bouquet took me about 6 weeks to complete. There were many days when I wouldn't touch my scissors. I often worked during Baby T's nap times, during his wake hours when he was able to play by himself, during the hours when I was able to drop him off with my parents for the day once a week, and more often than not, burning the midnight oil. I loved every minute of it though! I find making flowers and arranging them so therapeutic that I enjoy working late at night when it's quiet. Actually, I'm a bit of a night owl as I get more and more efficient the deeper into the night I work.I had a hard deadline of June 2nd. That was the day we were flying off to NYC to deliver the bouquet to Linda (and go on a mini vacation - the first flight for Baby T!), so I also had to shoot all my photos before June 2nd. Luckily, June 1st was a sunny day, so I was able to shoot my photos, take the bouquet apart, spray each stem with UV-protection spray, and prepare them for packaging....Packaging was an entirely different challenge! I originally packed it in one large box and had paper cones constructed for some of the flowers to protect their blooms, but then realized that if I put the box into our luggage, I couldn't fit anything else in there, so I ended up repacking the stems into two separate boxes, ditched the cone-head protectors, and just prayed that nothing would get squished. Oh and we ended up hand carrying the boxes too.A word about the photography: This is the first time that I used a dark background for my flowers, and I absolute love it! I decided to go dark because white flowers are always so difficult to shoot - it's so easy to over-expose the white while trying to get a decent, clear, shot of the darker flowers. Still, I found it difficult to get everything in focus because I wasn't shooting under full light and did not use a bouncer. I'm going to continue to experiment with the dark background and hopefully improve on my photography, so bear with me!Some of you have been asking for tutorials - I'm really really hoping to post one very soon. I do want to post a tutorial on a flower that hasn't really gotten enough spotlight yet though, and one that I haven't taught at a workshop yet.Have a wonderful week everyone!Jessie