Monday, September 12, 2011

forcing paper tulips


- Double sided paper for the flowers and leaves, cut in to 1 1/2 inch square x 6

- 1″ circle out of matching cardstock

- green chenille pipe cleaner for stem

- small rick rack for flower stamen

- adhesive

- scissors

- template (print and cut to fill a 8 1/2 x 11 sheet)

Now, let’s get started.

Step 1


Get everything cut first. I chose some pink patterned paper for the petals. I prefer double sided paper for this project because you will see both sides. If you don’t have double sided paper, you can always finish the other side with chalk, ink or paint.

Step 2


Curl each petal around your finger to shape them. You don’t have to be perfect about it. In fact, less perfect is best!

Step 3


Apply your adhesive to the center cut on the inside of the petal. I went ahead and did it on all my petals so I could make them in an assembly line.

Step 4


Fold one side on to the adhesive and secure it. Then fold the other side in. The petal starts to take shape.

Step 4


Your finished petals should look like a bunch of painted finger nails when you are done. Just kidding. No I’m not. They look like fake finger nails.

Step 5


Take your 1″ circle piece and poke a hole in the center. The hole needs to be small so just use a large needle or pick. If it’s too big, it won’t hold the stem in place, as I learned from experience.

Step 6


Slide your circle on to the pipe cleaner. Then fold the top down to make a little nub.

Step 7


Tie a piece of rick rack on the nub. This is your stamen. I waited to trim mine down but you can do it now if you want. Just leave about 1/2″ to stick up to the top of the petals.

Step 8


Now we start the flower assembly. Begin by applying adhesive to the bottom of each petal. Mount on the circle using it as a base.

Step 9


Alternate petals on each side to build the flower. Again, it doesn’t have to be perfect but you don’t want any gaps when you are finished.

Step 10


Apply the second set of petals to the outside of the first.

Step 11


Once all four sides are covered, use the last two to cover over the first two. This gives some dimension to the flower. Slide the stem down inside the flower until the stamen is just peeking out.

Step 12


Take your leaves and curve them over in the same way we curved the petals. (The paper I showed in the supply photo is different than this because I ran out and did the supply list last.)

Step 13


Apply adhesive to the bottom inch or so of each leaf. If you think about how tulip leaves grow on the stem you realize that the stem grows up the middle of the leaves.

Step 14


So we apply the leaves curling it around out pipe cleaner stem. I started with the smaller one at the top and staggered down to the largest, which is how they grown. Curl any left over pipe cleaner up and around the base.

Step 15

Put your finished tulip in a flower pot or vase and you are done. I put mine in a vintage blue ceramic gravy boat with some of that floral moss. I like how the tulips move and are a little floppy just like real tulips.

Friday, September 9, 2011

How to tie a bow

Learning how to tie a bow is easy with a little practice, and is a wonderful skill to have for gift wrapping, card making, and more.

1. Measure out your ribbon by wrapping the ribbon around your box twice – cut your ribbon length. Leave enough extra ribbon so you can trim the edges again, if necessary, after your bow is tied.

Step 1_how to tie a bow

2. Wrap ribbon around the box from the bottom to the top. Hold ribbon taut around the top of the box, and with your right hand pull the length of ribbon on the left over and under to create a single tie, as you would when tying your shoe.

Step 2_how to tie a bow

3. Place your left thumb onto the ribbon to hold the tension and pull the ribbon length of the right side up to create a loop.

Step 3_how to tie a bow

4. Pull the loop to the left as you use your left hand to take the ribbon length around the loop.

Step 4_how to tie a bow

5. Using your left thumb you can push the ribbon length under the first loop, then through the opening. Use your right hand to pull up to create a second loop.

Step 5_how to tie a bow

6. Pull the two loop ends to create an even bow.

Step 6_how to tie a bow

7. Tighten the bow to your desired length.

Step 7_how to tie a bow

8. To create even edges, pull together both ribbon tails and cut at the same location. Cut at any angle you please. Sharp scissors are a must!

Step 8_how to tie a bow

Ta da!…the perfect bow. Now finish off with a decorative gift tag and note to make your gift special and unique.

Monday, September 5, 2011

How to make boxes from paint swatches

If you've got paint chips sitting around begging to be made into something, try folding them into boxes for paperclips, thumbtacks, party favor candies, or tiny gifts. I made these from Behr swatches, available at Home Depot.

You'll need paint swatches, double-stick tape, an X-acto knife, ruler, and cutting mat.

For the box bottom, cut a 1/2" strip off each of the two rounded ends of the swatch. You should be left with a 5" x 5" square. At a point slightly more than 1 1/2" from one edge—about 1 17/32" if you want to be picky, but I just eyeballed it—score a line with your knife. Repeat on the remaining three sides. These scoring lines are shown as dashed lines above. Then cut out the gray shaded sections. This is what the box bottom should look like:

The box lid is constructed the same way. Trim a swatch down to a 3" x 3" square. At a point slightly less than 1/2" from one edge, score a line with your knife. Repeat on the remaining three sides and cut out the gray shaded sections.

Fold each sheet on the scored lines, bending flaps inward and securing them with double-stick tape.

Make flowers from crepe paper


Sheet of crepe paper
Small piece of cardstock
Glue (I used Aleene's Tacky Glue)

Cut 12 circles from a sheet of crepe paper, any size you like depending on how big you want the final flower to be. I accordion-folded a strip of paper and cut multiple circles at once. No need to be too precise; freehand circles will do.

Orient each petal so the grain in the paper runs vertically. Apply a bit of glue at the bottom of the petal and pinch it to create small gathers. When the glue has dried, press both thumbs into the center of each petal and stretch the paper to curl the edges inward, forming a bowl shape.

Cut out a small circle of cardstock (about the same size as the petals before you shaped them.) Glue five petals around the outside edge. Then stagger four petals inside that ring, followed by three petals in the middle.

To make a center for the flower, cut a small strip of crepe paper and fold it in half. Cut notches along one long edge of the doubled paper to make fringe. Roll the fringed paper around a toothpick and secure with glue. Finally, glue this piece into the center of the flower.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Woven paper gift topper

♥ Cut some strips of colored paper. Mine were 0.5cm wide. They need to be long enough to wrap around your gift. If you have a paper shredder then this might make the job even quicker!
♥ Line up your vertical strips on a table top…you can use a bit of sticky tape at one end to hold them in place while you weave away.
♥ Weave the horizontal strips into the vertical strips.
♥ Using a bit of sticky tape secure to your gift. Job done!

I also made a rainbow gift topper….no surprise there then!

Father’s Day Shirt & Tie Gift Boxes

Supplies you’ll need:

gift box template + bow tie / necktie template

a printer
cardstock for the box and tie(s)*
a ruler
a pen or pencil
glue dots
double-sided tape
1/4 inch circle hole punch (for bow tie box)
a scoring tool (optional)
a cutting mat (optional)

Print the box template onto lightweight cardstock, cut out along the solid lines, and assemble according to the directions found in the template file. Place your gift in the box, and use double-sided tape or glue dots to securely close the flap. Print bow tie/necktie templates, cut out, and trace onto your choice of patterned or solid colored paper. Cut out the tie(s) and attach to the box flap using double stick tape or glue dots. If making the bow tie box, punch out three 1/4 inch “buttons” using a hole punch, and attach to the front of the box using glue dots (small Zots are the perfect size).

Alternative directions: Assemble the box and attach the tie to the top flap first, and add your gift last.

These boxes will hold a variety of small Father’s Day gifts, including watches, fishing lure, small food treats, gift cards, and tech gadgets like iPod Nanos or USB thumb drives.