Giant Paper Flowers: A Tutorial

I came across a tutorial a while back about making giant paper flowers, and thought they were beautiful. They make unique bouquets for brides and they look striking, big, pieces of colour which can make a whole picture and also add a bit of fun.

I found the idea of giant paper flowers pretty inspiring, and my hands itched to try making one for myself, so I did and here’s how it turned out. I didn’t realise how fiddly the whole thing is though, so be warned! And you also need a LOT of floral wire and glue, and lots of patience, as it took me a few hours to make this rose (mainly due to waiting for glue to dry, pieces to be lined up etc etc.)

So here’s my tutorial on how to make a giant rose, although I can’t take all the credit as there was a very good tutorial here by Green Wedding Shoes, which was easy to follow, as well as the original step-by-step by the Martha Stewart blog. Please ‘scuse the carpet background, pictures were taken in the Spare Oom (which is currently unoccupied in my house and has decent lighting), it’s a good thing you can’t see the mess all over the floor and the newspaper scattered around.

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You will need:
• 1 Roll of floral tape (I found mine on eBay)
• 6 x 18-gauge floral stem wire (again, from eBay)
• 4 x sheets of doublette crepe paper for petals, size is 10 x 49 inches per sheet (I bought mine here, but you don’t HAVE to use doublette paper because it’s not cheap, plain crepe paper works just as well if you don’t want the two-tone effect)
• 1 sheet of Doublette crepe paper in green for leaves, calyx, stem
• 1 round pencil (any colour, I don’t mind)
• Craft glue (I used a standard crafts glue which seems to work on everything, including my fingers)
• Crepe paper templates (download from Martha Stewart)
• 3 x copies of teardrop template
• 8 x copies of the heart-shaped template
• 2 x copies of the leaf template
• 1 x copy of the calyx template (the zig-zaggy one)

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And here’s a baby for scale, and my finished rose. She wouldn’t let go of the carrot, too busy nibbling it, but I like to think that it adds character to the whole picture.

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Let me know if this is something you ever end up trying – I’d love to know how your attempt went!

Rock ‘n’ Roll Tea at The W Hotel

I had the wonderful luck if being spoiled by a few good friends this weekend, who made plans to have ‘Rock Tea’ at the beautiful W Hotel in Soho, London – made even more lovely because of the fact that I hadn’t seen these friends for some time. The hotel was beautiful and the experience even more, particularly as it provided a venue for an enjoyable experience with friends.

Being the typical snap-happy amateur photographer that I am, I took hundreds of pictures, so here are the ones I liked the most. It was a very ‘English’ tea, with about fifty billion (okay, I exaggerate, about 10) different types of tea to start off with, and several yummy goodies which were brought out bit by bit so we could savour them properly : )

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Surprisingly, the sandwiches were a mix of vegetarian, fish and halal chicken, and were honestly the best sandwiches I’ve had at a tea place yet – I could even say I almost enjoyed them more than the cake and nibbles (and I’m a real cake freak!). I also loved the fact that the service was impeccable – the waiters and staff were discreet, friendly and very non-invasive, which made our tea-experience that much more giggly and silly.

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The tea area itself is beautiful, with hundreds of decorative plates lining a huge shelf which partitioned it off from the bar and club area – the plates being printed with various celebrity portraits, icons and art. Perhaps it was the time of day, but the tea area was also pretty quiet, which created a really peaceful atmosphere and also gave us a chance to relax.

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All in all, a lovely day was had (we also didn’t have any pressure to leave after a certain period the way some places only allot you around 90 minutes or two hours before they hustle you to get off their premises!) I’ve been ooh-ing and aahh-ing at the lovely pictures because of how beautiful the set up was, and it’s made me want to go to tea again soon. I’m hoping to try a new place soon – *fingers crossed that someone (heck, anyone) takes the hint and takes me to the Ritz*

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Glueguns & Craftiness: Mint Paper and Split Pins

We had a family do this weekend, so I took the opportunity to revert to my childhood primary school classes to making windmills for decoration (minus the PVA glue all over my fingers and hair). I’ll post more pictures soon, but here’s what I’ve been doing lately. I’ve not been able to post for a few days because my internet is going haywire, but don’t worry, I’ve been writing (and snapping pictures!) away so I’ll be able to bombard you soon!

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Glueguns & Craftiness: Crepe Paper and Floral Wire

Remember those tv shows when we were children, where you always needed pipe cleaners (which I never had), some poster paint (also didn’t have) and some nimble hands (I was a clumsy child)? I feel like this is a promotion for one of those, although don’t worry, there’s not ‘here’s one I made earlier’ joke in this post.

I’ve started a mini project this weekend, although I haven’t gotten this far (partly because I was meant to use a templates for some of it, and I’ve printed out the wrong size!) It’s been fun to get my hands busy and do something creative, especially because I feel like I’ve been a bit lazy lately. I won’t say what I’m making yet, but I will post results soon!

Hope you had a proactive weekend, even if you did just sit in the sunshine and not move much : )

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Purple Ombre Flower Mondays

The weather the last few days have been beautiful. it’s finally shining brightly and there’s a nice cool breeze outside which we really have been making the most of (translation: we’ve been wandering around the garden and looking at my mum’s flowers). Here’s a pretty ombre-style purple-pink flower to start the week off, it caught my eye because of the pretty tones of pink, fuschia and lilac and also because the petals remind me of tissue paper.

Here’s hoping the week stays warm and not temperamental (last week we had all four seasons in a single day, sun, rain, wind and slight hailstone!) – Happy Monday everyone!

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A Daisy in Three Stages

I like this idea of splitting a single picture into three (or more), to give it an interesting effect – like this one, which lets us focus on different parts of the same flower. While this is only a quick effect which was created on my mobile, I like the idea of mixing two or three images together in one photograph – a bit like a collage perhaps. I’m wondering how else I can play around with this, with various colours and themes – although for now, I’ll probably keep it simple and see what works!

Presenting…a daisy in three stages : )

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Blue Petal Mondays

I love playing around with colours and lighting when it comes to photography, (and yes, on my mobile phone too) which I often do a lot to see the end result of  – although I’ll be doing a proper post about this soon!

I thought I’d play with the colour of these flowers, and see what I came up with. I did several versions of this photograph, using different apps, but I liked this one best (done with the Photo Studio app) because of how natural and pretty the shades of blue looked (if blue petals can look natural, that is), and the dreamy look it has. I can imagine a little pixie hiding behind one of these (or maybe something from Fergully!), and a tiny little world of flower-beings, perhaps.

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Curved Flowers

I thought I would join the Weekly Photo Challenge, which is ‘Curves‘ this week – my interpretations is curved (and curving flowers). I found these beautiful flowers (and a whole load more) at the wonderful Eden Project, Cornwall.

#1. This is one of my favourite flowers that I saw at the Eden Project (and not just because they remind me of those striped sweets, Campinos, either!). These flowers looked vividly coloured and graceful, and of course, they’re very photogenic. From all of the flowers in the Eden Project that stays with me the most, this is one of them.

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2. I remember my mum pointing this out to me in the walkways at Eden Project, which we all ‘ooh-ed and ahhed’ over. It’s not obvious in the picture, but this patch was pretty huge, and covered quite a wide space, which made the purple and green spirals look even more magnificent because it encircled the stone walkways and seemed to follow us around as we walked around the garden areas. It must have taken a lot of work to make these curves, but it was well appreciated!

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3. Lastly is this arum lily, which I saw in abundance at the Eden Project and which I’ve included because it’s one of my favourite flowers. There’s something about this flower which represents elegance to me, it almost reminds me of a sheath dress made from a single piece of fabric and seamless stitched together to make a striking, elegant Greek-style robe. The way this flower curves upwards and outwards in a shape which I’ve always tried to capture on paper and in photography, but it’s something which will always fascinate me.

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And that folks, is my post about curves – what’s your idea of a curve?

Waterdrops on Flower tops

These are a from a series of photographs I did of my mum’s garden last weekend, which I loved because it looked all dewy and natural (sounds like a foundation advert, don’t I?), and because I love the shades of purple the flowers are in. These are one of my favourite types of flowers, giant daisy-types (I have no idea what the name of these ones are, I’m a big ignoramus, me), but I liked how well my camera picked up the detail of the petals and droplets in these. Next, pester my mum to grow me some sunflowers!

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