diy project: giant paper flowers from ruche

You may remember the wedding of our lovely D*S contributor Brittany Watson Jepsen. Her huge paper blooms made such a splash that she started selling them in her shop, and just recently Brittany wrote a great article for Brooklyn Bride about the paper flower trend. I’m thrilled that this is a growing phenomenon; I adore anything made in exaggerated scale, so I feel that the more giant flowers and plants there are in the world, the better.

This particular giant-flower DIY project comes from the creative team at Ruche. They decided to make these giant fantasy flowers for their spring lookbook, which is aptly titled “Enchantment.” Read below for the story of how this project came to be, and find the full tutorial after the jump. Thanks for sharing this awesome DIY, Ruche team, and thank you, Brittany, for being on the forefront of such a cool trend :) Enjoy! — Kate

Our creative team brainstormed ways to turn our spring lookbook, Enchantment, into a daydream. When the idea of oversized flowers came about, we couldn’t wait to make them a reality! Josh, the CFO of Ruche, used his engineering background to design the stems, and with the help of additional Ruche team members, they created them by hand at our warehouse. Surrounded by tissue paper and scissors, our talented set-design interns designed and created the rest of the flower pieces at our warehouse. Once they were finished, the whimsical daydream came to life. — The Ruche Team

Read the full how-to after the jump!

Materials

  • plastic cups
  • cement
  • approx. 5” wide stucco corner
  • approx. 20-gauge tie wire
  • gloves and wire cutters
  • tape, glue, and scissors
  • tissue paper
  • dried moss
  • zip ties

Instructions

Making the stem:

1. Determine how many flowers you’re going to make and pour cement into the corresponding number of plastic cups. Let harden.

2. Purchase stucco corner (sturdy wire) from your local hardware store. The pieces we used were 5” in width.

3. Cut the wire into desired stem lengths. We varied each stem from 3 to 8 feet high. Remember to protect your hands with gloves!

4. Use the cement cups as a base and mold the wire into stems.

5. Cover the wire stems with tape for a smooth surface.

6. Glue layers of tissue paper onto the surface until the entire stem is covered.

Making the leaves:

1. Purchase approximately 20-gauge tie wire from your local hardware store and cut into desired lengths. Remember to leave extra length at the end (to attach to the stem later).

2. Twist pieces of wire together to form the leaf base.

3. Cut layers of tissue paper into leaf shapes.

4. Glue the layers together around the wire base.

5. Poke the leaves into the stems.

Making the flowers:

1. Cut layers of tissue paper into petals of various sizes.

2. Form the smallest petals into a bouquet. Tape the bouquet’s stem to keep the layers together.

3. Add the next layer of petals and tape and repeat until you have reached the desired size.

4. For the flower centers, cut circles out of tissue paper, scrunch the edges, and glue two layers together.

5. Glue moss into the center of the circles.

6. Attach the center to the petals, and the flower is complete.

7. Use zip ties to attach the flower to the stem.

You’re done!

  1. Mathilde says:

    Sorry for my english… Where can I find what is glued in the middle of the flower : the brown texture ? I’m in France, so that would be easier to find this on internet. Thany you !

    1. Deanna says:

      It’s called Spanish Moss – found in craft stores here in the US.

  2. Linda says:

    I made “palm trees” years ago for a Luau style party I threw for the parents of my after school program. Similar to pvc pipe I used large cardboard rolls, I cannot remember If I made them or I got them from a carpet store or similar. Anyway, I covered those in brown paper and made giant palm leaves using a wire hanger I shaped and covered with green paper, then I cut the sides of the paper to shape and fringe. the ends of the leaves, wire hanger, I secured into the top of the tube/pipe. I stuck the trunk in a white bucket the contractors use and I filled it with sand/dirt..I covered the bucket, you could use fabric, paper, or whatever you can think of to cover it, or place it behind other decorations. You could even use led white lights for deco.
    Those palm trees were borrowed many times by other site directors wanting to put on a Luau for their parent nights. We also used them for a play. The trees lasted a long time, with some small repairs here and there, when I left the job, I left the trees behind to be enjoyed as long as possible.

  3. RUSTY says:

    Mathilde, the center of the flower is made from a handful of dried moss…you buy this moss in craft stores or a store that carries flower crafting supplies. If you cannot find the moss in La Belle France, use shredded dark colored paper, or anything that you can make that is shredded. Slap that with glue, and stick it in the center of the flower. Adieux!

  4. Tamiko says:

    Ok where can I buy

  5. Rusty says:

    Tamiko, you buy moss at Hobby Lobby, Michaels, JoAnnes, Walmart, Or flower supply stores. Most major stores have a flower or craft section. Hope this helps.

  6. Lisa Ryman says:

    In the process of making these right now for my wedding next weekend Oct. 5th ’13! We actually paper mache’d the stems and are using thicker newsprint (plane) paper.. painting the petals. I’m an artist and so completely appreciated these creative pieces… my friends have helped and have dibs on them afterwards for their homes! Thank you for your wonderful idea!

  7. Nina says:

    Lisa, would love to see a pic of the flowers you made for your wedding…. I’m planning to make some for my wedding next May.

  8. Claire Johnston says:

    I saw these made in our local village shop. I was amazed. How can I use them for a Great Gatsby night ??? It is my brother’s birthday and they live way out in the Australian countryside I could take everything with me but I need some ideas about the flowers for The Great Gatsby theme

  9. You should take part in a ontest for one of
    the finest sites online. I’m going to highly recommend
    this website!

  10. Lily says:

    Very beautiful!!lovely!And now I have to make some!
    But what colors are these flowers on the picture?
    Thank you for sharing!

  11. meg says:

    every time I see these I love them more!!

  12. Howdy! This post couldn’t be written any better! Reading this post reminds me of
    my good old room mate! He always kept chatting about this.

    I will forward this article to him. Pretty sure he
    will have a good read. Thanks for sharing!

  13. Jane says:

    I’ve made various very large flowers for events at work. I have never used wire….I use the cardboard tubs that come with wrapping paper for the stem…so much easier!

  14. Laural says:

    Hey, I love these flowers and was planning to make them for a graduation party. I am able to find everything but the stucco corner, where did you buy it from?
    Thanks

  15. Julie T. says:

    Thanks for sharing this tutorial guys! I can’t wait to try it. But, please check… this website is trying to pass this off as their own tutorial??? http://www.origamiart.org/handmade-giant-tissue-paper-flowers-roses-diy-tutorial.html

  16. Sue R says:

    Rusty…or anyone else who has made these flowers, wondering how you stored the tissue paper flowers themselves between uses. I made these using Rusty’s tips & a few others. They turned out great…I will post pictures & process I used later… But, right now…I am figuring out how to store the flowers. Any suggestions?

  17. Sue R says:

    Any suggestions for how to best store the actual tissue paper flowers?

  18. Sue R says:

    Any suggestions for how to best store the tissue paper flowers?

  19. Vicky says:

    My daughter and I made these for her outdoor wedding and they are adorable. However, they tend to blow over in the slightest breeze. Has anyone else had this problem? Any suggestions for keeping them upright?

  20. liam smith says:

    These are ace, would love to see them at a wedding

  21. Hannah says:

    So cool! Is doesn’t look like Brittany is selling the over sized flowers anymore? Was her sister selling them too?

  22. Aja says:

    Love love LOVE this tutorial! What a fun twist on those tissue paper flowers we used to make in school. We shared your tutorial in our recent paper flowers post (http://dgdinvitations.com/fun-stuff-paper-flowers/).

  23. Big tip here – don’t try and use recycled tissue paper – it won’t hold its shape! Use new, crisp tissue paper :)

  24. This totally just solved my idea block for a Alice in Wonderland shoot I’m doing in the spring. Just wondering if they are kind of reusable though.

  25. Jackie says:

    Thanks for the tutorial! I made 30 for my daughters bday party and it turned out awesome!! Heres the final result!!
    http://www.pinterest.com/pin/58898707602241872/

    1. Grace Bonney says:

      That looks amazing! Great job, Jackie!

      Grace :)

  26. what a beautiful dress.

  27. Louise says:

    These are so beautiful! I’ve decided to make my own for my wedding, however, I’ve made the flower out of hessian and the stalk out of bamboo sticks make it tie in with the natural theme of my wedding. does anybody have any ideas on how to make the bamboo sticks stand up though? I currently have a lots of beautiful flowers leaning against a wall rather than standing on their own.
    Thanks :)

    1. Jenny says:

      Louise – How about putting the bamboo sticks in some cement mix in a cup?

  28. Taline says:

    I am about to make these for an event and I have high hopes but do they actually stand up on their own if made exactly as explained?? It seems so top heavy!

    1. Crystal says:

      I am wondering the same thing…I am making for a stage at a a women’s conference and so afraid they will fall over on speakers. It is an elevated stage. Any other suggestions on base?

  29. Carla says:

    Hello,love love this idea for my sisters sweet 16 in November…my question is about the patels. How many would you say you used pre layer?

  30. Barbie says:

    Ok, I skimmed to see if you had this question but didn’t see it … where did you get that ADORABLE dress??!!

  31. Jennifer says:

    I have purchased all of the materials except for the stucco corners. Turns out, that is something common in California, but impossible to find in Chicago. I have contacted some wire companies in CA and Ohio–do you have an online source?

  32. Kim says:

    I’m making them for my daughter’s baby shower, using the stucco corner, but using Tiki torch stands for the outdoor event, they are like an umbrella stand designed for Tiki torches (bamboo) – I found mine several years ago in the garden section at a Walmart on clearance- I just located a universal torch stake just over $5 @ Amazon, this might work for you – :)

  33. BlogwatiG says:

    I loved this tutorial!!!! Had a mini version of it for my daughter’s Instagram party………..and every one loved it. Have also linked back to this page to share the awesomeness with my part of the world.

    Thank you once again and here is my link to my version.

    http://blogwatig.com/2015/05/the-13th-birthday-party-part-ii/

LEAVE A COMMENT

Design*Sponge reserves the right to restrict comments that do not contribute constructively to the conversation at hand, contain profanity, personal attacks, hate speech or seek to promote a personal or unrelated business. Our goal is to create a safe space where everyone (commenters, subjects of posts and moderators) feels comfortable to speak. Please treat others the way you would like to be treated and be willing to take responsibility for the impact your words may have on others. Disagreement, differences of opinion and heated discussion are welcome, but comments that do not seek to have a mature and constructive dialogue will not be published. We moderate all comments with great care and do not delete any lightly. Please note that our team (writers, moderators and guests) deserve the same right to speak and respond as you do, and your comments may be responded to or disagreed with. These guidelines help us maintain a safe space and work toward our goal of connecting with and learning from each other.