Vintage book paper flowers

These are so simple to make! I found the idea on pinterest of course. I was especially intrigued because they used Distress Inks, and I had yet to play with those. No longer true! These posies will be great to use in decorating things like Marie shoes, packages, and tags. I can even see a small bouquet.

I made this first batch without stems, but stems would be easy to do. I’ll mention more about that at the end. You’ll need some old book pages, Distress inks or watercolors, and a small brass fastener. That’s it!

Start by making a pattern–use the bottom of a glass and a pencil to draw 4 light circles on one of the book pages, or fewer if you want bigger flowers. The ones I made were about 3 inches wide. Now, stack up three book pages underneath the ones with the circles.  Cut random small scallops outside the circles, you want these to all be the same size, but the scallops can be irregular. It will take 8 pieces to make one flower, so this will give you enough for 2 flowers.

Using Distress ink or diluted watercolors dab some color on the outside of each piece where the scallops are. This shouldn’t look perfect, it’s just an antiquing method. Then spray water on the areas you’ve inked or painted so the water disperses the color a bit. The edges will curl up when they’re wet but uncurl when they’re dry. But BEFORE they’re dry, you want to crush up each piece into a little ball. Leave them that way to dry a little (5-10 minutes). But while they’re still moist, uncrumple each piece carefully and stack them so all of their edges coincide. Then poke a very pointed scissors in the middle to create a place for the fastener to go through. Spread the prongs of the fastener to the back of the bottom flower piece.

Now crumple each piece up separately again, mushing it up and toward the center like you’re creating a bud. Really wrinkle them. Then one by one, starting with the outer most layer, spread back the pieces to create the shape of the flower. Let it dry that way.

If you wanted a stem, I’d go as far as poking the hole in the center of the petal stack, then I’d hot glue a floral stem in the hole, making sure to get all the layers glued to the stem. Then just carry on as described to wrinkle and spread them.

I like the Distress inks a lot, but I wish they had more of a color range to offer. In the batch shown, the aqua and tea stained flowers are distress inks and the pink and lavender-gray ones are watercolors. Both methods work fine. Have fun with these.


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