Working on the random ideas that pop into my head is one of the ways that I’m staying sane during these stressful times. So when the idea to do an Alice in Wonderland theme photoshoot in place of my canceled bday trip to Punta Cana crossed my mind, I headed to Pinterest in search of a tissue paper flower tutorial that I had saved. It was a rainy week so instead of an outdoor shoot, I stayed inside and decided to do a dark forest take on the theme.
This tissue paper flower tutorial is inspired by the Giant Paper Flowers from Ruche on Design Sponge. That site is shuttering soon, so I’m glad that I decided to do this project before it disappeared.
Keep reading to learn how to make giant tissue paper flowers and get insight into the amount of time it takes, its difficulty level, and its costs.
Difficulty: Easy-ish. The flowers aren’t difficult to make, but it will take a lot of time and a little patience. Just turn on your favorite podcast or tv show and listen as you work through each step to pass the time.
Time: It took three days to finish five flowers ranging from 2 – 6 feet tall, totaling around 10-12 hours. I got some help on the second day, which made the process go a lot quicker.
Cost: I spent around $100 for supplies. Under normal circumstances and with more advanced planning, this project could’ve been done a lot cheaper. I was limited because there are fewer stores open that sell the supplies needed, the open stores have limited quantities, and ordering online combined with some express shipping increased the price.
- plastic cups
- chicken wire – The wire should be wide enough to fold around the rim of the plastic cup and it should be long enough to match your desired height for the flowers.
- 20-gauge wire
- gloves and wire cutters
- tape, glue, and scissors
- tissue paper
- a roll of kraft paper
- dried moss
- zip ties
- pipe cleaners
What I used:
|Hefty Plastic Cups||$4|
|Ready-Mix Concrete Patch – I could not find cement, so I used this instead. You need something that has enough weight to hold the flower in place.||$8|
|Chicken Wire 12 inches x 150 feet x 1 inch mesh – This was pretty much the only wire that I could get in time. You don’t need this much wire unless you’re planning to make a lot of flowers. I still have more than half left.||$29|
|20-gauge steel wire||$10|
|Garden gloves – already owned||$0|
|Kraft paper – I had some at home that I used||$0|
|24pack of 20×30 inch tissue paper in yellow, holiday green, red wine, electric pink and ghost gray at $2.22 per pack||$11|
|Aleene’s Original Tacky Glue||$5|
|wax applicator for concrete mix||$0|
|washers to use as pattern weights||$0|
1. Prep your ready to use concrete the day before you plan to make the flowers.
Materials needed: cement, plastic cups
Follow the directions on the cement package. I used a large wax applicator to add the cement patch to the plastic cups and let them sit for at least 24 hours. I filled the cups about halfway because I only had one container of the mix. That was enough.
Cement would’ve been a better option because it dries solid, but the patch worked in a pinch.
2. Make the giant stems.
Material needed: chicken wire, wire cutters, gloves, tape, glue, kraft paper, tissue paper
Tip: If you’re using chicken wire and making very tall flowers (over three feet), it’s helpful to cut the wire, so it’s wide enough to fit around the entire rim of the plastic cup. For shorter flowers, you can cut a width that fits around half of the cup.
Step 1: Cut the wire to your desired width and length. It is helpful to wear gloves to avoid injury.
Step 2: Mold the wire around the rim of the plastic cup and fold the ends into the inside of the cup to secure it. I used an empty plastic cup for this part.
Step 3: Continue to mold the wire into the shape of a stem. My wire came rolled. Tying one side of the wire into the other side made it easy to reshape the wire into a stem. Be mindful of the width of your stem. If it’s too thick, it will be challenging to add the flowers to it later.
Step 4: Cover the plastic cup and wire with kraft paper. I sat the cup and wire in a sheet of kraft paper and taped the paper up the length of the stem.
Step 5: Glue the green tissue paper up the entire length of the stem.
Step 6: If you used an empty cup to form the stem, place the cup filled with cement inside of the empty cup. It should stand tall now. You may need to manipulate the wire a little to get it to stand as you’d like.
3. Make the tissue paper leaves.
Materials needed: 20-gauge wire, green tissue paper, glue, wire cutters
Step 1: Draw a leave. I drew a leave on a piece of tissue paper to use as a template for all of the leaves.
Step 2: Cut out two sheets of tissue paper for every leave. I recommend stacking a few layers of tissue paper and cutting them at once to save time.
Step 3: Cut the wire and form it into a stem, leave extra wire at the bottom. I folded a piece of wire and twisted it together to add a little thickness.
Step 4: Place the wire on one of the tissue sheets, add glue and then place another layer on top of the wire.
Step 5: Let dry, stick two leaves into the stem of your flowers in your desired placement. The leaves will go through the holes in the chicken wire and stay in place.
4. Make the flower petals out of tissue paper.
Materials needed: pipe cleaner, tissue paper, moss, scissors
Step 1: Cut tissue paper into petals of various sizes. I recommend creating a template of the sizes that you want and then stacking the paper and using the model to cut the petals at one time.
Step 2: Starting with the smallest petals, take four pieces, and form the paper into a bouquet. Twist the bottom of the petals together to hold the flowers in place. Add the next layer of petals and repeat until you get the desired size.
Step 3: Use a piece of pipe cleaner to secure the petals in place. You could also use tape, but I found that the pipe cleaner worked better.
Step 4: Cut out circles of paper and glue the moss into the center, glue that piece into the center of your bouquet.
Step 5: Attach the bouquet to the stem of the flowers with a zip tie.
Step 6. Enjoy your giant flowers.
I will definitely redo this project in the future an experiment more with different types of stems and petals.