April 6, 2012

How-to: Paper Hydrangeas

Hydrangeas happen to be one of my all-time favorite flowers.  I just love how soft and puffy and beautiful they are.  They're also so varied in colors and they last a really long time in the garden. (From Spring all the way through late Fall.)

In my last post I showed a collage I made and one of the elements was hydrangeas made from... what else?  Paper!  I learned the technique from a book called "The Paper Garden".  This is one of my go-to books for ideas on making paper flowers.  I don't usually use the techniques on my cards simple because they are SO time consuming that I'd have to charge a gajillion dollars per card.

Anyway, let's get started.  Here is your supply list:


1.  Mod Podge (best glue/sealant ever)
2.  toothpicks
3.  Small styrofoam balls (you can find at most craft and art supply stores)
4.  small blossom punch (I got mine here  it's called "hydra punch")
5.  sponge
6.  mulberry or other soft paper in the same color as your flowers
7. paint brush
8.  x-acto knife
9.  stylus (you can use any rounded tip - get creative)
10.  tweezers

You need to cut your styrofoam balls in half, 
cover them in mod podge with the paint brush and then 
wrap them with the Mulberry paper:


Set them aside to dry.  Now comes the tedious part.  You need to punch a million tiny flowers. ;)


You will then take each individual flower and "cup" it with the stylus on the sponge:


Once you have them all done then you can start gluing the flowers randomly on the ball.  
First, mount the ball on a toothpick so you have a "handle":


 I made a little (very bad) video on my process making them.  I didn't have any time to edit it or add text (sorry).  You can see how I only mod podge a small area at a time and add the flowers and then add more glue and continue.  You want to place them randomly so they look more natural.  And then go back and fill in any bare areas.  It'll take a while but you can put some music on and have some zen time (it works for me).



Once you add them all and they dry you can add some pearls or beads for centers (depends on how much time you have).  Then you can cut or punch out some leaves and arrange them.  This is how they turned out:


Of course, hydrangeas are most commonly blue but they can be anywhere from white to deep purple.  You can also make variegated ones with different shades of the same color.  
Here is a pic of some in my garden last year:


I hope you try this out and, if you do, I'd love to see what you come up with.

Have a wonderful weekend full of sunshine and prettiness!