Paper Gardenias

Paper Gardenias

*update – I’ve added some pictures from the actually wedding of the finish product below*

Yesterday, I got to go teach a bunch of wonderful ladies a craft of my choice. I am not an amazing crafter, but I love being creative. I also don’t have a huge arsenal of skills that I can pull from, so I usually just share what I am working on/interested in and, perfectly for Spring-themed crafting, I am currently working on paper flowers for my brother Luke’s wedding. When they asked me if I could make flowers for their wedding, I said yes without really thinking it through. Lots of pinning on Pinterest and testing (Martha Stewart’s coffee filter roses were almost the death of my nerves) I settled on these gorgeous gardenias.

You really, really should make these. It is so much easier than you would think, and they are stunning bunched together in a vase. I am also really excited to glue one onto a clip and wear one in my hair some day. I was going to write you a tutorial, but honestly, you should just go to this website and follow her super clear instructions. I have included some notes here, though, that might help with the process.

I bought my paper at TKMaxx (is there something you can’t get there? I am so glad we have one here in Leipzig) it’s from American Crafts and can be found on but it is much more expensive there. It was much heavier than the recommended paper, but it still worked beautifully (albeit with more hand-cramps than lighter paper would cause). Lia says to use lighter paper for a more natural look, but I was going for something patterned anyways, so natural wasn’t high on my priority list. The paper is also printed on both sides and that just looks gorgeous. I used a lighter paper that I bought at IDEE kreativmarkt for the ladies yesterday, and although it wasn’t printed on both sides, it still looked great and curled a treat.

For added interested I have made some flowers that are simply buds, and they consist of petal layers 1 and 2. I have also made some flowers that just have 3 or 5 petal layers instead of 6. This just keeps it from looking too ‘same-y’.

I didn’t use the leaves.

Don’t be afraid to really curl the petals, but don’t forget to be a bit gentle. Holding the petal not in the centre circle but a bit into the petal keeps it from tearing off as you curl it. This happened a few times to me and the ladies. It can be glued back together and usually the tear won’t be seen. I just want to save you from some suffering.

I saved all the glueing to the end. I just don’t like having the glue gun on the whole time. It stresses me out.

You can mass produce. Lay the template out carefully to make the most of your paper, cut two sheets together, curl a bunch and then glue a bunch. I manage at least 4 an evening.

Want to see what they look like? Here are some pictures of the process and the finished product to hopefully inspire you to make your own!

Cutouts ready to go
Cutouts ready to go
Curling for layers 1+2. I thought this step didn't matter that much, but it makes the folding so much easier.
Curling for layers 1+2. I thought this step didn’t matter that much, but it makes the folding so much easier.
Folding of layers 1+2
Folding of layers 1+2
All twisted layers 1+2
All twisted layers 1+2
Flowers assembled to be glued
Flowers assembled to be glued
Gardenia all glued together
Gardenia all glued together
Putting on the tricky tape
Some of the finshed flowers

So that’s it, guys! Super easy, really fun and a great thing to do while watching your favourite show. Or even better, gather the girls and make them together! Be warned – it’s addicting. And please send me a picture so I can enjoy your beautiful creations!

I’m trying the roses next from the same site. Hopefully I’ll not suffer traumatic flashbacks to the Martha Stewart debacle.

*update: here are some pictures of the finished product. Big thank you to the Bride’s sister-in-law who assembled the bouquets after I almost had a breakdown trying to make it look nice*

Getting the size right was a challenge. The bottom of all the bouquets were lined baby’s breath
The bridesmaids all had a bouquet with baby’s breath and 3 flowers
In the end, I had made enough that we could decorate around the building and sue 3 as a cake topper. I made some with less layers of petals as fillers and they worked well here, too. 

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