Paper gardenias mimic the look of fresh flowers but will last much longer. Crepe paper is the ideal material for making the petals for these flowers. It is thin enough to curve easily to produce a delicate, realistic-looking petal. Unlike tissue paper, however, it has been treated to prevent tears. Use the paper flowers anywhere you would use fresh. They work well in bouquets or centerpieces, or to adorn a dress or headband.
Things You'll Need
- White crepe paper
- Clear tape
- Green 16-gauge floral wire
- Wire cutters
- Green floral tape
Measure and cut nine 2-inch-wide by 3-inch-long rectangles out of white crepe paper. This will be the bottom layer of the gardenia, with the largest petals. Cut seven 1 1/2-inch-wide by 3-inch-long rectangles for the next layer up, which will create slightly smaller petals.
Make a third layer of five 1-inch-wide by 3-inch long rectangles and a fourth layer of three 1/2-inch wide by 3-inch-long rectangles.
Mark the middle of one short end of one of the largest rectangles with a light pencil mark. Lightly draw a curved line from the middle point, on either side of the rectangle, from the middle mark to about halfway down the sides of the rectangle to form a teardrop shape on the end of the rectangle. This is the petal of the flower. Do this to one end of each of the other rectangles.
Cut along the lines you drew to reveal the pointed ends of the petals. Pinch the sides of the paper together directly below the base of each teardrop-shaped petal and attach a small piece of clear tape to keep them together. Roll the ends of the rectangles below the tape to give them a point -- this will make it easier to bring the bottom ends of the petals together.
Gather the smallest petals together so that the wide bases meet in the middle. Bend them at the bases so the broad sides of the petals are all facing up. Wrap a piece of clear tape around them directly underneath where you bent them to hold together the center layer of petals.
Gather the bases of the next largest size of petals around the bottoms of the middle layer and bend them gently so the broad sides face upward. Wrap clear tape around the bottom of this layer and the bottom ends of the middle layer. Repeat this step with each new layer of larger petals until you have finished with the largest, bottom layer.
Measure and cut a piece of green, 16-gauge floral wire with a pair of wire cutters to make the stem. The stem should be around 6 inches long. Place the bottom end of the flower to the wire stem, with the end of the wire against the base of the flower petals.
Wrap green floral tape around the bottom ends of the petals and the stem to hold them together. Keep wrapping until the entire bottom end of the white crepe paper flower are hidden by the green tape. Trim the end of the tape and your paper gardenia flower is finished.
Tips & Warnings
- Lightly spray the finished flowers with gardenia scent spray, or lightly dab the bases of the petals with gardenia scented oil.
- Photo Credit Medioimages/Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images