How to Make a Red Poppy


Large, bright red and bearing a silky texture, poppy flowers make eye-catching centerpieces in flower arrangements but can be somewhat difficult to come by due to legal controls placed on the sale of the plant. To counteract this, create your own long-lasting artificial poppy flowers for use in your crafts or bouquets by taking advantage of the similarity between red poppy petals and tissue paper.

Things You'll Need

  • Floral wire
  • Floral tape
  • Black velvet
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Cotton balls
  • Black string
  • Tacky craft glue
  • Red tissue paper
  • Prepare the flower's stem. Cut a 10-inch length of floral wire and wrap it completely with green floral tape. Wrap around the wire horizontally, spiraling up the length with multiple loops.

  • Make the pollen center of the flower. Cut a circle of black velvet with a 5-inch diameter. Lay this circle upside-down in your hand, laying flat. Place three cotton balls in the center and then wrap the fabric around them. Compress the cotton into the tightest ball you can and then bundle and tightly tie off the fabric beneath this using a piece of black string. Double-knot and then cut away excess string as well as the fabric beneath the tie.

  • Insert one end of the wire stem into the center of the bundled fabric beneath on the underside of the pollen center piece.

  • Cut four or five circles of red tissue paper for the flower's petals. Make half of them 4 inches in diameter and the others 5 inches.

  • Apply glue to the underside of the velvet center piece. Coat generously, but don't get any glue on the top of the piece.

  • Attach the petals to the flower one at a time, starting with the smaller circles of tissue. For each piece, insert the bottom of the stem into the center of the circle and then carefully thread the tissue paper up the length of the wire. Wrap the paper around the pollen center, attaching it to the glue. Apply a small amount of glue to the outside bottom of this piece. Repeat until all of the petals are attached in layers.

  • Gently crumple the petal layers to shape them.

  • Use scissors to cut out small strips of tissue to create separation in the circular layers, making individual petals. Stagger these cuts between layers so that none of the spaces between petals line up.

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  • Photo Credit a poppy image by Tomasz Zawada from
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