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Paper Crafting: Skills and Technique

Lesson 13 of 22

Giant & Miniature Paper Flora

Robert Mahar

Paper Crafting: Skills and Technique

Robert Mahar

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Lesson Info

13. Giant & Miniature Paper Flora

Lesson Info

Giant & Miniature Paper Flora

Once we've done that we have formed the basis of our flour now there are a couple of ways we want to finish it off obviously we want to put a statement in the center of the flower to kind of create that contrast ing pop in the middle and to do that we are using test wait paper text weight is a lighter weight than your cover stock I've taken an eight and a half by eleven sheet of paper and cut it in half vertically if you want to go ahead and just fold each of those in half vertically as well and what I'm going to be pulling out next is one of my favorite little craft gizmos you may or may not have come across these in the past but they are the multi blade scissor which I think are just kind of genius they have multiple blades, they're used for fringing and what we're going to do is on the folded edge of this piece of paper we're going to start at one end and we're going to cut it about three quarters of the way down you can see how deep I've cut there just about three quarters of the w...

ay through the paper to create that fringe and you're going to do this with both of your sheets. I originally discovered these in an organization store and they were sold and marketed as a tool for shredding your credit cards but I immediately saw paper application, so they're much more accessible now and you can usually find them at most craft and hobby stores. I know you ladies in the audio it's our sharing a pair so I'm gonna pass this office and as I finish, go hand that off to you okay, once you have fringed your pieces all the way down to the end to give it a little bit of added dimension, we're going to open it back up and we're going to fold it in the opposite direction and that just kind of makes it balloon out a little bit um fold in the opposite direction don't don't press that crease shut just allow that to kind of balloon out a bit. I'm going to match up the corners on this one and I'm going toe put a couple of staples in it and I'm going to do that with both of those so again opening it up, folding it in the opposite direction, not folding that crease flat, allowing it to balloon out, giving it a little extra dimension and then adding a couple of staples at the ends. All right, I know you ladies air still cutting, but I am going to continue on with this next step I am just going to take a standard pencil at my stapled end of the sheet and I'm going to start rolling it around and one thing you want to be mindful of when you're doing this you're just going to do your best to try and keep the paper on the bottom edge lined up the pencil is really useful just to kind of get this rolling process started you may find that it gets in the way and you can't just remove it I'm gonna continue rolling all the way down you will find the paper shifts a tiny bit that you end up with one flap on the end that is extended a little bit beyond the other but that's totally fine and when you get to the end I'm going to add a little bit of hot glue there to secure it in place gonna do that with both of the sheets because you're working on a little bit more intimate scale here you don't necessarily want to burn your fingers you might want to consider just taking the erase or end of your pencil and pressing that down for second allowing it to cool and you can see what this starts to do is create a little bit of a pom pom looking stamen for our center now this is a little small for the flower, which is why we've created two sheets I want to make it a little bit wider to kind of fill out that central space and so what I'm going to do is add a little bit additional hot glue here and start my second sheet I'm gonna just overlap it there and start rolling that around again trying to be somewhat mindful of keeping the edges of the paper lined up along this oh bottom edge we want that to be fairly even only because we're going to be applying hot glue to that and then pressing it down into the center of our flour and we wanted to sit relatively flat no once I get all the way around to the end I'm again going to apply just a little bit about a bit of hot glue to secure that like I need one more glue stick in there okay folding that over and then again just sort of pressing down with the race or end of the pencil to avoid burning your finger, you'll find some of a little bit of the glue will inevitably seep out the side don't worry about it it's not going to be visible necessarily in your final product so holding it there just for a second how we doing with the rolling ladies? It can be a little tricky and take a little practice I've had some of them where I've rolled it halfway through it it's out in away from me and sprung back open like a little bit of a spring um but at that point you just start over again and keep rolling so at this point I've got it where it's pretty secure this is what the top of it looks like. You might just kind of want to take your hand and fluff the top of that off a little bit to make it feel a little fuller I've seen these flowers done completely monochromatic where the stamen and the pedals are the same color, which is beautiful. You can also play around with a wider color palette if you choose a contrast in color for the center and then to apply it into the middle, I'm going to hold it with the flat bottom side up and I'm just going to apply a generous amount of hot glue on the top very carefully placed it in the center a usually try and position it right over the staples of that last petal to kind of disguise them a little bit and then just hold it in place for just a second. I find that if you just drop it in there and immediately remove your hand, it can have the tendency to tip over or dry at an odd angle, so if you just hold it in place for a second, it should be good. Those senators aren't like you were gonna accomplish is because I've been looking at the picture class for so long going on behind that those free bringing those in what's the thought you'd be bringing them wait them, you know we're sharing all the information the french scissors are not a necessity but they really are a nice little gizmo tohave in addition tio are flowers we want to finish them off with a little bit of foliage and you want them to be justice stunning as your flower and so the way we're going to accomplish that is by taking these eight and a half by eleven sheets and I'm going fold these and half vertically now we do have I think everyone at their work station has a little bone folder this's a great paper crafting tool it really is just this beautiful hard blade like object that helps you achieve really smooth creases whenever you're doing paper folding and for what we're going to be doing with the leaves that comes in really handy so take your sheets of green eight and a half by eleven paper and fold them in half lengthwise and then you just take your bone folder run it right along that crease it just makes it really sharp and needs gonna go ahead and do that with both of these how we doing with those stamens ladies those looking great coming together well yeah give everyone just a minute get those glued into the center I know when you're working with the glue gun you almost have to be ambidextrous because you're getting to the point where you're almost out of the blue and you have to shove another one of the glue sticks in there multitasking. Excellent, great. All right, so if you would please go ahead and take your their sheets a green paper and you're gonna fold them in half lengthwise on and then what we're going to do is we're going to cut out a really basic half teardrop shape, so I typically will start at the points up towards the top of my paper, completely free hand there's really? No need to have a template for this cutting it down so that basically just sort of rounds out at the base and go ahead and do that with both of your sheets of green folded card stock. Now, these would be lovely, as is as leaves, but I want to show you one additional step to add a little bit of extra dimension to these and we're going to accordion fold them when you accordion fold something, you're basically folding the piece of paper back and forth, but what we're going to do is do it on an angle so that it creates almost a chevron pattern of folds within our leaf. So we're going to take it at the base and I'm going to fold it up like this, and for each of my fault, I'm just going to take a quick run over that crease with the bone folder just to make it sharp. Then we're going to flip it over and I'm going to fold it in the opposite direction thus the accordion sort of fold and what I'm really looking for is to create this fold to be parallel with my previous fold and again running the bone folder over that crease and I'm just going to do this back and forth two or three times and each time you can see I'm making my fold over a little bit narrower than the one before this sort of gives thie idea that the folds or closer together as they get up towards the top of the leaf and then I'm going to fold it one more time and pressing get a little muscle in their toe get that crease down and so this is what it looks like once it's folded it's a little bit of an odd shape but once you open it up and then open it up in full you can see we've created this beautiful chevron pattern down the face of the leaf so I know I went through that quickly let's do it one more time together so I'm taking my my leaf shaped that's folded in half and I'm going to start at the not the pointed end but the fat rounded and and I'm going to fold it up on an angle and then I'm going to run my bone folder along that crease at that point I'm going tio flip it over how we doing? We get it okay great once you've done that first fold you kind of flip it over and you're gonna fold that paper back in the opposite direction trying to keep thiss new fold somewhat parallel to your previous one and you're going to continue that back and forth typically with this size leaf I find myself doing about four folds three to four all right opening it back up I always loved the reveal on these because they're so great and again getting that beautiful chevron pattern down the center of the leaf it works all right I love it thank you now typically what we would be doing at this stage of the game is applying a little bit of glue at the base of the leaves and sticking it directly on the underside of our flour but I'm going to ask you to hold off on that for the time being because these flowers that were creating right now we're going to incorporate into centerpieces for the next session so we're going to hold off on going down the leaves because we're going to do them a little bit differently but do that do you know if you're going to do a standalone flower he would typically just put a little glue on it and hold it underneath and these air just long enough so you can see that they peek out just beyond the pedals and at a really nice addition to that. So excellent. Well done, ladies. Don't come on, fools word to the wise. Thank you, madeleine he's the same way washington together. Yes. So all right, we've done these big, beautiful flowers. We're going to switch gears now and we're going to create something really beautiful, tiny and diminutive. So I am just going to set these aside and thank you for bearing with me at our rapid pace again. We're trying to squeeze a lot in here today. Now crepe paper I have to say crepe paper, I think, is one of those magical craft materials. It is in weight, inconsistencies, something of a hybrid between paper and fabric. During the machining process. It receives thousands and thousands of little cuts that give it this amazing sort of stretch and it becomes very sculptural. It comes in beautiful array of colors were working with some fantastic crepe paper that is german, and this is called a do blake crepe paper. It is basically two sheets of crepe paper that have been fused together, so they're different colors on either side, and it really adds this lovely added dimension. When you're building flowers, some of the contrasts are very subtle. I don't know if you can see this especially with this pink salmon it's just a little bit darker tone than it is on one side and the same with the green we've got a kelly green on one side a little bit more of a forest cream on the other and we're gonna be using these create a couple of small basic crepe paper flowers crepe paper flowers have a great history you find a lot in the forties and the fifties especially in the states that crepe paper flowers were very popular craft great paper in general very inexpensive people were using it for all sorts of decorations they were creating streamers they were actually because of its fabric like quality were sewing it together to create costumes for halloween zin masquerade balls but the quality of flower that you can achieve with this I think is really fantastic and I'll show you why in just a minute because you're going to get into some of this stretching and bending of the paper and it hold that shape so nicely in addition to the crepe paper that we're going to be using today we're going to be using floral wire stem tmz this is basically floral wire that has been wrapped very tightly in cloth I don't even think that on camera you'd be able to catch that because it is so tight they come in various waits this is a very thin wait weir and especially for the small size flowers that we were going to be using today it works perfectly so what we're going to do is let's start with one of our pieces of wire and we're simply going to match up the ends and fold it in half and then we're going to cut it in half creating two pieces standard length on a floral wire is eighteen inches you can find these at most craft and hobby supply stores and floral supply stores we'll just set those aside and we're going to start with a small flower that almost looks like a hybrid between I would say a carnation and dandy lion and maybe even a sweet william um can and fluffed out there a little bit should get a better look at him um and what we're going to do is this type of crepe paper comes and what are called folds you'll find some crepe paper in a larger scale that will come on a roll we're working with the folds today and basic measurements on these it's typically about four inches across and I've just sort of built that into some of the the dimensions of the flowers just because it seems to work well but what you're going to do is take your pencil in your straight edge from one of the short end of your crepe paper you're going to measure two inches and just put a little pencil mark and do that on either side and also I'm sorry do the two inch mark and also the one inch mark so you're creating two lines there using your ruler connect the two marks that you've just made and draw very light lines in pencil these were just going to be cutting guides for us don't worry about the pencil marks showing up in the final flower they're not going to be visible we're going to be introducing our third style of shears today that we're going to be working with these air pinking shears you find these quite often in in sewing rooms the pinking shears is known for its zigzag edge and I am going to use that to cut right down the center so the one inch mark I'm going to cut down the center and I know we're sharing these in the studio so I will cut this and pass them along you do that we're only gonna be making one cut with the pinking shears so let me have passed those off to you rachel and then the two inch mark that we made there were going to go ahead and cut that just with our regular pair of shears so you open it up and you've created this beautiful strip of crepe paper with that upper zigzag edge and we're going to lay it flat and we're just going to give it a little bit of stretch you're going toe just let your fingers down on it stretch that paper up just a tiny bit to increase the length of it and you'll see for the most part I've stretched it out it holds it holds that stretch, go ahead and do that with both of your strips. Great! No! Once you've done that were going toe fold them back up, we're going to bring the two ends together and then fold them in half two or three times, and I'm really doing this just so that I can now go in and cut a syriza slits from that upper zigzag edge about three quarters of the way down my strip, so I'm going to take this and little snip there, I'm going to do this maybe every quarter of an inch this is going to help create the individual pedals for our flower, and when I open it back up, you can see you've got all of this beautiful fringe. Now I'm going to go ahead and repeat that with the second strip. Once I have folded and a half, two or three times taking the sharp paris years shears, snipping it down about two thirds of the way about every corner to a half inch, you can even vary it a little bit when you unfold your strip, you may find there's some areas that are a little wider and might need and extra little snip like you can see there's a piece here and going to go ahead and just add an extra little snit down the center of that go ahead and had a little extra snip here. All right, so we've got these two long lovely fringe strips with our zigzag upper edge we're now going to take one of our floral wire stems and this is a half piece on day I am going to full that in half again this time there were not going to cut it we're just going to keep it that double length so it creates a little bit of that loop at the very top good she can see what I've done here just folded that piece a floral wire in half so now to begin constructing our flour you want to have your tacky glue at the ready? Um, again, we talked about this a little bit in the previous session tacky lou it's really a standard white glue, but it does have a little extra tack to it. I think that it tends to hold the paper a little bit quicker and works really well in conjunction with the crepe paper, so we're going to take our strip and these first three pedals we're just going to kind of bunch them up together there's really no rhyme or reason to it you're just sort of taking them and bundling them together what we're going to do then is take our piece of floral wire that we folded in half and we're going to slip it down over the top between the third and the fourth pedal, so you've kind of hooked right over your strip there, and then you're going to slowly bunch crimp your crepe paper strip around that floral wire, and you're just really doing it in a regular pattern. It might like when we were rolling the stamen for the larger flowers get away from you occasionally, not a problem. Just take your time. You can only start over on this step nothing's been glued in place, so we don't need to worry about that. I'm gonna flip it over to show you, as I've been winding it around the stem, more or less will end up in the center of the bottom there and it's just bunched tightly in a little ball. Now to secure these in place, we're gonna take our second piece of floral wire and we're going tio hold it in our hands so that the stem is sticking straight up and our little flat bottom is there. We're going to take our floor wire and we're going to wrap it around the base. Of our bunch of crepe paper about an eighth of an inch from the bottom, and you're going to twist it tightly on one side and then you're gonna wrap those two ends a back around to the opposite side twisted again a few more times you're going to end up with a couple of long tails as you can see here, we're just going to allow those to hang down and we're going to going to incorporate them into the stem so you don't need to worry about trimming them. How we doing in the in the audience? I know this is a little bit more tedious than our larger flowers, but it's really it's a completely different technique and material we got him, so they're all pretty secure. Excellent. Ok, now that you've got that first one under your belt, let's, go ahead and repeat that with the sec get one so again, you want to take one of your large eighteen inch lengths of floral wire folded in half, trim it into two pieces, take one of those halves, essentially falling it down into fourths but not cutting this one kind of leaving it as a little bit of a hook there, taking the the second strip of the crepe paper, we're going to gather together those first three leaves or it could be four leaves honestly, no hard rule there slipping the floral wire up over the top of the strip, down between the next two pedals and then again pinching and gathering in a regular fashion. We're going to gather that crepe paper strip all the way around the flower. What does your inspiration come from to sort of notice things in nature or whatever and world does it automatically spark an idea of how you can re create it with more trial and error? And great question? I mean, honestly, I, um, one of my great passions is collecting vintage crafting and how to books, and so I'll spend an extraordinary amount of time kind of pouring through those looking for different skills and techniques that might not otherwise be familiar with that I might not be familiar with and then trying to master them on my own and then trying this in some ways, mortham, to apply to whatever project it is that I'm working on with the crepe paper flowers in particular, there are people that have mastered this beyond anything I think I have ever done, and they create flowers that are so lifelike they actually look like the rial daffodils or daisies or roses and it's a good a practice thing to do to go through and do that you might find that you love it, but one of the things I also really like about this process is, once you've got these basic construction techniques down, you really can create any type of flower you want creating your own sort of fantasy flowers or hybrids of flowers you might see in your garden picking colors that might not actually exist in nature and creating flowers from them just to create something beautiful and unique for your home or for a party or event. We're actually a little bit later in our next session is going to be taking some of these and making boudin ears and course sasha's out of them, so kind of showing you a different way to style them. So we've got this second peace now, and I'm just going to take my little second piece of wire, wrap it around the base about an eighth of an inch from the bottom give it a good twist, wrap those two around to the other side and twisted again again, allowing those tale ends just to kind of hang down and they're going to become part of the base.

Class Description

From making your own paper to marbling and stamping to sculpting hand-crafted objects, paper crafting is an incredible way to express yourself. Join Robert Mahar to explore everything this simple, sophisticated art form has to offer.

You’ll embrace your inner recycler as you learn to create paper pulp and form it into sheets of handmade paper. You’ll also explore the Japanese art of suminagashi and use this centuries-old technique to create gorgeous, marbled paper. You’ll learn basic stamping and patterning techniques that add extra flair to any project. You’ll dive into creating three-dimensional paper crafts as well, from hand-crafted flowers to papier-mache projects to other decorative and functional objects.

Whether you’re looking to create handmade gifts to share with friends or to add new paper craft goods to your Etsy® store, you’ll leave this course equipped and inspired to create dozens of new projects.

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Robert Mahar - Paper Flower Directions.pdf

Robert Mahar - Paper Garland Directions.pdf

Robert Mahar - Paper Marbling Directions.pdf

free bonus materials

Robert Mahar - Course Supplies List.pdf

Robert Mahar - Syllabus.pdf

Robert Mahar - Letters Sample.PDF

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

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user 1400000665814257

This class if filled with new and fun ways to use the paper that we have in stock. In addition, the paper technique that utilizes Suminagashi Ink is mind blowing! Anyone who loves to create beautiful things will enjoy this class. Robert is one who is an exceptional instructor, in that when he is demonstrating a new technique, he has an ability to use clear concise language. I have enjoyed the class, and plan to use the gorgeous floral pieces in my studio and home, along with creating a lovely party. Thank you!

a Creativelive Student

Really enjoyed watching this two day Paper Crafting course with Robert Mahar. It was full great paper techniques and inspiration. Roberts has such a calm and positive teaching style. Watching him work through step by step of each project you really pick up lots of wonderful tips and tricks of the trade. Highly recommend it.

Holly Herick

Robert Mahar is an excellent teacher with many great examples on paper crafting. Robert has encouraged me to continue working on my sculpted watercolor paper flowers—now I have a bunch of new tips and tricks to try. This class is well worth the price