Punched Paper Flowers

MARCH 1997


From Maureen Williams

Very realistic flowers can be made
using ordinary coloured photocopy
paper or notelet paper which is available
in a variety of shaded colours.
Although this can be a very time
consuming exercise, the end result
is well worth the effort.
Using these delicate little flowers
takes your creation from something
that anyone can buy the pieces
to achieve to that something special
which only a few have the patience to do.
See paper flowers on cupid rose egg.

The basic procedure for making flowers involves shaping punched paper in different ways depending on the desired result then gluing the "petals" together in the flower shape. Let nature be your guide - examine how different flowers are formed. Also note how the petals are located - do they over-lap each other or are they spaced evenly with another row in between the spaces, etc. Look in flower books - those with drawn diagrams of flowers are better than actual photographs of flowers.


Petals can be shaped in different ways using different tools depending on the type of flower you are making. Some petals are smooth and cupped, others may be crinkled, the edges may roll in towards the centre or outwards in other flowers.

If you are shaping smooth petals it is best to use a piece of vinyl place mat as there is a little bit of give in the surface but not enough to make the petal crinkle.

A thicker (") foam (a computer mouse pad is ideal) allows you to apply more pressure when you want to make crinkled petals.


    Punched paper in desired shapes and colours.
    3" flat head nails to use as mini turn-tables.
    (These should be filed smooth on top)
    Piece of styrene to stand the nails in.
    Tacky glue. (I use Aleene's Tacky in the gold bottle)
    Fine point tweezers.
    Leather tool for shaping the petals. (You can also use paper tole tools)
    Piece of computer mouse pad or similar.
    Ball stylus for shaping petals
    Piece of vinyl place mat to shape the petals on. (or use the palm of your hand)
    Chalks or water soluble pencils (Optional - for shading flowers.)

The roses used on Cupid's Rose Trellis are made from paper using a " single hole punch and then sprayed with porcelain spray to stiffen the flowers..

For each flower you will need 6 ?petals?. Use a very small dob of tacky glue to secure a base petal to a nail turntable. Use a leather tool to shape the other five petals. Place a petal on the foam mouse pad and press down on the left hand side (LHS) of the petal and move the leather tool across the petal, thus creasing it at the top. This may take a little practice to get the petal creasing sufficiently. Don't worry about the petals being uniform as nature isn't perfect!


If you want shaded flowers the petals should be coloured using chalks before you shape the petals. Use a cotton bud to apply the chalk which should be brushed lightly over each petal - it isn't necessary to be very particular when doing this. A fringed edge on a flower is done after the flower has been constructed using water soluble pencils (or paint) and a very fine brush. Use a very small amount of colour on the brush and apply to the edge of each petal.


Use fine point tweezers to pick up the petals at the top, being careful not to squash the creases. Dip the botton smoother part of the petal into tacky glue and position on the base petal.

Continue overlapping each petal over the preceding petal. With the last petal you need to overlap the fourth petal and tuck the other side of the petal under the first petal. Adjust petals as required. (The nail turntable makes it easier to construct the flower as you can turn it as you add the petals but they could also be made by securing the base petal to a piece of plastic or similar. You need to be able to slip a craft knife under the base petal to release the flower once it is dry.) When the flower is dry, place a very small spot of glue in the centre and add crumbed foam for the stamens.

To stiffen the petals, spray with 5 - 6 light coats of Porcelain spray available from your ceramic dealer.

VARIATION: Try adding another row of smaller petals inside your original flower (three petals will probably be enough) before adding the foam for the stamens to achieve a double look.
Glue a 2.5cm (1 " ) piece of Jap cord in the centre at the bottom of a flat petal. When dry, roll tightly around tweezers then wrap a flat green petal around the bottom for a caylx. The length of the cord can be trimmed later as required to fit into the flower design.
5 PETAL FLOWERS (these shapes are from a special punch)

Fold a piece of kitchen paper in half and damp thoroughly. Tip a few petals onto the damp paper and fold over thus damping both sides of the petal.

Place a damp flower shape on a piece of vinyl placemat then, using a medium ball stylus, press down on each of the five petals to cup them. Flip the flower over and use a smaller ball stylus to press down in the centre of the shaped petals. This will make the petals stand up.

Use a flat back rhinestone or a no hole pearl as a centre for the flower.

VARIATIONS: Use smaller 5 petal shapes in a contrasting colour to make double flowers. You can also use the tiny 5 petal shape as a flower centre.


Lichen (dry seaweed) which is available from model railway supply shops is ideal to make small bushes and trees and comes in a variety of colours ranging from bright, light green to a mint green and dark green through to autumn colours. For flowering trees cut up small scraps of velvet or bunka into tiny pieces (don't sneeze!). Use small twigs from the garden, brush thin PVA glue on the tips and then dip into the velvet. For a more realistic look, try using a light and dark colour rather than just one colour. Crumbed foam can also be used to make trees using the above method.

Here's a web site with more information about paper flowers and a link with templates for leaves.
Flower Instructions

A suggestion from Linda.....
  • Plants can be found in the aquarium section of pet stores
    they usually have a variety of different mosses etc. It is easy to change any of the colors with an air brush.