If you’re planning to pick up flowers this Valentine’s Day, you’re probably going with roses. It’s the most popular choice for the holiday, and for good reason — roses are classic. You can’t go wrong. The only negatives are that florists know the stems are in high demand and mark up prices, and no matter how beautiful they are, real flowers die. Why not opt for a paper, Star Wars-themed solution? You can craft lovely, personalized roses from the pages of comic books, magazines, or books. Crafting the faux flowers just takes a few supplies and patience.
What You’ll Need:
- Hot glue gun, glue
- Floral tape
- Faux rose leaves
- Floral wire, 22 gauge
- Star Wars comics, magazines, or book pages
- Skewer or dowel rod
- Fake rose and file folder/card stock or existing rose template
- Mod Podge
- Paint brush
Once you’ve gathered all of the supplies, you need to create a template for all the rose petals or use an existing one. I chose a large fake rose to peel apart, and I traced the different layers onto a file folder to make a template — labeling them as I went. You can download my templates here (at the bottom of the photo set) and print them onto card stock. The layers are numbered from the bottom up.
Next, it’s time to choose comic book pages, Star Wars Insider pages, or book pages to cut your rose petals from. These can be comics you don’t need any longer because you have the trades, comics or magazines you found on sale at conventions (I specifically buy cheap comics for crafting), or a Star Wars book you’ve already read. I chose Star Wars: Legacy #50 because the palette featured a lot of red. You can definitely be more selective based on character.
Trace the templates onto the pages you picked and cut them out. Keep in mind a couple of things when you’re choosing pages: you’ll see the front and back on the rose, so only cut out petals with images on both sides. You don’t want advertising on your rose. Save the coolest images for the inner petals where they’ll be seen. Keep the petals in order, bottom to top, as you cut them out.
The rose needs a stem. Cut 12 inches of floral wire and straighten as best as you can. Add two fake leaves two inches from the top of your stem. Put a dab of hot glue where the bottom of the fake leaves meets the stem and secure the leaves with floral tape. Wind the tape down in a spiral to cover the entire stem. Pull the tape tight to ensure it sticks
Stack on the layers of petals from bottom to top, adding a dab of hot glue underneath each layer and letting it dry for a few seconds as you go. You’ll have a stack of petals that looks like the above photo.
Now it’s time to start styling the petals, layer by layer, starting with the most inner layer. You’ll rinse and repeat these steps for each petal on every layer: curl the tips of each petal back by gently wrapping it around a skewer or dowel rod and pressing the paper down. Once all petals on the layer are curled, lift them up one at a time and glue them to the layer above it. You want to fold the petals up to make them look as natural as possible and apply the glue wherever makes sense — it could be at the base of the next layer, it could be in the middle of the petal above it. Use a small drop of hot glue and press the two petals/layers together for a few seconds.
Once all the petals are curled and glued, cut any excess wire coming from the top of the rose. All the flower needs now is a bud for the center. To make this, cut a strip from your paper material that’s ten inches long and one inch wide. Roll the strip into a tight circle and pull the inside end up to form a spiral. Once it looks enough like a rose bud, secure the spiral in a few places with tiny drops of hot glue so that it doesn’t unwind. When it’s dry, apply hot glue around the bottom of the spiral and carefully insert into the middle of your rose. After the bud has dried, you can add single petals throughout the rose if you see any holes (I added one to the inner layer).
Tada! The entire project took me about an hour and a half.
You can use the optional supplies I listed to further dress up your flowers. Paint a thin line of Mod Podge around the edges of petals and sprinkle on glitter accents or tie ribbons around the base of the rose (bonus — the ribbon covers up any visible hot glue).
If you make any paper roses or have any questions, please reach out to me on Twitter. I’m looking forward to seeing your creations!