Saturday, 2 August 2008

Casting flowers

Prima flowers cost a fortune here. Even buying small amounts, e.g. 10 flowers for £1 (or $2). Maybe I am just tight fisted with my money but for tiny flowers made of paper I feel it is a bit expensive. I don't use them very often either but they are in vogue at the moment and they look nice on cute cards. So, what could I do about it? Thinking about what Prima flowers are (moulded paper flowers) I figured out a way to make my own. I had tried out some paper casting with toilet tissue recently (see the pictures of the decorative squares) and thought that it might be the way forward. Take a look here for some instructions on paper casting.

I used a Prima flower as a template and drew around it onto some tracing paper. I transferred the shape to some rubber (used for making hand carved stamps) and carved out the shape. As Prima flowers have rises and dips over their surface I took that into account and carved deeper areas near the tips of the petals. The deeper the dip the higher the rise on the final flower. I also carved from the tip of the petal towards the centre of the flower. That way the flowers look like they have veins due to the valleys created by the carving tool. Then I took some mulberry paper and used the paper casting technique to form the flower. Lay the paper flat over the carved rubber flower shape and use a stiff, damp brush to gently tap the paper into the mould. You don't have to worry about cutting the paper to shape, that happens once the shape has dried. I used three or four layers of mulberry paper to make my flowers. So far none of them have separated or fallen to pieces. Once dry just trim away the excess paper and, hey presto, a flower.

1 comment:

Seth said...

So cool that you just decided to make your own. They look great and the decorative square castings are really special. Toilet tissue? Who knew!