Fabric flower tutorial

A few people asked how to make the flower on yesterday's fabric origami box. This is an easy craft project that's a good way to use up scraps. Use these flowers to make hair pins and boutonnieres, top gifts, decorate napkin rings, tote bags, wedding aisles, you name it.

You'll need some stiffened fabric pieces (see this post for the how to), a pencil, paper, scissors, needle, thread, buttons, and an iron.

With a pencil, sketch flower shapes on the back of your fabric pieces. You'll need three sizes of flowers, so make each one progressively larger. If you plan to make zillions of flowers, it might be good to draw yourself some paper templates to make your life easier. Don't worry about making perfect petals. This is a forgiving project.

Cut out each flower piece. Then pinch little creases between the petals, overlapping them very slightly to add dimension.

Press the creases with an iron. While each petal is still warm, roll the edges back to make a pretty petal shape. The fabric is very soft and pliable when it's warm, but after it cools a couple seconds, it's crisp again. If you're unsatisfied with a petal, just iron it again and reshape it.

Layer three flower shapes in graduated sizes, staggering the petals. Stitch them together with a button in the center.

I love how sturdy these are—crisp and flexible, all at the same time. They won't tear like paper, and they have a fabric texture. Nifty!
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