So many of you are choosing to make your own DIY bridal bouquets these days. Just type the words ‘hand made bridal bouquet’ into your search engine and you’ll see a myriad of beautiful blooms made from all manner of materials.
Lets face it real flowers not only cost a fortune… they die so quickly! Over the next couple of months I’m going to be putting together several tutorials on how to make various different flowers that can be included in your own bouquet or as a table display to make your day extra special.
The great thing about making your own flowers is that you’re not restricted by colour. You can make your flowers any colour you desire in order to truly make them your own!
First things first, the colour scheme! If you’ve already started to plan your wedding, you probably already have a good idea of the colour scheme you want. If not, this is where the really fun part begins! It’s a good idea to put together a mood board of inspiring photos. You’ll probably immediately start to see a pattern in the colours you choose.
I love putting together colour schemes and for me there’s nothing more exciting than rummaging through my balls of wool and seeing those scrummy hues sing. Over the next few months I intend to make two different bouquets, using the colours illustrated above and below.
It just so happens that these are my favourite colours, so I have loads of wool I can use!
Now onto the exciting part making the felted flowers . . .
Felt Rose Tutorial
For the Flower You Will Need:
- Woolen jumper or cardigan shrunk in the washing machine. For some of you this won’t be difficult! For those of you who have never shrunk a jumper before, pop it in the washing machine on the hottest cycle possible.
- Alternatives to the shrunken jumper: Acrylic felt sheet or merino wool roving to make your own felt sheet.
- Tailors chalk
- Fabric scissors
- Coloured merino roving of your choice to embellish your rose petals.
- Something circular to draw around. I’ve used a spice bowl approximately 5 cm in diameter.
- Clover needle felting tool for three needles
- Three felting needles
- Needle felting pad
- Strong sewing thread – I used stranded embroidery thread
- Sharp sewing needle
For the Stem You Will Need:
- Green merino wool roving
- 2 pipe cleaners
- Green sewing thread
- Sharp sewing needle
- Bubble wrap
- Access to hot water
- Washing up liquid
- Kitchen tray
- Single felting needle
- Needle felting pad
How to make
Lay out your shrunken and dried jumper. Use your circular object to draw seven circles with your tailors chalk and cut them out.
Don’t worry if they’re not completely perfect circle….mine are far from perfect!
I lay my circles one by one on my pad to embellish with needle felting.
I’ve used my clover needle felting tool to stab my wool thoroughly all round the edge. I’ve worked both the front and back of my circle several times.
Cut your circles in half so you have 14 semi-circles. Using a running stitch, sew half way along the straight edge of your first semi-circle. Overlap the second half way across the first. Continue your running stitch through both layers until you reach the centre and add the next. Gather your petals slightly whilst you stitch and continue until all your semi-circles are stitched together. These will form the petals of your rose.
It should now look like this.
Starting at one end, roll your petals up ensuring your edges remain close together and aligned. I’m using a sharp needle and embroidery thread to stitch them together as I roll. Stitch from the outside and out of the centre all the way round, making sure you stitch the centre securely.
Hey presto, One completed rose head! Now onto the making of the stem, or if you prefer you can leave the rose head how it is, it is completely up to you! . . .
For my short stems I use two green pipe cleaners twisted together. I use green just in case any of the pipe cleaner shows through my wool. It will be less noticeable. If I were to make longer stems or make heavy rose heads I would use three or four pipe cleaners twisted together for added strength.
Wrap green merino wool roving around your pipe cleaners and stab it with your felting needle. This will prevent your wool from unraveling.
To make the sepal – Lay out five tufts of the same green coloured merino wool in a star shape on a sheet of bubble wrap on top of your kitchen tray. They should overlap slightly in the middle.
Add a ring of wool to the centre. Add a drizzle of washing up liquid and saturate with hot water.
Roll up the bubble wrap and secure with a couple of elastic bands. Roll this backwards and forwards about 50 times. Unwrap, stretch the felt back into shape and roll the ends of the sepal between your fingers. Re- roll another fifty times. In order to quicken the felting process, dunk your sepal into a bowl of hot water. Rinse thoroughly and allow to dry.
Needle felt the un-felted wool of the stem to the centre of the sepal to attach the two together.
Take your stem back to your tray and drizzle the length with washing up liquid and hot water to saturate it. Roll the stem between your palms until the wool shrinks around the pipe cleaners. Rinse thoroughly and lay out to dry.
Sew your stem and sepal to the bottom of your rose head and your done!
There are other ways in which you can make your beautiful rose head. Why not try making your own felt by wet felting roving fibres together? Making your own felt gives you the advantage of really being able to go to town with your colour scheme, you can also add patterns to your petals or even include lustrous silk details as I’ve done with shimmering mulberry and tussah silks.
You can also use ready made felt sheets to make your rose for a quicker alternative . . .
After cutting my felt circles into halves, I’ve used a simple blanket stitch around the edges to embellish the rose.
The roses below were made from plain, simple peach coloured acrylic felt sheet. It took me about fifteen minutes max to make each rose head and they look spectacular!