Good day everyone—Becky here, your humble editor—and as promised in our fall issue, today and tomorrow I’ll be showing you how to make several of the flowers in the floral cornucopia I created on page 5. In this first post, I will be covering the wired/inked leaves, sunflowers and asters, and tomorrow we’ll make chrysanthemums, spider mums, queen anne’s lace and daisies. I’ll also share with you how I created the cornucopia shape itself – you won’t believe how easy it is! Oh, and I heard there’s a “fruity” little bonus design on tomorrow’s post, too!
The flowers were created using a combination of metal dies, cutting files, and free-hand cutting. Where dies are used, I will provide you with a link to the specific design and manufacturer that I used. Be sure to download the free cutting files at the bottom of this post. Note that many of the dies I used can be substituted for other dies and punches you might already have, and many of them can even be drawn and cut by hand.
You will need these supplies to complete all of the tutorials (or substitutes of your choice):
- Thin scrap chipboard
- Thick and thin wet glue
- 5/8” or 3/4” wood ball/bead (with or without holes)
- Paper taped floral wire
- Small wire cutters
- Cardstock (off white, butter yellow, gold, dark orange, plum, teal, dark red, burgundy)
- Script patterned paper
- 1/8” and 1/4” hole punches
- 1/2” and 1” circle punches
- Pearl head pins
- Floral stamens
- Flower Soft (brown and black)
- Tim Holtz Distress inks or inks of your choice
DIES: Tim Holtz Tattered Leaves, Spellbinders Fall Foilage, Cheery Lynn Embellishment 1 die, Spellbinders Blossom 2, Spellbinders Jewel Flowers, Cheery Lynn Build-A-Flower 1, Spellbinders Petite Scallop Nested Circle Lg, Cheery Lynn Embellishment 2 dies, Martha Stewart Cornflower Punch
Here are a few design notes before you begin:
- Inking the edges of all of the petals and flower components is optional, but it does give the flowers and leaves a lot of depth and shading.
- You can use a glue gun in lieu of wet adhesive, but the glue gun won’t be quite as forgiving. With wet adhesive, you have time to make adjustments and “slide” things around. The glue gun is great for the final assembly of the flowers into the cornucopia.
- If you cannot find wooden balls, a tight ball of tinfoil works good in a pinch. Cover it with a scrap of copy paper so that glue will have something to stick to.
- A good source for scrap chipboard is the back of a notepad.
- Glass microbeads or flocking are good substitutes for the Flower Soft.
Let’s get started with today’s flowers!
Okay, so leaves aren’t really a flower, but they are an important part of the cornucopia design. For my design, I created about a dozen leaves in the style I am about to show you below. I then die cut piles of solid leaves from two shades of green, plus yellow, red and orange, all in a variety of sizes and shapes. I used these as fillers when I created the cornucopia.
Die cut two leaves from the same die, reversing the paper on one of them. It is important to reverse the paper on one of the die cuts so that both pieces will align when glued together. For my leaves, I used a script patterned paper.
Trim a 6” piece of floral wire. Turn one of the leaves over to the back and run a bead of wet adhesive down the center. Lay the floral wire in the glue and press gently.
Apply wet adhesive over the back of the leave and over the wire. With the pattern facing out, glue the matching leave to the wire leaf and press them together firmly to sandwich the wire in between both pieces.
Using a inking sponge and a variety of inks (red, orange, yellow), ink the outer edges of the leaf and swirl your sponge towards the center. Overlapping ink colours will give you a lot of depth.
Flower 1: ASTER
Using light yellow cardstock, die cut one medium stamen shape from Cheery Lynn Build-A-Flower 1. Ink the tips on both sides. Ink a white premade stamen with yellow ink (or use a yellow stamen).
Using plum cardstock, punch out five flowers from a Martha Stewart Cornflower Punch. Ink the tips with dark purple ink. Punch a 1/16” hole in the center of each flower.
With fine-tipped scissors, snip into the center of the die cut yellow stamen and cut a circle from the middle.
Wrap the stamen die cut around the inked stamen and secure it with a dab of glue.
With fine-tipped scissors, snip into the center of two of the cornflowers and cut out a circle.
Glue one end of the cut out flower to the wrapped stamen. Continue wrapping it around the stamen and secure the opposite end with glue. Repeat with the second cut-out flower directly after the first one.
Using your thumb nail, curl up the petals of the remaining three cornflower shapes. Stack the three together, offsetting the petals, and glue them together. Glue the wrapped piece to the center of the three stacked pieces.
Gently pull down the plum petals from the wrapped piece. Spread apart the petals of the three stacked pieces to fluff up the aster.
Flower 2: SUNFLOWER
Mix equal parts of black and brown Flower Soft (about a tablespoon of each).
Punch/die cut two 2”, two 1½” and two 1” circles from thin chipboard scraps. Glue each same size circles together, then stack and glue them together with the largest circle on the bottom.
Cover the chipboard stack with an even coat of thick, wet glue.
Cover the glue with the mix of Flower Soft. Press gently to adhere it to the glue and set it aside to dry (do not shake off excess yet).
From medium yellow cardstock, die cut two #4 and two #3 die using the Spellbinders Blossom 2 nested die set (#5 is the largest and #1 is the smallest). Punch or cut a hole in the center of all three pieces.
Using fine-tipped scissors, cut into each of the petals all the way to the hole in the center. When you’re finished, you should have 20 medium and 20 large petals. For added depth, ink the edges of each petal with a dark gold or yellow ink.
Using your thumb nail or the side of a barrel pen, curl half of the petals up and the other half down, in a random order.
Punch/die cut a 2” circle from a scrap of yellow cardstock. Beginning with the 10 smaller petals, glue them around the outside perimeter of the 2” cardstock circle, alternating between petals curled up and petals curled down. You’ll use between 18 and 20 of the smaller petals, depending on how much you overlap them.
Continue with 10 of the larger petals and glue them behind the first row of petals, alternating again. Finish the final row with the remaining 10 petals.
Tap off the excess Flower Soft from the chipboard center. Adhere it to the center of the rows of petals. Die cut two sunflower leaves from dark green cardstock using the free cutting file (the download is at the end of the post). Alternatively, you can hand cut the leaves or use a leaf die that you already have on hand.
Click HERE to download the free die cutting file. It includes several leaf shapes, spiral design, and bonus fruit shapes. The zip file contains a pdf preview and a .dxf and .svg cutting files, compatible with Silhouette, Bosskut, Pazzle, Cricut Explore and other leading electronic die cutting machines that can read these file formats.
That’s it for Day 1! I hope you’ll stop by tomorrow for four more tutorials and a wrap up on how to create the cornucopia shape. See you then!