She showed me how to make them, and she showed me the blog that taught her how to make them. That was in April or so, and come June, did I remember how to make them? No. Could I find the blog anywhere online? Nope. But I wanted to make them to decorate the rehearsal dinner for my brother's wedding, so I experimented a little and finally figured it out. Since I couldn't find the original tutorial online, and as I am in the process of making more napkin flowers for a friend's wedding this weekend, I thought I'd offer up my own tutorial.
Step 1. Gather supplies. You will need:
- Two sets of napkins: one pack of dinner-sized, and one pack of dessert-sized. Chinet and Vanity Fair brands work well for the larger size. I like to use white for the larger size and yellow for the smaller size.
- 22-gauge floral wire. You can get this in the fake flower section of any craft store, like Michael's or Jo-Ann's.
- Pliers that will clip wire. I used my jewelry pliers, but any cutting pliers will work.
Step 2. Cut lengths of wire.
- I recommend cutting lengths of wire about eight inches long. It doesn't matter if they're longer, but the shorter ones will be hard to wrap around the flower. Cut as many wires as the number of flowers you plan to make.
|My wire, all cut into nice pieces|
Step 3. Make a flower!
- Lay out three large napkins on top of one another; then lay out two smaller napkins centered on top of the big ones.
- Fold the napkins like an accordion, creasing each edge as you go, until it looks like this:
- Now you need to trim the ends into a rounded shape. It's easiest to do this one set at a time. So take the yellow napkins off of the white ones and press them back into their accordion folds. You will cut all the edges at once.
|Take off the yellow set and fold them back into their accordion shape|
|Holding the ends all together, trim them into a rounded shape|
- Once both ends of the yellow set are trimmed, set it aside and trim the ends of the white set of napkins the same way you trimmed the yellow.
|Trim the white napkins the same as you did the yellow. You can see the trimmed yellow ones in the background.|
- Now that all the ends are trimmed, fit the yellow napkins and the white napkins back together like so:
- Fold everything back into its accordion shape and pinch the middle. You will now wrap the middle with wire to keep everything together.
- When you wrap the wire, you will want to make a little loop at the back of your flower with the wire. That way, you will have a way to tie your flower to something-- either a garland (like in the very first photo) or if you are going to be using the flowers as centerpieces (like my friend will at her wedding), you will be able to tie the flower to a small pebble so it won't blow away or move easily.
- Begin wrapping the wire. When you have used up about half of the wire, make a small loop at the back of your flower, and continue wrapping until all the wire has been used up. Make sure the wire is nice and tight.
|Beginning to wrap the wire|
|Leaving some wire sticking up to twist the loop|
|Just give the sticking-up-part a good twist or two, and you will have a nice loop.|
- Your flower should look like this now:
- It's time to ruffle it up so it looks like a flower! Work slowly and carefully so you don't rip a layer. One layer at a time, pull each layer up and toward the center of the flower. Don't be afraid to pull it until it is nice and snug!
|Pulling up the first layer|
- Keep pulling up layers one at a time until the whole flower is ruffled up!
|One yellow side ruffled up|
|Now both yellow sides|
|Starting on the white part|
- Fluff and adjust the petals of your flower until it looks just the way you want.