Alternative Valentine’s bouquet…

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A handmade gift for any occasion always tugs on the heart strings so when better to show the one you love just how much you care by making them some flowers for Valentine’s Day. Not only does it allow you to avoid the last minute petrol station blooms but they will last forever as a permanent reminder of just what a top dog you are! We all know how much I love to make fabric blooms but today I thought I’d share a step by step, in collaboration with DYLON, to help you create your own hand dyed fabric roses…

What you’ll need…

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– White cotton fabric & something to protect your table

DYLON fabric dyes & fabric paint

– Water in spray bottle (I reused an old bottle of cleaning fluid)

– Rubber gloves & washing up bowl with water

– Paint brush

– Wooden skewers/Florist wire

– Needle & thread

– Scissors & hot glue gun

 

To make the rose…

Step 1…

Protect your table – I used some spare bubble wrap I had – & lay your fabric on top. Take your spray bottle & spray water over the fabric. The more water you add the more the dye will be absorbed & spread & the greater the colours will blend together.

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Step 2…

Choose your dye colours. I used a combination of Powder Pink, Tulip Red & Burlesque Red of DYLON dye for a real Valentine’s look. I emptied a small amount of each dye into a pot for ease of use & labelled them as once out of the packet they look surprisingly similar!

Step 3…

Sprinkle the dye over the fabric to achieve your desired look. I played around with sprinkling it evenly & mixing all clours, sprinkling in clusters & leaving some of the fabric dye free to experiment with different effects.

If you want the colours to blend you can add more water at this stage.

I also experimented with adding water and dye to the bubble wrap/table protector & then laying the fabric on top.

Step 4…

Rinse your fabric in water – making sure to wear the rubber gloves – & hang to dry. I used a spare clothes dryer with newspaper underneath to catch any drips.

If you want the fabric to retain the patterning along with a white background, don’t rinse but instead hang the fabric directly.

TOP TIP: have your drying rack set up & close by before you rinse your fabric so that you arent dripping fabric across the floor or trying to pick things up with dye stained gloves!

Step 5…

Once the fabric is dry you are ready to start making your flowers!

Cut the fabric into strips, mine ranged from approximately 6 – 12 cm in width.

TOP TIP: if you find the edge of the fabric you should be able to make a small cut & then rip the fabric into parallel strips.

Step 6…

Fold under approximately 1.5cm at the small end of your fabric strip, fold the strip in half lengthways – matching the raw edges – & pin in place.

Thread your needle & sew a rough running stitch along the raw edge, taking out your pins as you go. Fold under another 1.5cm at the other end & stitch into place.

TOP TIP: don’t knot you thread at the end of your stitching as we want the fabric to gather to create the flower shape.

Step 7…

Pull on your thread & slide the fabric along it to gather it together. Then begin to roll the fabric up to make your rose shape.

The more gathered the fabric is the more open & loose your rose shape will be.

TOP TIP: have less gathers in the centre & gradually add them in as you roll the fabric to give a more natural rose look.

Once the fabric is rolled together & you’ve checked that have achieved the desired shape, stitch from one side of the flower to the other until the fabric is held securely in place & then you should have your rose!

 

To make the leaves…

Step 1…

Spray your fabric once again with water & then apply your green DYLON fabric paint with your paintbrush. I wanted a hand painted, watercolour look to my fabric so deliberately left some areas less dense in colour. Then hang to dry.

Step 2…

Once the fabric is dry create a template for the leaf shape, pin to your fabric & cut around using fabric scissors. Pierce the centre so that there is a hole for the stem to fit through.

Step 3…

Cut small triangles out along the edges of the leaves to give a textured edge, if desired.

TOP TIP: If cutting multiple leaves, pin them all together before snipping the edges all at once.

Rose assembly…

Step 1…

Insert your wooden skewer into the bottom of the rose – at least 0.5cm in – & glue in place with the hot glue gun. Slide your leaves down the skewer & glue in place at the same time.

TOP TIP: have a bowl of cold water to dip your fingers in before touching the glued area to save them from getting burnt!

Step 2…

Apply little glue around the bottom of the flower – particularly where you can see any stitches – & stick the leaves to the rose & your flower is complete!

Display…

You could gift your flowers as a bouquet, display in a small bottle or vase or simply tie some ribbon around the stems…

If sewing isn’t your thing you can buy ready made versions in my etsy shop here along with my hand crafted leather roses…

DaphneRosa Etsy

Happy Valentine’s everyone!

Kate

x

This was a collaborative post with DYLON who provided the supplies.

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