Having fresh flowers around the house is the ultimate luxury, but when a supermarket bouquet inevitably starts to wilt within 24 hours, it makes me reconsider the beauty of artificial blooms. When I spotted these whimsically oversized nashi blossoms (above) in paper flower artist Livia Cetti's new book The Exquisite Book of Paper Flower Transformations, I knew I'd found the perfect stand-in for my usual bodega bundle. Colorful and larger-than-life—these everlasting blooms deserve a permanent spot in your home.
How to Make Oversized Paper Nashi Blossoms
Livia was commissioned to craft these giant nashi blossoms for a window display for the perfume company Jo Malone (here's the limited-edition scent)—but we're thinking a couple of these large-scale flowers would make a playful replacement for the bouquet you typically bring when visiting a friend. Livia reveals the secret to crafting 25 different types of blooms in her new book, and we're sharing the steps for the nashi blossom, below.
What You'll Need
White tissue paper, dip-dyed pink, peach or lime green (for blossoms)
Yellow tissue paper, dip-dyed green (for center)
14 white and 7 yellow 18" pieces of 16-gauge wire, pre-taped
Polymer clay (such as FIMO)
- 1-inch-wide floral tape
- hot glue gun and sticks
1. Prep your supplies. Print and cut out the nashi petal template (copy and print out the image at the end of the post, adjusting the size as needed). Cut fourteen 15" x 20" pieces of the white dip-dyed tissue paper for the blossom. Place the template on the stack of tissue pieces and cut it out to make 14 petals. Then, cut three 7" x 20" lime green tissue paper strips.
2. Create double petals. Place one petal on a flat surface and glue two of the white 18" wires one-half inch above the bottom edge of the petal. Glue another petal on top of the first, edges aligned, so that the two petals sandwich the wire (as shown above). Repeat to create seven double-petals.
3. Make the center. To make the stamen, mold a marble-sized piece of clay into the shape of an olive. Use one of the yellow wires to poke a hole halfway through the long side of the clay (this is where the wire will be inserted once the clay is baked), and then remove the wire. Repeat to create six more stamens. Bake solid, following the instructions on the package. Remove and let cool. Fill the hole with a bit of hot glue and insert the wire.
Using scissors, make a 3 1⁄2-inch fringe along one side of the three lime green tissue paper strips. Then, gather the stamens in your hand so that they are even with each other. Using floral tape, secure them 7 inches below the clay base. Next, arrange the stamens in a radiating spray. Gather up the unfringed edge of the green tissue paper strip, creating a fanlike shape (shown above). Press the pinched end to the wire, covering a third of the space at the base of the stamens. Secure to the wire with floral tape. Repeat with the remaining strips.
4. Build the Blooms. Pinch the end of one petal, creating a fan shape, and attach it to the flower center so that it covers half of the space around the center. Secure the petal to the wire by wrapping with floral tape. Place the second petal on the other side of the center, overlapping the first petal by one-half inch. Wrap the base with floral tape. Repeat with the remaining petals, staggering them below the first two petals and filling in any gaps. Using wire cutters, trim the stem to your desired length and wrap the cut end with floral tape.
Hang them on the wall, display them in a vase or share the flower power by bringing a giant bouquet to your mom on Mother's Day.