I’ve been on a huge fabric flower kick recently. I’ve pinned tutorials for about twelve different styles of flower, and I’ve tried about seven of them in the past three weeks! But of the seven I’ve made so far, this style is my absolute favorite. Look how cute those buttons are!
I saw the original idea for these flowers over at Obstinate Pursuit!
My favorite part about these flowers is that they’re deceptively simple to make. Even though they’re made of fabric and sewn together, you don’t actually need to have any sewing skills (besides the ability to not poke your own eye out with a needle) in order to make these! But if you’re looking for other fabric flower tutorials that don’t necessarily require sewing, there is an awesome post with tons of tips for making fabric flowers over at One Project Closer!
Another very cool thing about this project is that there are tons of variations you can make on these flowers! You can use different types or colors of fabric, different buttons, more than one button, different sized circles for different sized petals, different numbers of petals, different fabrics on alternating petals…the possibilities are pretty much endless!
- fabric (I had a bunch leftover from customizing my shoes with Mod Podge, so I made a matching hair clip!)
- a needle
- felt for the backing
- some sort of circle-making device (I traced around the rim of a drinking glass)
- an iron (optional, but it sure makes it easier!)
First, trace five circles onto your fabric. Each circle will become its own petal, so the size of your finished flower depends on how big your circles are at this point. The circles I used for this flower are 3 1/4″ in diameter, and the final flower is about 2 3/4″. I tried a smaller circle as well for a few flowers and it seems to be that your final flower will be about 1/4″ to 3/4″ smaller than the diameter of your original circles. Just try a few sizes and figure out what works best for you.
Once you’ve drawn your circles, cut them out. Don’t worry about being super precise with your cutting; the edges aren’t going to show at all in the finished flower.
Fold each circle in half, then in half again so that you have five quarter-circles. Here’s where the iron comes in handy. Just give your folds a quick press and the “petals” will stay folded up while you work with them.
Take one petal and make three big, long stitches across the curved end of the fabric. You don’t want tight or tiny stitches here.
Then, pull your thread taut and bunch the fabric up, like you’re making ruffles. I like the look of the petals best when I use three long stitches across the top, but you can use two, or four, or however many you’d like. It will just change how “bunched up” and “ruffly” your finished petals are, so feel free to play around with it!
Grab your next petal and do the same thing. One note here, if your petal has a “front” and a “back” (meaning, sides of the quarter circle that you want to see or don’t want to see), make sure that you start your first stitch from the “back” and that your three long stitches are visible on the “front”. The back should have two long stitches. This will make sure that your petal bunches up with the correct side facing up.
Repeat for all five petals (or however many you have). When you finish bunching up the last petal, pull your thread tight through all of the petals so that they form a circle. See how it’s starting to look like a flower!
Keeping your thread tight, make a tiny stitch to attach the end of the last petal to the beginning of the first petal. Again, don’t worry too much about hiding that stitch. Just keep it mostly in line with the stitches you’ve already made, and you’ll be able to hide all that mess with a button!
Note that the hole in the center is relatively small with five petals. The more petals you have the larger your hole will be, and the bigger a button you’ll need to cover it up.
Once your petals are all attached to one another, grab a fun button and sew it right on to the middle of the flower! Make sure your button is big enough to hide the raggedy edges of the fabric, and all of your stitching. 🙂
Quick tip for button sewing: Thread two strands of thread through your needle instead of just one. Then pull the needle halfway down both strands, fold your strands in half, and tie all four ends together in a knot. This way you have four strands of thread in every stitch you make instead of just one or two. You will only have to make two stitches per pair of holes to hold your button on!
The button will hide the hole from the front, but you need a piece of felt on the back to hide the hole from that side. Cut a small circle out of your felt, just big enough to cover the back without sticking out and showing from the front. Glue the circle onto the back of the flower, and once it’s dry you’re done!
I turned some of my flowers into hair clips and some into pins for purses or scarves. It’s super easy to do; just glue a barrette or a pin back or whatever onto the felt backing once it is dry! This specific flower was going on a bobby pin, so I actually stuck the pin over the felt backing before gluing it on. Saved me the trouble of gluing the felt, waiting for it to dry, and then doing it all over again to glue the bobby pin on!
But if you want to put the flowers onto a barrette or a pin, it’s better to glue the felt backing on by itself first. Then, once the felt circle is dry, cut another small piece of felt. Place the small piece over the barrette or pin backing and glue the whole thing (felt and backing) onto the felt circle and flower.
So what do you think? Pretty fun, right?!
Have you ever made fabric flowers? I made fabric flower hair clips out of silk petals and they’re so fun! What other fun things would you do with these flowers?
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