I’ve made paper roses ever since I was a young child. I didn’t always have glue or tape on hand nor floral wire and green tape for that matter. I came up with my own secret way of making long stemmed paper roses without a drop of glue. Now I’m sharing it with you!
1 sheet of paper around 14 – 24″ long and at least 2″ wide I like to use paper shopping bags, because they’re the perfect thickness for a sturdy stem and hardy flower. Use brown paper bags for a more rustic look. If you’ve saved all that red and green wrapping paper from your Christmas presents it would be perfect! Just double up it if the paper is thinner. 1 pair of scissors
Cut the strips
If you’re using a paper bag disassemble it, remove any handles, and flatten it out. I saved a red Crate and Barrel shopping bag from Christmas! The holiday hue works great for red roses. Cut 1″ wide strips. They don’t have to perfectly 1″ wide. I just eyed it My strips are around 19.5″ long. If your strips are shorter, your roses will have shorter stems and the flowers will be less full. If your strips are longer, the stems will be longer but flowers will be more bulbous.
Create the stem
Tightly roll one of end of a strip to create a tube. The finished stem will have a skinnier end, where you started. This will be the bottom of the stem. The other end will be thicker. This will be the top of the stem where we’ll attach the flower. Bend the stem at about 2.5-3″ down from the top. This creates a crook to attach the flower.
Wrap the petals
Take another strip and fold one end down to create a point. Insert half of the point into the crook of the stem and then close the crook back down. This will hold the point in place. Holding the stem’s crook securely closed, fold the strip outwards. This forms a triangle with a diagonal right edge. Wrap half of the triangle around the stem with the diagonal right edge of the triangle at the top. Again fold the strip outwards to form a another triangle, starting about half way along the first diagonal right edge. Continue wrapping … … and folding. As you progress, gradually start new folds farther along the diagonal edge to make larger petals.
Secure the rose
Stop when there is 2-2.5″ of the strip left. Roll the remaining strip into a loose tube. Flatten the tube. Holding the flower securely to prevent it from unraveling, turn the flower over. Insert the flattened tube into the nearest flap Holding the flower securely to prevent it from unraveling, turn the flower back over to the top. Pull the flattened tube through to secure the flower. Turn the flower over to the bottom again, and insert the flattened tube into the next flap. If the flattened tube protrudes through to the top side of the rose snip off the extra length.
Make a leaf
Uncurl the top length of the stem … … all the way down to the base of the flower. Flatten the uncurled length to the base … … to further secure the flower and form a leaf. Fold the leaf in half lengthwise Cut a point, and unfold the leaf … … and now you have a paper rose made entirely of paper without the use of tape or glue!
Sira, who hails from South Korea, sent me a photo of a dainty bouquet he made with a purple shopping bag.