I have recently discovered these beautiful folded flowers, and I absolutely cannot stop making them. Tsumami Kanzashi are traditional Japanese folded flowers, made from small squares of silk, that are typically worn by women as hair ornaments in traditional hairstyles.
They seem really complicated and intricate, and they can certainly be that if you really want; but it completely doesn't need to be! I love to make them out of cotton prints that are fun and bright, in addition to scraps of silk and other light fabrics.
These can be used in countless applications. In this tutorial, I'm making one attached to a hair clip, but you could add them onto headbands, combs, brooches, necklaces... the list could go on.
There are a few tutorials out there on the internet, but to find a good variety in petal shapes can certainly be difficult, you just have to keep looking, and just grab a square of fabric and just test stuff out. I am by no means an expert, I can guarantee that, but I have spent more than a few hours testing out different shapes and ways to fold, and this instructable is for a more pointed petal shape.
Step 1: Supplies
- Fabric (in this case, an ivory silk dupioni)
- Scissors/Rotary cutter
- Needle & Thread
- Fray Check
- E-6000 adhesive (you could, I suppose, use hot glue, but it's a pain to use, I think, and it doesn't dry clear. And it isn't nearly as sturdy)
- Button (I used a covered button, but funky vintage buttons are great, too)
- Alligator Hair Clip
- Beads and other pretties to decorate with (if you so choose)
Step 2: Cut Your Squares
To cut the squares, use a straight edge and measure and mark carefully. These must be square with right angles, or this won't work.
Step 3: And Then We Begin the Folding.
Start with your iron - make sure that your square is nice and pressed. If your fabric is a bit wimpy, this would be a good time to starch it if you feel it needs it. I also like to iron this first crease in, just because I like how it looks. But that's just me.
The first fold is simply to fold your square in half, forming a triangle. Press this flat.
Step 4: Fold 2!
Step 5: Fold 3!
Step 6: Fold 4!
Step 7: And... Repeat. a Bunch of Times.
Pin your petal to keep your folds in place. Make sure you get through all of the layers of fabric so that it doesn't loose it's shape.
Fold up all of your squares the same way, trying your best to keep your shapes crisp and consistent.
Step 8: Trim Your Petals
Step 9: Sew Them Together
With a needle and thread, sew them all together. Leave a long tail on either side with your thread, and make sure that all of your petals are facing the same direction. When you get them all strung together, tie the ends together with a surgeon's knot, and pull it tight. Keep pulling it tight until it forms a circular flower shape. Once you get it pulled in enough, double knot it and trim your thread.
Step 10: Get It Ready to Glue
Straighten out your petals and make it look pretty. Lay it on your work table face down.
Step 11: Cover the Mess in the Back
To cover up the back, I just cut a small circle of the fabric I used and glue it to the back.
So cut a circle that's big enough to cover the cut edges on the back of your flower, and fray check the edges. Once it's dried a bit (a couple of minutes will do) go about gluing it to the back of your flower.
I use E-6000, which I use for just about everything. It's strong and dries totally clear. You could use anything, really. Go heavy on the glue, but not so much that it seeps out the sides.
Step 12: Glue the Top
Step 13: Glue the Clip
Flip your flower back over and glue on a hair clip. Or whatever else you want to attach it to. Simple as that.
Step 14: All Done!
That's it. Not hard at all. It just looks like it.