Introduction: Black-Eyed Susan

Give flowers that will last a lifetime! These easy-to-make constructions are excellent for the low-budget gift giver or bored crafter. They require only easy-to-obtain materials and take about 45 minutes to an hour to assemble. In this Instructable you will learn everything from a surprising use for ketchup to how the paper-snowflake skills you honed as a child can turn a piece of paper into a work of art.

It should be (ahem) noted that the final product bears little to no resemblance to rudbeckia herta (black-eyed susans).

Ready to get started?

Step 1: Materials and Tools

Time for the inevitably boring materials and tools page! You will need the following for one flower:


  • orange, black, red/different orange, and green paper
  • a small nail
  • roughly a foot of copper wire
  • a green pencil
  • possibly ketchup


  • black Sharpie
  • needle-nosed plyers
  • sissors

Step 2: Making the Petals

Time to make the petals. This is the most tedious part of the project. Start by cutting out a square of orange paper the size of a sticky note. Fold it into quarters and leave it folded. Cut the unfolded edges into a quarter circle shape. If you unfold it now, you should have a rough circle. Next, cut a zig-zag pattern as shown in the photo on the edge of the curve. After you do that, make cuts as shown by the diagram (a picture is worth a thousand words). Unfold it, and pull out the extra pieces if there are any. Some trimming may be needed, but it doesn't need to be perfect. We are aiming for quantity, not quality.

To make a flower, you will need to make 3 or 4 of these orange petal-snowflakes. After you do that, make a slightly smaller snowflake with the red/different orange paper. The final snowflakes you need to make are the black ones. I made two that were slightly smaller than the red snowflake.

After you finish this, stack the orange, red, and black snowflakes on top of each other, respectively.

A paper cutting device, such as a Cricut, would be very useful for this step.

Step 3: Making the Leaves and Middle

To cover up the sloppy middle of the petal snowflakes, and give Susan her black eye, cut out a black circle to put in the center of your stack of petal snowflakes. If you need to, use a quarter as a reference.

To make the leaves, take your green sheet of paper and make 2 snowflakes without the squares on the ends. I made my much smaller than the petal snowflakes.

Step 4: Assemble the Flower

Now comes the step you've been waiting for. Color you nail black with your sharpie. Carefully push the middle and petals onto the nail. After that, bend the black petals upward to give the flower more character.

Step 5: Stem

I attached my flower to a green pencil with a copper spring. You could also push your flower into a tack board, make it into a magnet, or use it as a hair decoration.

If you want to do the same thing as me, it's time to get out your copper wire, ketchup, pliers, and pencil. Start by wrapping the copper wire around the pencil. I found the best way to do this is to hold on to the spring with the pliers and do the wrapping with your other hand. After that, compress the spring to make it more uniform. Take it off the pencil and stretch it out by pulling on each end. Tighten one end so that the nail fits snugly inside it. If necessary, use glue to secure it. If your copper wire needs cleaned, give it a light ketchup coating and let it sit for a few minutes. Clean it off and you will have a sparkling copper wire.

Step 6: TA-DA! Your Finished

Congratulations! You now have a beautiful paper flower. I hope you enjoyed this Instructable! If you make one, be sure to post a picture. Try out some other colors.

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