Introduction: Pop-up Bouquet Homemade Greeting Card
A greeting card can be sent to an individual for any particular occasion— ranging from birthdays, to weddings, to just because. Greeting cards are important to send well-wishes to loved ones, especially when in-person contact is not possible.
Sending a greeting card (especially a homemade one) gives loved ones the ability to have something from people they care about. It is a physical object that they can look at many times for as long as they decide to keep the card.
With these instructions, you can make your own homemade greeting cards. The materials required for this project can be found in most homes, such as scissors, paper, and markers. We will be making paper flowers, designing our cards, coloring unique designs, and writing messages to loved ones.
Skill Level: Beginner / Intermediate, individuals 10 years of age and older
Time required: 1 hour, 15 minutes
Warning: Using scissors requires steady hands and careful concentration. Not carefully following the directions could lead to minor/ major injury to hands and/or extremities. This project is recommended for ages 10 and older because it requires small, precise cuts.
- Felt tip pens or markers, two or more colors (washable markers work great and don’t bleed through)
- Scissors (any variety)
- Clear drying glue (I recommend Elmer’s glue sticks for a quick dry glue)
- Heavy book
- 8 pieces of 3”x3” origami paper (can be white or colored)
- 1 8.5”x11” sheet of colored cardstock (construction paper works as well)
- Optional: 2 sheets of white copy paper
- Optional: 12” ruler
Step 1: Gather All Materials.
Note: If you do not have origami paper, you can cut copy paper into 3”x3” squares. This requires 2 pieces of copy paper and a ruler.
Step 2: Fold the Origami Paper.
a. Make the first fold diagonally, so that you are left with a triangle as in Figure 2.2.
b. Now, fold the triangle in half, tip to tip, once again. See Figure 2.3.
c. Make one last fold by folding the triangle in half. Be sure to press the creases firmly so that the triangles hold their shape. See Figure 2.4 for the final result.
d. Repeat this step until all 8 pieces of origami paper have been folded.
You should have 8 triangles after completing this step.
Step 3: Use the Scissors to Cut the Folded Paper Into an Ice Cream Cone Shape.
Cut all 8 folded origami papers into an ice cream cone shape. Be sure to hold the triangle so that the fold is on the left-hand side before cutting (so it would open like a book).
Note: To make it easier, you may use a pencil to outline the shape you want to cut before using your scissors. See Figure 3.2.
CAUTION! Using scissors incorrectly can cause minor/ major injury. Take your time and watch the scissors as you cut.
Step 4: Color Your Newly Created Flowers.
a. Unfold all of the origami flowers.
b. Color each flower using the markers/pens. Be sure to leave 2 petals on each flower, side by side, blank, as shown in Figure 4.1. The flowers may all have the same design, or all different designs.
Note: 1 flower, of the total 8, should be completely decorated. This is for the front of the card. Set this one aside until step 13. Shown in Figure 4.2.
After this step you should have 1 completely decorated flower and 7 partially decorated flowers (2 petals left blank on each).
Step 5: Cut 1 of the Blank Petals Off, Creating a Complete Gap From Petal Tip to Center.
To cut off 1 of the blank petals, cut along the crease of 1 entire petal. This will create a gap in the flower.
Note: Complete this step with only 7 of the 8 flowers.
Your flower should look like a ⅞ pie chart. See Figure 5.1.
Step 6: Glue the Flower Into a Cup-shape.
In this step, you will be gluing the flower so that the gap created in step 5 will be closed.
a. Add glue to the entire remaining blank petal on the flower.
b. Align the blank petal with the back of the colored petal on the other side of the gap.
c. Press the petals together for 5 seconds.
d. Repeat with the other flowers to create a total of 7 cup-shape flowers.
Note: This will create a “cup” shaped flower. See Figure 6.2 for an example.
Step 7: Begin to Assemble the “bouquet.”
a. Lay all the flowers flat and folded in half. Make sure the petal tips face to the right as show in Figure 7.1.
b. Place one in front of you. This will be the first flower of the “bouquet.”
c. On your first bouquet flower, add a dot of glue to the top part (the half-circle) of the top-most petal.
d. On the same flower, add a dot of glue to the top part (the half-circle) of the bottom-most petal.
After this step, the first flower of the bouquet should have two spots with glue on them, as shown in Figure 7.2. The center petal of the first flower should not have any glue on it.
Step 8: Add the 2nd and 3rd Flowers to the Bouquet.
a. Grab another flower from your pile. This flower will be glued to the top dot of glue. Align the bottom petal of the new flower with the top petal of the bouquet (the petal with glue already applied). Press the flower to the bouquet for 5 seconds, or until mostly dry.
b. On the bottom dot of glue, add another flower. Align the top flower of the new flower with the bottom petal of the bouquet. Press the flower to the bouquet for 5 seconds, or until mostly dry.
After this step, the bouquet should have 7 petals lying flat. It should look similar to Figure 8.2.
Note: From this point forward, the petals will be referred to by numbers 1-7 as shown in Figure 8.3.
Step 9: Add the 4th Flower to the Bouquet.
a. Add dots of glue to petals 3, 4 and 5 of the bouquet (shown in Figure 9.1). Again, be careful to only glue the top (the half-circle) of each petal.
b. Align one flower to the petals 3, 4, and 5, keeping the seams on the same side.
c. Press the flower to the bouquet for 5 seconds. If the flower does not stay glued, press for an additional 10 seconds.
Your bouquet should look similar to Figure 9.3 after completing this step.
Expert tip: To add a pop of color in the center of your pop-up bouquet, make this flower more colorful than all of the other flowers. This can be done by using a distinctly different color than the other flowers, or by adding more color to the petals of this flower before gluing.
Step 10: Add the 5th and 6th Flowers to the Bouquet.
a. On the bouquet, add glue to petals 2, 3, 5, and 6 (shown in Figure 10.1). Only apply glue to the top part (the half-circle) of each petal.
b. Align one flower from the pile with petals 1, 2, and 3.
c. Press the flower to the bouquet for 5 seconds using the palm of your hand. Again, if it does not stay glued, press for an additional 10 seconds.
d. Repeat with another flower on petals 5, 6, and 7.
After completing this step, your bouquet should look like Figure 10.3.
Step 11: Add the 7th Flower to the Bouquet.
a. Add glue to petals 3, 4, and 5 (shown in Figure 11.1). Only apply glue to the top part (the half-circle) of each petal.
b. Align the final flower’s petals to the bouquet in the places you have applied glue.
c. Press the flower to the bouquet for 10 seconds, or until mostly dry.
You have completed gluing the bouquet! It now should look similar to Figure 11.3.
Step 12: Let the Glue on the Bouquet Air Dry.
Place the bouquet underneath a heavy book for 15 minutes to ensure the glue dries completely.
Step 13: Decorate the Front of the Card.
a. While you are waiting for the glue on the bouquet to dry, fold your sheet of cardstock in half (hamburger style, as shown in Figure 13.1) to form a rectangle.
b. Glue the completely colored in flower, which you had set aside earlier, to the front of the card (the side that puts the fold on the left). Hold the glue for 5 seconds using your entire palm. The placement is up to your discretion.
Expert tip: Using scrap paper, cut out leaves and color them green to glue underneath the front flower.
c. Using the markers, you can write your message on the front of the card (the side that puts the fold on the left).
Options include, but are not limited to:
- “Happy Birthday!”
- “Miss you”
- “Thinking of You”
Step 14: Glue the Bouquet to the Inside of the Card.
a. Open the card.
b. Place the bouquet on the right half of the card’s crease as show in Figure 14.1. Align the seam of the bouquet with the crease in the cardstock.
c. On the bottom side of the bouquet, add glue to petal 4, the center-most petal. Only apply glue to the top part (the half-circle) of the petal.
d. Press the bouquet to the right half of the card according to how you previously aligned it. Hold for 5 seconds.
e. On the top side of the bouquet, add glue to petal 4, the center-most petal. Only apply glue to the top part (the half-circle) of the petal.
f. Fold the card shut, pressing down the cardstock to the newly applied glue.
Step 15: Leave the Card Closed and Allow It to Air Dry.
Place the completed card underneath a heavy book for 15 minutes to ensure it dries completely before opening.
Step 16: Write Your Message Inside the Card.
Now that the glue has dried, open the card and reveal your pop-up bouquet! Add your message using a pen on the bottom right side of the interior (fine tip works best).
Step 17: You Now Have a Completed Greeting Card!
When you open your card, the bouquet should unfold, creating a “pop-up” illusion, shown in Figure 17.1.
Now that you have a completed card, feel free to send the card to the individual(s) of your choosing, or keep the card as a decoration piece!
If the bouquet does not open, but the card opens: One half of the bouquet did not glue all of the way. Reapply glue to the side that is no longer attached to the cardstock.
If the card/ bouquet only partially opens: There is too much glue attaching the 2 center petals to the cardstock. You can gently pull up part of the glue, or completely remove the bouquet and glue again. When reapplying the glue be sure to only glue the top half of the petal, not the entire petal.
If the card is still only partially opening: Check other petals to see if the glue spread. There should only be 2 petals attached to the cardstock. Gently lift up any accidentally glued petals.