Introduction: Simple Paper Flowers With Rubber Cement

About: I used to work for, now I just make stuff. // follow me to see what I'm up to:

For this project, we are going to make some fun paper flowers that show off how rubber cement is great for permanent paper bonds.

Rubber cement is the adhesive of choice for artists making archival quality paper collages and sculptures. If you want to know more about this amazing adhesive, check out the Rubber Cement and Contact Cement lesson in my Glue Class.

Step 1: Materials and Tools

Step 2: Assembling the Flowers

To make the outer petals, stack four sheets of paper and trace three 5" circles, then two 4" circles. I found various circular objects lying around my shop and traced three concentric circles from 5-4" wide in diameter, this method scales easily. Cut those circles out and sort them into like piles. You'll end up with 20 circles but will only use 18.

Fold each circle in half, three times. I like using a bone folder because it makes the paper easier to cut later on.

Cut a little heart shape into the wedge-shaped folded paper, trimming down the sides and cutting a rounded v into the top of the arc.

If the paper is hard to trim, open it up to shape the petals with fewer layers of paper to cut through. Repeat until you have 18 concentric petals shapes.

Bend each petal by pinching it between your fingers. This gives the petals a more realistic look. You can also try quilling them around a pencil or a paintbrush

Begin gluing together the flowers by applying a small amount of cement to the centers. When the glue appears dry on both surfaces they are ready to be permanently mated. It shouldn't feel tacky to the touch, but when it comes into contact with another surface coated in cement it forms a bond.

Puncture a small hole through the center of the flower, and run a length of wire through it, bending a loop through one end of the wire. (This is one of two holes made in the entire class!)

Prepare 12 more circles with smaller concentric diameters than the previous petals, and cut them the same way we cut the larger petals. Roughing them up a bit in your hands makes them look more voluminous

Coat the wire loop and the larger flower's center with glue, as well as one of the smaller centers cut in the previous step. Laminate the wire loop in between the two layers of paper. Add one more layer to the flower.

Glue the styrofoam ball to the bottom of the bowl using a hot glue gun. Snip the wire lead coming out the back of the flower to just a few inches. With a shortened wire it is easy to jam the wire into the foam ball and position them as desired.

Paper flowers are a super fun way to use rubber cement, can't wait til you share what you've made with this adhesive.

Remember, surfaces coated with rubber cement or contact cement need to dry completely before being mated. The connection could be weakened if any residual solvent is trapped between the bonding surfaces.

For more great glue tips and inspiring projects, check out the Glue Class :D

Can't wait to see your version of this simple blossom.