Introduction: Steel Rose Workshop - Valentine's Day

About: Engineer. Designer. Community Cultivator

The Steel Rose Workshop was hosted by students at the University of Minnesota for Valentine's Day 2017. The event required no metalworking experience and attracted many people who might not typically complete DIY projects.

Many thanks to colleagues at the Georgia Tech Invention Studio for sharing their steel rose template and describing how the workshop is run on their campus.

Supplies (per participant):

  • Rose petals: 6"x6" steel sheet, 0.03" thick (22gauge)
    • See template files below for shape of petals and leaves.
    • We cut these out with a water jet cutter. As a low-cost alternative, a few participants traced the shapes with a Sharpie marker and cut them out with snips.
  • Rose stem: 1/4" diameter steel rod, 1' long.
    • We cut these to size with with a band saw.
  • Epoxy, Quick Setting
    • Use an epoxy that sets in 10-15 minutes.
    • Clamps and vices are very helpful when adhering components.
  • Stick and paper plate (for mixing and applying epoxy)
  • 2 Pairs of Pliers
  • Hand File
  • Snips, also known as shears
  • Mallet
  • Steel Wool
  • Safety Glasses
  • First Aid Kit

Time Required:

  • 1-2 hours


Approximately $110 for 60 roses

Step 1: Workshop Preparation

Prepare petals and stem for each participant prior to the workshop. Create at least one rose in advance to use as an example.

Our petals were prepared using a water jet cutter. Three sheets of steel were stacked and cut simultaneously.

Step 2: Clean Metal With Steel Wool

Step 3: Remove Petals From Sheet

Step 4: Cut Tabs Off Petals

Step 5: Smooth Edges With File

Step 6: Fold Petals Into Rose

Participants can shape their roses however they wish.

Step 7: Connect Petals With Epoxy

Step 8: Bend Stem

Bend the stem by hand or with the help of a mallet.

Step 9: Bend and Connect Remaining Pieces

Patience and creative clamping may be required while epoxy is setting.

Valentine's Day Challenge 2017

Runner Up in the
Valentine's Day Challenge 2017