Introduction: Wanderlust Paper Roses

I've seen so many wonderful tutorials for book roses, this is a tweak of some of those. Mostly it's the way I've ended up making paper roses to use a little less paper and assembly that involves burning myself the least!

This is made from pages from an outdated atlas the library was discarding, but I've also used books and comics that have fallen apart beyond what I can fix and damaged sheet music.

I think it's the being stuck at home that makes using outdated maps most appealing to me right now. I want a bouquet of all the potential places to go someday! There's also something fun about the random mix of colors and places that occurs making these.





-hot glue gun

-a toothpick or paintbrush or anything very small and round will be helpful for curling your petals

-wire for stems is good too, or even a skewer or thin sticks

-if you have it a glue stick can help limit hot glue exposure!

-floral tape is handy but not necessary, green crepe paper could work too or you can skip it entirely

Step 1: Starting With Cutting and Folding

First, cut 3 pieces of paper into 4” squares.

Fold each in half diagonally.

Then that in half again.

Then again!

You should have 3 small folded wedges.

Step 2: Tracing Petals

Make a petal shape template that fits over your folded wedges, leaving part of the bottom edges of the fold intact. I traced my wedge on a scrap of paper then sketched a curved petal with straight sides to line up with the fold.

The petal should have a flat bottom, so you’re nipping off the bottom point of the wedge as well as curving the top.

Trace it out on each wedge and cut them out. Unfold them!

Step 3: Cutting Out Petal Wedges

You should have 3 flower shapes with 8 petals and a hole in the middle.

Cut one petal wedge out from the first piece, a wedge with two petals out from the second, and a wedge with three petals from the third one!

You’ll end up with six sets of petals.

Step 4: Making Petal Clusters

The three larger petal sets you’re going to turn into a kind of cone shape by gluing the petal one on end of the wedge over the petal at the other end of the wedge.

This is where you can see which side you like better and flip them over if you like the design or colors on the opposite side better!

So the 7 petal set becomes a slightly flower shaped 6 petal set, the 6 becomes 5, the 5 becomes 4. You can see they'll stack neatly.

Step 5: Shaping Petals

Now the petals need some shaping.

Start with the larger petal sets. Gently curl the end of each petal over whatever round thing you have handy. The paintbrush I’m using is a little thick, but it’s much easier for me to hold than a toothpick!

Working with the three smaller petal sets is a little fidgetier. We’re going to shape them first and then hot glue them together. Shape the three petals to gently curl downward like the larger sets.

Now to change things up!

With your two petal piece, carefully curl either corner of the petal in at an angle to give it a bit of a bud shape. For the single petal roll it most of the way around your brush or toothpick, then curl the very edge in the opposite direction.

Step 6: Assembling Your Rosebud

To assemble this, well, first, a warning, hot glue is hot! Put something under your workspace and don’t hurt yourself!

Put a drop of glue on the inner curled edge of your single petal and gently push the outwardly curled edge against it. Put it down for the moment.

Next, put a drop of glue on the outer edge of the two petal arrangement and glue them together to make a tight cone. Sometimes it helps if you wrap the petals lengthwise along your toothpick or even around a dull pencil to give them a curved shape before gluing them together.

Do the same for the three petal cluster, put some glue on one edge, and shape into a cone.

Now put these three together. Put some hot glue on the base of the single curled petal and nestle it into the two petal cone, trying to keep the curled part from pressing right against the sides of the petals.

Put some hot glue on the bottom of that and set it into your three petal cluster.

Congrats, you have a bud!

Step 7: Assembling the Rest of Your Rose

To continue, keep adding some hot glue and nestling your flower into the next larger set of petals.

Try to make sure the petals don’t line up exactly, it’s hard with the increase in petal numbers of each row, but even a slight offset will really help.

After you glue the last row of petals onto the rose, squeeze some extra glue along the sides of the opening in the bottom (not in the hole itself!) to make sure everything is well connected.

Once you’re done, leave it upside down to harden for awhile. There’s a lot of glue here and sometimes it stays liquid and hot for longer than you expect.

So start another rose or take a moment to stretch!

Step 8: Adding a Stem

Take a look at your rose. It probably has a small hole at the very center. That’s useful, but if you don’t have one, don’t worry!

If you have a small hole and are using wire, fold the very end to make a small hook. Slide the wire in from the top so the hook gives a little more contact with the center of the flower. Drop some hot glue in the center of the rose to hold the wire in place.

If you’re using a skewer, put in some hot glue then slide it in from the bottom of the flower.

If you don’t have a hole in your rose, you can simply put a lot of glue at the base of the rose and stick your wire or skewer in it and hold it until it sets.

You can be done, or you can add sepals for a finishing touch.

Step 9: (Optional) Adding Sepals

If you want, you to make sepals to cover the glue assembly part on the bottom.

I use floral tape for this. Fold it over a few times to get a 4 layer stack about 1 ½”-2” length and cut out a long teardrop shape. Crepe paper would be fine for this too,

Put a line of glue running out 1” from the base where the stem connects to the rose. Wrap the wider part of the teardrop around the stem and press the narrowing part of the drop out along the bottom of the flower. Repeat for each sepal. Usually 3 or 4 is enough to cover the base and your glue.

Enjoy your rose! Display it or make a bouquet!

Maps Challenge

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