Paper flowers have been popping up everywhere now that spring is here.
Black Prism decided to put their own spin on it, which of course involved LEDs. ;)
We created these flowers for a commissioned art installation. Feel free to reach out if you're interested in us creating a mystical garden for your space!
Step 1: Materials, Tools, and Knowledge Needed
- Crepe paper (light colours work best)
- Diamond craft mesh
- LED circle
- Power supply
- Level shifter
- Tacky glue and hot glue
- Soldering equipment
- LED circuitry
We will go through the basic concepts and general idea of how to make these glowing flowers, with an assumption that you have some technical know-how with LEDs already.
Step 2: Create Base Dome
Use craft diamond mesh or chicken wire (craft mesh is a lot easier to handle for a project this scale!) to shape into a dome for your flower's base. I went for a dome with a flatter top, so that the light doesn't have to travel too far out the flower to be seen.
Cover with crepe paper (white works well) and glue.
Step 3: Cut Strips of Crepe Paper
Using crepe paper, cut long strips of varying sizes. These were about 18" long, 1 1/2" tall, and 18" long, 1/2" tall.
Decorate the strips (optional). You can stain white paper with watercolour ink, or bleach coloured paper to get the effect you see in these photos.
Step 4: Cut Out Petal Shape
The petals in the middle of the flower will be the smallest, so we'll use the shortest strip.
Fold your paper in half, and then in half again. Do this until you get to the size of the petal you want. Cut out a petal shape.
Curl them in without creasing completely and gue onto the middle of your base.
Step 5: Repeat With Larger Petals
Cut larger petals (don't fold them this time).
Glue onto your base.
Step 6: Install LEDs
We used these, and removed the outer two rings. Use whatever size will fit inside your base.
Step 7: Cap Base
Use green crepe paper to make the flower's calyx.
Use the craft mesh to cap the base of the flower. Cut your desired shape into the green crepe paper and glue to the mesh. Make sure to leave a bit of a hole for the wire connector.
Step 8: Connect LEDs
Connect the wire coming out of the LEDs to your microcontroller and power source.
Step 9: Your Glowing Paper Flower Is Done!
We hung ours on some vines for an art installation. :)
Step 10: Experiment With Different Kinds of Flowers
Look at actual flowers for inspiration! Play around with different construction methods and varying shapes and sizes of petals.