This project works well as a gift for valentines, mother's day, or for a special loved one. It takes some patience, but yields a beautiful result. you can also watch a video of the rose being made along with the steps outlined here. Enjoy!
Step 1: Create the Form
The first step in the process is to create a form to begin building the rose. You can create the form several different ways, but it is being shaped on the bandsaw from a 2x2 piece of lumber.
Step 2: Finishing the Form
The last step in creating the form is to drill a large hole in the center of the form that will be used to start constructing the center of the rose. The rose is made from the inside out. The easiest thing to do if you have access is to use a forstner bit to create the void in the middle. This could also be done by drilling several holes or chiseling the center out.
Step 3: Preparing the Veneer
You can find thin cut veneer at most woodworking specialty stores, or online. For this build i am using the contrasting woods of Purple Heart and Ash.
Step 4: Boil the Wood
Cut the wood to a size that will fit into the pot that you are going to boil or steam the wood. I like to put it in boiling water, simply because it allowed me a longer working time to bend and flex the wood. Once the wood begins to curl in the pot, you can remove it and begin working it into the form.
Step 5: Cut Into Shape
The easiest way to cut the veneer at this point is to use a good pair of scissors. Cut the veneer into the general shape of a rose petal, estimate the size before hand based on how big or small you want the rose.
Step 6: Begin Building the Rose
Now that the pieces are cut, choose the petals that you would like to be at the center of the rose and begin placing them into the form. Start by having the petals follow the contour of the outside of the circle and then build towards the center with each new petal. When this step is done, you should have a fairly compact center that starts resembling the inside of a rose.
**Note Apply a small amount of CA Glue (Super Glue) to the base of each petal to hold the petals together. Use only a small amount in order to not glue it to the bottom of the base.
Step 7: Building the Rest of the Rose
Once the glue is dry on the center of the rose, remove it from the form and begin adding petals around the center building up the mass of the rose. It might take some trial and error initially to get the right spanning out of the petals,but this is the part that takes some patience.
**One tip is to glue and secure one side of the petal before bending and fanning it out before securing the other side.
**One recommendation is to use the CA activator to speed up the process of curing the glue
Step 8: Creating the Stem
Use a quarter inch dowel to create the stem. Cut the stem at odd angles and rotate to emulate the random directions of a rose stem. Once the desired shape is achieved, glue and cure with activator. Sand down the angles for a smoother transition and stain at this point if desired.
Step 9: Preparing the Display Base
The base can be cut from any piece of wood and finished in any way desired. The base I used was cut and planed down from a palette and given a classic routed edge and finished with spray lacquer.
Step 10: Securing the Stem to the Rose
The best way that I found to accomplish this was to cut off the base of the form and drill a hole in the center to glue onto the stem and then glue into the base of the rose. If the piece is to large to fit into the base of the rose, then carefully sand it down to the desired size.
Step 11: Creating the Leaves
The creation of the leaves is a little tedious, but well worth it for the final product. Begin by creating a shaving from the same wood dowel that was used for the stem and Cutting two leaf shaped patterns from any remaining veneer that you have.
Then glue to the shaving in the desired location. The shaving will be fairly small, so using tweezers might be helpful to avoid getting too much CA glue on your fingers. Once the shaving is secured, attach the leaves using the same method. Once again, using the CA glue activator will make this step more manageable.
Step 12: Finishing Touches
This step is purely optional and for aesthetics. Wrap the stem of the rose in a brass wire starting from the base of the rose down the stem into a spiral pattern that sits on the display base.
Secure the rose into the base by drilling a hole equal to the thickness of the stem and add some CA glue to keep the rose upright.
**Note take a look at the finish product at all angles for permanently gluing
Step 13: Finished
It is not required, but you can use whatever finish you desire on the end product. This version has a spray lacquer finish that has a mildly glossy sheen.
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