Framed Fabric Flowers

Charlotte@Living Well on the Cheap  —  August 22, 2011 — 3 Comments

I had so much trouble getting this post up for you all to see. I originally planned to publish it last Wednesday, the morning that I left on a plane to visit my PawPaw in Amarillo, Texas. Fate just wasn’t keen on the idea and for three days straight I kept making mistake after mistake in editing and scheduling it. Finally, I’m back home and able to publish this lovely post about crafting fabric flowers with two lovely ladies over a bottle of wine.

For two years in a row Nick has gone to visit friends in Houston in late summer for some fantasy football nonsense, and for two years in a row I have taken advantage of the free ride to visit my friend Sarah, who moved from Baton Rouge to Houston in Spring 2010. I love getting to catch up with her, visit Ikea, and pretend like I live in a chic, modern apartment in the city. This year my friend Cassie came too! Cassie and I are both married ladies so it was fun to gallivant around town with single girl Sarah and pretend we were cool and chic and routinely stay up past ten o’clock.

During our trip to Ikea last year, Sarah was intrigued by the small Ribba shadow box frame. She wasn’t sure what she would do with it so she just got one and figured she could go back to get more if she came up with a project.

When I returned a year later the frame was still sitting empty and shrink-wrapped all alone, but Sarah had a plan! She’d been intrigued by my fabric flower pillow and had the idea to fill three frames with DIY fabric flowers. Isn’t she so creative? The next day at Ikea we picked up a yard each of a cheerful yellow cotton and some translucent silver fabric for a grand total of only $6. When we got to the frames department, though, the frames like the one she had at home were nowhere to be found. Fortunately, Sarah and Cassie spotted some on a wall display and asked an employee, who said that the small frames had been discontinued. Total bummer until we heard him say that she could buy the display frames “as is.” And guess what the as-is price was? Two dolla each. Holla. We got two frames to add to the one Sarah already had at home and decided to craft flowers in three different styles to fill the frames.

It was dark outside by the time we got tired of lounging by Sarah’s awesome complex pool and eating delicious Tex-Mex, so please forgive the nighttime pics.

Flower #1: Ruffled and Rolled

Sarah cut 3″ strips of the yellow and silver fabric and folded each in half, then layered them together (using pins to secure). She used a needle and thread to make a long running stitch along the rough (not folded) edge, pulling the thread taut periodically to ruffle. When she got to the end of the strip she tied her thread off and rolled the ruffled strip up into a flower shape, using a few stitches and some tacky glue to secure.

Flower #2: Layered Petal Goodness

Cassie cut lots of random petal shapes from both types of fabric, varying the size and shape slightly for interest. She cut out about 15 of each color, then started layering them randomly on top of each other, using first yellow petals and then silver. She hand sewed a few stitches every couple petals or so to secure. After getting all the petals on there, she pinched the center of the flower in half from below and sewed a few stitches, then folded it the other way and sewed a few more, giving the once-flat flower some dimension. It’s too bad I didn’t get more pictures of the process because it really was such a creative concept, and so simple at the same time!

Flower #3: Gathered Flower

I shamelessly copied this technique from Emily at Jones Design Company. She’s a fabric flower genius. I cut 4 5″x3″ and 4 3″x3″ squares from the yellow fabric, then folded each in half and trimmed the sides to create a shape resembling the number 8. Once I had four large and four small petals, I sewed a few stitches across the middle using needle and thread, tugging it tight and tying it off to cinch the center of the petal. With all my petals cinched, I layered them on top of each other (first large, then small), securing each layer with glue. I finished it off with a small bead glued in the center.


We flipped over the paper inserts inside the frames (revealing a perfectly-sized blank page) and glued a flower to the center of each, then left to dry overnight. Here we are the next morning with our creations! This was right before we dashed out for breakfast a la Taco Cabana. One of the many joys of visiting Houston. (from left to right that’s Cassie, me, and Sarah)

Sarah chose to group the frames on a blank wall between her kitchen and entry. Aren’t they adorbs (the flowers AND the girls)?

Here they are close up.

I had soooo much fun on this trip. This is the first time since probably adolescence that I’ve done crafts as a social activity and I realized I’d forgotten how fun it can be! Makes me wanna have a monthly craft night with friends!

Thank y’all so much for your patience with my blog issues last week. It had nothing to do with WordPress or anything else outside of my control–just over-scheduling and poor planning on my part! I feel committed to putting up a quality post every weekday and I promise that I am back on track now. Thank you for coming here to visit my little corner of the interweb. You all have no idea how much you inspire and motivate me every day. You’re the best!

Charlotte@Living Well on the Cheap


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