Crepe Paper Godetia and Bougainvillea

Tiffanie Turner of papelsf and corner blog is back with a spectacular delivery of vibrant (end of summer) color!  Check out Tiffanie’s version of the classic bourganvilla embraced with lovely godetia  to compliment.  Learn how to re-create this beauty today.

Hi there! I'm very happy to be back with another crepe paper tutorial for the truly lovely folks at Carte Fini. Something bright to finish up the summer with, a bouquet of beautiful godetia and bougainvillea. These are two flowers I've started to teach at the beginning of my  workshops , because they are simple enough, and they showcase six gorgeous crepe paper colors that were just made for them. It's hard to tell the real thing apart from these paper beauties!

The colors pictured above that I used for the godetia are #548 (baby pink) and #569 (sweet pea), #601 (salmon), and beautiful ombré colors #600/1 (pink salmon nuance), which is more of a fuschia-to-white-to-fuschia ombré) and #600/4 (blush nuance), a salmony-pink-to-white-to-salmony pink ombré). Color #570 (pink suede) is a perfect color for bougainvillea. I love them all!

As I mentioned, these are fairly simple flowers, a far cry from my previous tutorial for Carte Fini, but they pack quite a punch as a bouquet, boutonniere, in a flower crown or as a filler for your other paper flower projects. Both are constructed in a way to make them less fragile. The bougainvillea are loosely interpreted, while the godetia are a spot-on match for the real thing, if I do say so myself. Let's get started!

Along with the crepe paper colors you would like to use for the petals, you will need some green crepe paper for the leaves (should you choose to add them). I recommend color #562 (green leaf), or for a special occasion, color #801/2 (green gold metallic nuance). You will also need green florist wire and tape, a glue gun and glue sticks, scissors and an upholstery needle.

Below are the petal sizes and shapes, shown on a 1" x 1" grid. Use these as a guide for your petals for each flower.

TO MAKE GODETIA

Start by cutting three 1 1/2" wide strips of paper with the crepe grain running up and down the long way. They should each be a bit longer than two of the sections demarcated by the ridges, as shown below. You will be cutting three petal sets from these, each one slightly longer than the last.

For the innermost petals, which will be the smallest, cut the ridge off of each end of one strip of paper, so that the strip is just the length of two sections and a center ridge. Fold the strip in half at the ridge and cut the petal shape from that. The top of the petal should touch the top of the strip of paper. Unfold for your first petal set and set aside.

 

Next, repeat the above step, but cut the second strip to the outside of each ridge line, so that the ridges are at the top and bottom of your strip. Fold at the center ridge and cut your second petal set from this, again being sure to use the full height of the strip. Set aside.

Repeat again with the remaining strip, cutting it about 1/8" longer than the previous strip. Fold it over and cut out your petal shape. I like to trace the previous petals, pulling them to the top of my strip to accommodate the slightly longer length. 

 

The shortest petal set will be on the inside of the flower, the longest on the outside.

 
Each end of these petals now need to be ruffled. Do this by lightly pinching the center of one end of a petal between the nails on your thumb and forefinger and quickly pulling to the right, then doing the same to the left. This is similar to using the side of a scissor to curl ribbon. It might take a little practice, but you should see a nice ruffled effect. Ruffle all six ends of the petal sets. 
 
 

Similarly, each side of each petal set needs to be stretched into a little cup. To do this, press both thumbs into the center of each side of the petal close to the fold, and stretch gently but firmly to create a cupped form. Repeat on the other side of the fold, and on the other two petal sets as well.

 

They should look like this:

 
Take the shortest petal set and fold in half. Place a 1/4-3/8" bead of glue up the outside of the bottom edge near the fold as shown below and overlap the other side over the glue a bit to seal up one side of this inner petal, creating one side of the "cup". When cool enough to handle (but still hot enough to mold), carefully press your finger into the cup to help shape it, pushing it into the palm of your hand to round that first bottom corner. Repeat on the other side, creating a closed inner petal set. The top should remain frilly and ruffle-y.
 
 
Run a bead of glue along the bottom of the inner petal and place in the center of the second petal set. Align the petals so that the seams of the inner petals will be covered by this second, slightly longer set. While the glue is still malleable, pull the second set of petals up around the first. Secure the sides with a small bead of glue, similarly to when you closed the first petals into a cup.
  

 
You can glue the sides closed tightly or loosely. Every time you get a slightly different looking flower, which is very pretty. After you make a few of them you'll be able to control the outcome better. Be sure to always round the bottom corners and mold the bottom tightly around the end of your finger while inserted into the middle of the petals.
 
 
Repeat the above steps to add the final, outer petal set, secure and close outer edges with glue and round the bottom corners. 
 
 

To insert a floral wire stem, first carefully pierce the bottom in two places with an upholstery needle as shown below, then thread the wire through and twist to secure.

 

You can leave the flower just like this if you'd like. They are beautiful in a vase without any greenery, and they are perfect as-is if you'll be securing them to a crown or headpiece. 

 

If you do want leaves, cut two leaves to match those shown on the grid template photo near the top of the post. Gently cup them, and glue one to either side of the bottom of the flower. Wrap the bottom of the leaves tightly with floral tape (stretching to bring out its adhesive properties) and continue down the stem, smoothing as you go.

 
I enjoy making these so much. They are little effort and high reward. I made over 40 of them for this post, and I loved doing it. Now, on to bougainvillea!

 

TO MAKE BOUGAINVILLEA

Cut two 1" wide by two segment long strips of crepe paper. Cut inside of the ridges so they look like the strips pictured below. 

 

Fold the strips in half. Using the gridded petal guide near the top of the post, cut a petal out of one of the folded strips, creating two connected petals.

You can use that petal as a template for cutting out the second set of petals.
 
 

Apply a wad of glue about 1/4" long up from the center fold. When it is just cool enough to touch, pinch the double petals together tightly and roll between your fingers. 

Snip a scant 1/8" off of that glued end, then place that first petal set in glue on the second petal set as shown below. Orient the first petal set "perpendicular" to the second set. In other words, you want the second set of petals to cover the openings at the sides of the first set.
 
 

Close the second set of petals around the first, pinch tightly and roll between your fingers until totally cool. When glue has completely set up, pull down the three outermost petals, leaving the fourth sticking straight up in the center.

 

Stretch that center petal out wide (without cupping). Carefully cut about 3/8" off of the end of the center petal, then cut and trim it into three tapered pieces, as shown below.


Apply a thin layer of glue to one of the center pieces and carefully fold or roll it onto itself to make one of the inner filaments. If you get a lot of white glue residue, strip away carefully with a fingernail. This part takes a little bit of practice! Repeat for all three. 
 
 
Trim 1/4-3/8" off of the center filaments with a beveled cut. Then stretch and cup each bougainvillea petal as we did for the godetia. This is definitely not an exact replica of the structure of a bougainvillea flower, but the cupping gives it some nice dimension and sturdiness. Real bougainvillea petals are much flatter.
 

 

Attach a wire stem to the bottom by simply setting the wire in a bead of glue. Like with the godetia, you can stop there if you want! These look great in a headpiece or clustered in a vase.

 

 
Bougainvillea leaves grow apart from the blossoms, so if you want greenery with your flowers, this is more of a little accent. For these leaves, stretch a piece of green crepe so it is smooth and then cut from it two leaves to match those shown on the grid template photo near the top of the post. Glue one to either side of the bottom of the flower and wrap the bottom of the leaves tightly with floral tape (stretching to bring out its adhesive properties) and continue down the stem, smoothing as you go. A crease down the center of the smooth leaf looks nice, if you feel like it.
 
 
Groom the leaves and petals back out so the flower is open. That's your bougainvillea!
 
 
I hope you've enjoyed this post as much as I enjoyed making these flowers! Please let us know if you have any questions, and if you'd like to attend one of my crepe paper flower workshops and make these together in person with me, you can find them here. I am excited to announce I'll be teaching in Los Angeles in the new year. Maybe I'll see you there!
 
 
Disclaimer:
This tutorial should not be used for any commercial purpose. We appreciate your understanding.

 

 


Carte Fini
Carte Fini

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7 Comments

Regina
Regina

July 19, 2015

What a wonderful tutorial you did for us. I know coffee filter roses are talked about a lot now. But in 1988 all the females in my family and myself made 600peach coffee filter roses for our daughter’s church wedding. We made the corsages, lapel flowers, table arrangement for the reception and flowers on the cake. We made a bouquet of white roses that trailed down. The only live flowers was ivy that was given by family members I sprayed Avon “Roses Roses” all over the ivy . Until I let it slip in the reception, no one even thought they were coffee filters. Of course the whole line turned and went back in the church to look up close. My one suggestion is that the same hand should dye them all. And hang them on the clothes line to dry.

Tami
Tami

June 27, 2015

I live on Guam, where tropical flowers abound. However, they are fragile and gone too soon when used for decorations. You have created and illustrated an amazing design with these flowers. Thank you so much for sharing—will be using for my next celebration “fiesta”.

Suzanne
Suzanne

June 23, 2015

I’m inspired to try! You have a good eye for color and design. I think a book would be a great idea. Any thoughts about making up ‘kits’ to follow your designs?

Most of all, thank you for sharing.

Patricia
Patricia

May 18, 2015

Your detail to teach this craft is simply amazing,your wonderful I am in awe of your great talent and your willingness to share with others.I can’t wait to get started!!! THANK you so much.

Beverly
Beverly

May 01, 2015

Oh my goodness…beautiful.

Tracey
Tracey

October 06, 2014

If you were the leader of a cult I would join you… (and I am an Episcopalian). WOW I can’t wait to see your etsy store on October 6th… I am counting the days…

Sue
Sue

October 02, 2014

Gorgeous flowers. Love the pretty colors of the crepe paper. Thanks for the step-by-step directions with photos. Very helpful! Keep the flower ideas coming.

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