November 4, 2012

Upcycled Vase of Flowers

Filed under: Paper Craft,Upcycling — sarah @ 11:48 am

This vase of flowers was made from an old copy of the magazine New Scientist.

Upcycled Flowers

Items needed for this project:

  1. an old magazine

  2. Pritt Stick type glue

  3. Copy dex or decoupage glue

  4. Scissors

  5. Cleaned and de-labeled tin can (if you are doing the craft project with kids then it is advisable to put a strip of heavy duty tape like gaffa tape along the top of the can and fold it down either side to cover any sharp edges).

  6. On old jumper or scrap cloth

First of all I removed the pages and cut some of them in half across the text so I had ‘fat’ rectangles rather than ‘thin’ ones. I put these to one side and then cut some other pages into quarters.

I took a quarter and smothered one side of it in Pritt Stick and then rolled in up over itself to make a tube. Some people may find this hard to do in which case a wooden skewer or bamboo stick can be used to wrap the paper around. Those who do a lot of paper craft may have a special tool for this but it is. Be careful at what angle you roll the paper at as it produces different styles and strengths of straw. I prefer rolling from one corner at an approximately 45 degree angle.

rolling a magazine page into a construction straw

This creates paper construction straws relatively short for sticking to the side of your tin can. How many straws you will need will depend on the size of your can and on how tightly you rolled the straws, the tighter the better to be honest. When you get to the end of rolling a straw it is important to put just a little bit of glue on the tip before laying it flat on the side of the straw If you do not do this you will have a flap on you straw which will get caught and slowly unravel it.

hamemade constructions straws and tin can

I think covered the tin can in copydex glue and wrapped a a half sheet of magazine around it. this didn’t quiet go all the way around so I suck a second one on making sure that there was some paper sticking up over the rim of the can.

Cover tin can in magazine paper

I then snipped the over hang of paper with a cm gap inbetween each cut so I had lots of tags sticking up. I then glued this down over the rim of the tin can.

snip cm wide flaps in the over hanging paper so you can fold it over can lip

I then had a tin can covered in magazine paper.

tin can covered in magazine paper

I then snipped off on of the pointy ends on all the paper straws I had made. And using the copydex still began to glue them onto the side of the tin can in an upwards direction.

Stick construction straws on tin

I left the straws pointy at one end and different lengths to imitate actual straw that grows and has been used for making corn dollies and things for centuries but you can trim them down and maybe make a rim for the vase if you like.

straw covered tin can

I then made the flowers to go inside the vase, today this I cut more pages into quarters and then folded each sheet into quarters. I then cut a leaf or petal shape out of the rectangle of folded paper being careful not to cut too near one corner which is where the middle of the sheet actually is! This gave me a nice four petalled flower. I used the Pritt Stick to lay two or three lots of petals together with the petals off set slightly (I put the second sheet down so that the petals were inbetween the first sheets petals). I placed the petal sheets over a loop I’d made with my thumb and fore finger and pushed the center of the flower in, I pinched the pushed through bit and twisted it which made the flower bit of the flowers.

For the stems I simply made larger construction straws using the half sheets I’d cut at the beginning. I snipped of the top pointy bit and using a blob of copy dex glued the flowers to the stems and left them to dry for a bit.

magazine flower

I then cut a strip of brown fabric from an old top and tied it around the vase and then placed the flowers in it. I ran this as a workshop at the Green Unconference in Long Ashton which went really well.