Bring year-round color to your tabletop with these fun and easy coffee filter flowers.
Materials for Dyeing Filters
You will need: basket shaped coffee filters / cone shaped coffee filters/ watercolors/ water.
Make the Dye
Remove the water color tabs from the package and place in a non-porous bowl with a tablespoon or two of hot water. Begin crushing the tablet with the back of a spoon.
Getting the color right
Add another cup of water and continue crushing the tablet until it is completely dissolved. For more saturated color add another tablet. For less saturated color, add a bit more water.
Dip the Filters
Place a stack of filters (about 10) into the dye bath and fully submerge.
The filters only take a few seconds (10-20) to absorb all of the color they will take. You can dye them again after they have dried if you want more saturated color. Remove the filters and wring them out to remove excess dye. They are quite resilient, so give them a good squeeze. Reserve the dye for later use.
Dry the Flowers
Air dry the filters, or alternatively you can dry them in a 230˚ oven for about 20 minutes. Cover them loosely with a sheet of aluminum foil and watch them closely. If desired, press them with a hot iron for just 2-3 seconds on each side.
Materials for the flowers
You will need: dyed filters (8 cone shaped for each rose and 5 circle shape for each carnation) / pencil / scissors / hole punch / floral tape / chopstick or bamboo skewer / flat paint brush.
Prepare Rose Cutouts
Use a pencil to draw two small petals on the bottom portion of the cone filter. The first shape should be about 2.5 inches at the top of the arch. Cut this shape out, but reserve the scrap as a template for additional flowers.
Make More Petals
Use the first shape to create the next shape by laying it on a new filter and drawing arches that start and end in the same place but are about 1/4 inch taller than the first shape. Cut this out, saving the scrap as a template and repeat two more times, increasing height by 1/4 inch each time. Draw one shape with three arches 1/4 taller than the last 2 arch shape.
Make the Largest Petals
Draw a half heart shape on either side of the last 3 cone filters. They should be about 1/4 inch taller than your last shape. Cut these out and save one of the scraps as a template for additional flowers.
Line Up the Petals
When finished you should have the petals shown here to begin assembly.
Prepare the Petals
Punch a hole in the bottom center of each of the petal cutouts. The hole should overlap the top of the seam on the bottom of the filter.
Finish the Cutouts
Use scissors to cut away a notch from the sides of the punched hole through the bottom of the seam on the filter.
Prepare the Stem
Wrap floral tape around the top of the plastic straw (about 1.5 inches). Pull the tape tightly to expose the adhesive. Twist at the top and push into the top of the straw with a chopstick or bamboo skewer.
Add the Petals
Feed the straw between the two layers of the petal cutout and through the hole in the bottom. Pull the cutout up to about 1/2 inch from the top of the straw.
Fasten the First Petal
Wrap floral tape around the bottom of the cutout and the straw tightly.
Add Remaining Petals
Continue feeding the petals from smallest to largest and fastening with floral tape. Overlap the tallest part of the new petals with the lowest part of the last attached petals.
Create the Stem
When you have fastened the last petal cutout, continue wrapping the floral tape all the way to the end of the plastic straw. Twist at the end and push it into the bottom of the straw with a chopstick or bamboo skewer.
Open the Flower
Use your finger and thumb to press the petals down and away from the center creating fullness. Use the chopstick to help in tight spots.
Curl the Petals
Use the tip of the chopstick to curl the edges of the petals by rolling the paper over the chopstick and pulling the chopstick out. Work from the outermost petal inward.
Add Color Depth
Add a bit of depth to the color by lightly brushing on some of the reserved dye to the edges. You may have to roll the edges again if they get too wet.
Make the Carnation
Begin by cutting 5 of the dyed basket filters in a spiral about 2 inches wide.
Apply the First Spiral
Add floral tape to the top of the plastic straw as you did for the rose. Then attach the first of the spirals by wrapping and attaching with floral tape simultaneously. Pinch and gather paper in small pleats as you go.
Add More Spirals
Continue adding more spirals making small pleats and fastening with floral tape as your work your way around the stem. You may find it easier to tear off 4-6 inch strips of floral tape for each spiral.
Wrap the Stem
When you have attached the last spiral continue wrapping the stem all the way to the bottom of the plastic straw. Twist the end and poke it into the bottom of the straw using a chopstick or bamboo skewer.
Shape the Flower
Use your fingers to fold back and finesse the flower petals.
The flower may be quite compact toward the center and difficult to manage with your fingers. Use the tip of the chopstick to create space between the layers.
Gather the petals loosely in your hand and use scissors to shape by trimming away excess and creating a smooth top.
Coffee Filter Flowers
A bouquet of these coffee filter flowers will add a bit of cheery color to your decor.