About this time last year, the DC metro area was
experiencing record amounts of snow. Without getting into my own opinions as to
why, the clean- up effort took longer than
necessary expected, thus leaving
many people confined to their homes. We were not alone, and in addition to
learning how to brew beer, I had to find other ways of keeping myself
entertained and distracted from the anxiety of waiting for graduate school
admission decisions. This is how I ended up making fabric flowers by the
When my mom saw pictures, she called them “Crazy Daisies”.
At least I think it was my mom. Anyhow, these turned out to be a great
stress-reliever, not to mention a cute little gift for friends, office mates, or
just a different way to express team spirit. Here’s a tutorial on how you can
make these fun little guys in about 20-45 minutes:
- small scissors
- 6 to 8 pieces of 2”x 2” or larger squares of
scrap cotton fabric. The squarer they are, the easier they are to handle. I
would recommend using a rotary cutter and ruler to cut these.
- Matching thread
- Hand sewing needle
- Tacky glue (or hot glue if you’re in a hurry)
- Small wooden discs, heavy ribbon, foam square or
anything else you want to use for backing
- A small button
Tip before you begin: Don’t get frustrated if you struggle
on your first or even second try. The pictures you will see in this tutorial
are actually from two different attempts to make it! Have some patience and you
can have a lot of fun with these.
1) Begin by
pre-threading your needle and placing a secure knot at the bottom of the
thread. Set aside.
2) Place your first square with a corner pointing towards
you. Bring down the top corner to the one closest to you. You should have an
3) Bring in the two sides so that they meet at the bottom
4) Flip the square over and fold the corners in so that they
meet in the middle.
5) Fold in half vertically and flip over, pinching the
bottom. Congrats, you just made your first petal! It should look like this-
6) Very carefully, thread your needle through the sides of
the petal, making sure to catch every layer of fabric. Do not push your petal
down to the knot; leave a little bit of a tail.
7) Repeat steps 2-6 for each petal you want for your flower.
Look very carefully to make sure that the petals will be facing the same
direction before you thread it… I’ve made the mistake before and it’s a PITA to
8) Once you have your petals on the thread, trim the bottoms
so that they are all flat.
9) Take the tail you left at the end and your remaining
thread and tie together so that the petals form a circle (the flower!). This is
the most difficult part; do not tie it too tight or the thread will break, do
not tie it too loose or the petals will go wacky—and not in the way you want
10) Once you have your basic flower shape, mount the back to
prevent fraying. For this one, I used a wooden disk (center), but you could
also use ribbon (if you intend to sew or glue it onto a fabric surface).
Another idea is just to make a simple broach out of it.
11) After the backing has been placed, glue a button to the
center to hide the raw edges and finish it off. In the spirit of today’s
Superbowl XLV, I chose a black button to go with the yellow flower.
Try experimenting with different colors, sizes, buttons and
number of petals!
I saw it, I made it, you can too!