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DIY Wednesday: Paper Rosettes

Here’s my take on the ever popular Paper Rosettes that are circulating out there. If you’re familiar with “Quilling” it’s the art of rolling strips of paper into decorative designs. There’s even a special tool to help you with this project, but again there are always ways of getting around a project if you don’t have all the proper tools. I myself, do not have a quilling tool. I do however have a VERY large box full of toothpicks.

You can follow these step by step instructions to make your own paper rosettes.

What you’ll need to make your own, most of which you’ll have on hand:

  • Pages of a book you’re okay with destroying. Yard sales and the Dollar Store is a great place to pick up less than superior works of literary “genius”.
  • Hot Glue Gun and Tons of Glue sticks. Again, the Dollar Store is a great place to pick up large quantities for little $.
  • The very high tech tool, a toothpick
  • Scissors
  • A Pencil
Step 1: Pull your pages away from the binding of your book. I found that if you start pulling directly away to get yourself started, then start pulling directly upwards you won’t tear your pages. This may vary book by book, but it’s a helpful tip I found. Pulling about 8-10 pages at a time will speed up the process and give your pages strength to resist tearing.
Step 2: Measure the width page and cut your pages length to match so that you end up with square sections of your book pages

cut your pages into a square.

Step 3: Using your pencil (I used a pen so you could see it) trace a circle within your pages and then draw a spiral in towards the center of your page leaving a bit of a tail. Another tip here, if you’re a lefty, start your spiral on the left side of your paper, a righty, on the right side. This will help you better see your line as you cut out your spiral. To get my circle, I used a bucket that I picked up from the dollar spot at Target a while back. It’s helpful to have a collection of various sized circular things for instances such as this where you need a circle in an obscure measurement. Jars, buckets, cd’s, empty ribbon spools are just some you might have on hand.


Step 4: Begin cutting along the spiral line you drew earlier. You can cut several pages at a time and don’t worry if its not perfect, that adds to the rosettes unique shape. If you’re confident in your cutting ability and don’t feel like drawing a spiral, you can skin step 3 and just eyeball the distance of your spiral as you cut. Cut out your spiral

Step 5: Now grab your very technologically advanced crafting tool, your toothpick and begin rolling the outer pointed edge of your spiral. The size of your spiral will differ depending on how many pages you use. On average I used 2 but for a variety, I used 3 and sometimes even 1 page. The little rosettes help fill the gaps in any project you might use it for.
Begin rolling your spiral around your toothpick.

UPDATE: I tried this technique later and found it useful. Many quilling tools have a slot for you to slide you piece of paper into which helps you paper from uncoiling. I used a letter opener, oddly enough, to create a slit in one end of my toothpick for the same effect. You could use any sharp edge you have.

Step 6: Begin rolling your paper around your toothpick and you’ll get a nice tight rosette. You’re outer petals will be looser.

Step 7: Now you may be thinking, all that work for such a small rosette. Never fear, we’ll loosen it up a bit here. Holding the toothpick in your hand (in between your fingers) begin slowly letting the paper unwind to give you a fuller rosette. I folded my tail back a little for easier access to the rest of the pages when it comes time for gluing.

Step 8: When you have your rosette unwound the the right size of your choosing, carefully remove the toothpick and flip your rosette upside down. I like to pinch mine a little so the pages don’t slip and I can hold is securely with one hand while I glue with the other. Fill that void in the middle with a bit of hot glue and spread some hot glue along the exposed edges of you rosette.

Step 9: Fold the tail flaps over that gap in the middle and press to seal. If you used multiple sheets of paper for your rosette, you’ll want to make sure that they’re all secure before letting go. What you’ll end up with looks something like this.

Step 10: Now if you’re like me, that huge gap in the middle is unacceptable. Unless you plan on putting something like a button or a pin in there, you’ll need to take this next step to close up that gap. While your glue is still hot, put that handy toothpick back into the center of your rosette and start swirling it around in the direction of your spiral. Some of that warm glue will catch the toothpick and the loose paper will start to retighten. 

Pull your toothpick out carefully and you’ll end up with something like this. A tighter neater variety of paper rosette.

Remember I mentioned that the size of your rosette will depend largely on how many sheets of paper you use. See below…

What you do with these is up to you. I’m making a bunch for a pinterest inspired wreath. Though I have quite a few, I have many many more to make and many many more hot glue burns to suffer for it.

Now, go Do It Yourself!



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