First, you’ll need a big huge bucket or bag of plaster of paris or pottery plaster. I loved using this because it’s cheap and easy to work with, however, it’s not super heavy if I were to do this again for a client or if the flowers will be outside with wind, I would add rocks in the mix to make it extra heavy. I would also choose larger tins for the base. My flowers were going to be used inside at an entrance to a wedding, leaning against a wall so this was perfect.
Grab a metal container, I used the 79 cent ones from IKEA and a few random ones I found in my storage room. I mixed the plaster in the pot so that I wouldn’t have to worry about pouring it into the small tin containers. Make sure you read the directions for powder and water ratios. It’s pretty easy to figure out how much you will need for each pot. If you mix it all at once in a large container have everything ready so that you can pour it all before it sets. You will need two people if you are doing it that way.
Next, I got the chicken wire out. This is what makes the bendable paper flower stems bend. I like the kind that you can get at IFA it cheaper than Home Depot but they work about the same. IFA does sell chicken wire in different sizes I like the tighter smaller kind. I cut about 8-10 inches off the roll and then put on my gloves to roll it up. You will need to determine how tall you want you bendable paper flower stem, and make sure you get that many yards. Some rolls come in 10 ft. long rolls so that’s plenty for a garden full of giant flowers. I tucked in the cut edges at the top and kind of rolled and squished it together to create a long tube.
tip; I didn’t roll the whole stem because you want to wrap the bottom part around the bucket, so leave the bottom open.
Then grab that masking tape and go to town with wrapping the stem with your tape all the way down. The tape helped in disguising the wire and made a smooth surface for the tissue paper to adhere to. Don’t skip this step it is so important for the final look of the stem to be smooth, without a hint of the wire beneath the tissue paper.
Before you get to the bottom of the stem with your tape, you’ll want to wrap the wire around your bucket. Or in my case shove the tin can of hardening cement into the bottom of the tube of chicken wire. Then just tape tape tape to hold it all tight.
This part is tricky. ( covering it with tissue paper) I did three of the bendable paper flower stems by my self and one with a friend lets just say it’s always easier with two people. but not impossible with one. You will need to spray the stem with spray glue. I’ve used every brand and they all seem to work the same so just whatever is the lest expensive. Then I wrapped the green tissue paper around the taped stem and cut off the excess. If you are doing this with a friend I find that the tissue paper goes on more smoothly. In the end, I couldn’t tell the one we did together. I guess it’s just a saving time thing when you have help and not a visual thing. LOL
This is the best part!!! I love modpodging (is that a word?) I wanted to protect the tissue paper so that it wouldn’t rip off or get holes in it. I also wanted the stems to be a bit shiny so I could have a fun contrast with the mat flowers. So when you are using Mod Podge get the semi-gloss one if you want a bit of shine to your stem. The mat ones I did worked out just fine as well, so just grab whatever you can find.
Pour a big and full of Mod Podge in your hands. Rub carefully over the tissue to seal it. if you lift some paper in areas just rip a small piece to fix the spot right then while the stem is all sticky. (this is better done with a friend who doesn’t have sticky hands) Let dry over night and voilà, your done with your giant bendable paper flower stem!! Your little (big) secret garden is beginning to take shape!! I’ll post the making of the flowers soon. Find the flower tutorial HERE that’s a pretty pink puffy fluffy party in itself!!