January 14, 2011

Felt Rosettes, So Ridiculously Easy

So, as we know, I love fabric flowers. Felted wool, linen, daisies, carnations...whatever. I love them all. And as Evelyn seems to be ferreting them away somewhere, if the absence of flowers in my jewelry drawer is anything to go by, I'm always on the lookout for a new flower to make and wear. Earlier this week I made a little poppy hair clip for Evie for a column and I'll post a link to that tutorial when it comes out, but I wanted to share the how to on these rosettes because it's almost hilarious how easy they are.
The idea for these came out of a quilling article that I read while in line at the fabric store (gripping reading that!) I saw these little teeny paper rosettes and wondered if something similar couldn't be done with fabric, felt, in particular (no hemming for fraying). So home I went to try it. And yowzer, it worked.

You can make these out of those little sheets of felt but it's not the most fabric efficient way, you really only get one flower per sheet and have lots of scraps. But if you are only making one, well, that's the way to go. If you want to make several however, it's better to buy yardage of felt. It's also sometimes cheaper to buy 1/3 a yard of felt than to buy even one sheet if you hit a good sale.

Here's what you'll need:

1/3 yard of felt
bowl or plate, about 6-8 inches in diameter
fabric scissors
hot glue gun and glue sticks

OK, ready?

First, trace the plate or bowl onto the felt to create a few perfect circles and plug in your glue gun

Next, starting at the outside, cut the circle into a spiral strip about 1 inch wide, almost all the way to the center. When you get to the middle, leave about a 1 inch circle attached to the end of the strip.
Beginning with the outside end of the spiral, start rolling the strip tightly, like you are rolling up a cloth measuring tape. Once you've gone about 1 inch, dab a little glue onto the strip and roll on.
Continue to roll, not quite as tightly, dabbing glue on the fabric as you go, down near the inside edge of the strip. Keep the inner edge lined up and slightly tighter than the outer edge. The curve of the spiral will naturally create the rose shape.

Keep on rolling until you reach the end. Use that circle at the end to cover the bottom of the rosette.
So far I've made these roses into package decoration, hair clips, pins and have covered an entire foam wreath with them for Valentines Day. I'm thinking about cutting an oversized one of wool felt next and then running it through the wash before rolling to get a more wobbly, rustic flower. At least I think that's what will happen.

* Edited to add* Here's the tutorial for the poppy!