My Creative Workbook

Christine de Beer - effortless floral craftsman

Sink a carnation composite flower flat top platform into a vase

Cut a small circle out of cardboard

Cut a small circle out of cardboard.

Pull the petals from a carnation stem

Pull the petals from a carnation stem.

Design note: I pull the petals (taking care not to rip or bruise them) because I just love the inside pistil, so I set that aside to design with.

Have a look at the petal

Decide on the effect you want to achieve. Have a look at the petal- would you like your petal to curve this way or that? Or this way and then that way? Or Book readers turn to page 202 for a different take. The petal placement makes a big difference!

Start to glue the petals to the cardboard

Start to glue the petals to the cardboard.

Glue petal by petal moving around the edge

Glue petal by petal moving around the edge...

Creating a neat collar with the largest petals in your heap

Creating a neat collar with the largest petals in your heap.

Glue in the next row just inside the first.

Glue in the next row just inside the first.

Continue to fill in the circle with carnation petals row after row

Continue to fill in the circle with carnation petals row after row...

Until almost the entire surface is covered with petals

Until almost the entire surface is covered with petals.

About the size of a carnation flower head

Design note: Now... here we usually fill the flower until we have a space (about the size of a carnation flower head) in the middle of the composite flower. Punch a hole through the cardboard and slip the flower into the space to finish the design.

But I wanted to create something special with those pretty pistils

But I wanted to create something special with those pretty pistils... so...

Continue adding carnation petals

Continue adding carnation petals so that they overlap in the inside of the flower.

Carefully lift up a petal and glue in a pistil

Carefully lift up a petal and glue in a pistil.

Creating an interesting heart for the fantasy flower

Creating an interesting heart for the fantasy flower. Settle the petals back over the pistil so that is looks like it just grew that way.

Now for the interesting part: I wanted my composite to be low... but not inside a glass container. To look almost like a floating moss ball on a dew drop for the blossom twigs to fall on. To achieve this I created a support with sellotape. I discuss the reasoning and how to make it stronger if need be in this week's notification email (with a tip on how this can be a design solution in a pinch) so that you can ask questions or comment directly to me. Make sure you are signed up to receive the email. The button is below this post.

Place a tape strip just inside the edge of the container

Place a sellotape strip (sticky side up) just inside the edge of the container.

Turning the circular opening into a square support

Turning the circular opening into a square support with four bits of tape.

Settle the composite platform so that it sticks to the tape just inside the rim of the container

The idea is that the petals should not be high above the container but instead be just inside.
Settle the composite platform so that it sticks to the tape just inside the rim of the container- allow the flower to sink in slightly without ripping the tape from the glass.

Design note: if you want to add a heavier composite you have to create additional support. See this week's email for tips.

Add a few green blossoming branches to the flower design

Add a few green blossoming branches to the flower design

Design note: I wanted the blossoms to not yet show colour to represent early Spring... pruning season so I kept them out of water.
happy to report that the leftover blossom twigs that were in water is starting to pop open. Spring is not far away now.

And finish the design with a few dew drop crystals

And finish the design with a few dew drop crystals. See the Tutorial in the links below for detailed instructions on how and why I add the crystals using a pin.

Every week I add a new design with related tutorials. Be sure to subscribe to receive an email notification with design inspiration.

Tutorials

6 September 2011 Autumn leaf Composite Flower

Glue a round Autumn leaf Composite Flower.

15 February 2012 Gladiolus Composite

This looks spectacular but it is the easiest composite flower to make

6 September 2011 Autumn leaf Roses

I used to make baskets full of these when I was a little girl. We had a big Acasia thorn tree and I used to spear my “roses” onto the tree pretending I was the fairy responsible...

11 November 2012 Autumn Leaf Rosette

Great way to use all the autumn leaves you collect on walks during the season. Slowly build up the leaf rosette and let the leaves dry before adding a few more.

8 July 2015 Using a pin to place tiny dew drop crystals

It's sometimes difficult to place a tiny crystal or bead exactly where you want it.

30 August 2011 Removing Oasis Floral Adhesive glue spills

The finish of every design should be flawless. Make sure there are no bits of glue visible in your design by carefully removing all traces of spills.

10 July 2013 Where to cut Carnations or Pinks to condition

Cutting carnations to condition

20 November 2012 Green Trick Floral Wings

Glue gypsophila sticks, green trick carnations, Star of Bethlehem, passion fruit tendrils, jasmine foliage and string of pearls succulents to create floral wings

Favourite Flowers

Dianthus

Pink, Carnation, Clove Pink, Chinese Pink

Related Designs

24 February 2021 Picked up some proper Pruning

An early Spring design with a twist on using an old favourite: composite flowers.

5 January 2011 Protea Composite

To create this huge Protea I took apart nine Protea flower heads and glued the tepals and bracts back on to a polystyrene ball to create a large Protea composite flower that is...

6 September 2011 When Autumn Fall

Autumn leaf composite flower

11 November 2012 Leaves by Hundreds came

A rosette of fall leaves to celebrate the beauty of autumn

7 August 2019 Point Out: this is a single bunch of gladiolus!

Cut stems of Gladiolus to place in a radiating summer design.

10 July 2013 Pink

Weave an invisible grid to float the plant material on

20 November 2012 there’s a feeling

Glue snippets of dried green stems and Green Trick Carnation to make tiny floral wings for Christmas

2 April 2014 Apricity

Turning a stand-by floral technique sticky side out

7 June 2017 Dream, Job

Create a grid to rest some plant material so that it floats and some with their stems to rest in the water below