Wednesday, November 12, 2014

How Did She Make That Sunflower?

I am totally in love with the sunflower I created for this canvas.  I will walk through the steps with instructions and pictures so you can create your own sunflower. 

To create the sunflower, I used my Silhouette Cameo to make my patterns.  I then traced the patterns onto lunch bags.  I cut them out by hand.  I was not overly particular if I cut exactly on the lines because Mother Nature is not perfect when she is creating flower petals.

I wanted to add layers of color to the flower.  I mixed acrylic and water and did a wash.  I let it dry and then added another color mixed with just a little less water. 

I then stamped a background stamp on all the leaves with some distress ink.  This adds more depth of color and texture.

Now comes the fun part.  It is time to release all your frustrations from the day.  You need to take each petal and scrunch and crumple it up.  I usually let them sit crumpled up for a few hours so that the texture is embedded in the petals.  The picture shows petals crumpled and then how they look uncrumpled. (I think I invented a new mixed media word.)

The layers of the flower were put together with glue dots.  I had some dimensional glue dots and I used several in the center for each layer.  The glue dots added a little space between each layer and made the flower look more dimensional.

I needed to have a center for my flower and also leaves and stems.  For the center of the flower I cut a circle of brown felt and then a circle of a brown plaid.  I used some lightweight yarn and made French dots on top of the circles.  The French dots resembled the seeds that appear in the middle of the sunflower. 

For the stems, I decided to go with fabric again to add more dimension and texture to the canvas.  I tore strips of the green fabric.  For the stem, I just loosely rolled it and used a needle and thread to loosely tack it in a rounded dimensional shape.  The leaves were done the same way but just used a smaller strip of fabric.  I tacked the leaf together at the bottom and molded it into the shape of a leaf.  The stem and leaves were applied to the canvas with double sticky tape.  The center of the sunflower was added with the dimensional glue dots.

As I put the flower together, I decided it needed something extra.  I was looking through my “stuff” and I looked at a wreath I had taken off the wall.  It was a grapevine wreath and it had those little twiggies sticking out.  I clipped some off and added them in the layers of the sunflower.  I just stuck them into the dimensional glue dots.  These twiggies (another new mixed media word) added more color and interest to the flower.  Here is the close up of the flower so you can see all the layers. 

I think you could use these basic ideas to make any flower.  I don't think you would need a Silhouette to cut your pattern - you could draw it free hand.  I think a poinsettia is next on my list of flowers to create.  


  1. Beautiful! Great tutorial!! I will have to give this a try. Especially the scrunching part!! :)

  2. Love the how-to! I love paper flowers, thanks for a fun post!~kim

  3. Awesome! I think you nailed the perfect words for this tutorial and the flower is stunning. I think we all like to scrunch and get messy! Now we can, and I can make an awesome flower! Thanks! ~Niki

  4. Gorgeous canvas! Love how you made that flower plus all of your new fun words. I think it would be fun to make a poinsettia with your method, I have a poinsettia die that would be perfect for it too.