Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Fiesta Flower Wreath

San Antonio has an annual week-long festival called Fiesta! (I'm pretty sure the exclamation point is required) with all sorts of events.  Last year I ran the Mission 10K and this year I'm hoping to make it to the blues festival.  Fiesta wreaths are a popular decoration around town for the month or more leading up to Fiesta.  They tend towards the brightly colored and kitschy, always with streaming ribbons.

My version, inspired by Earth Day last weekend and my inherent cheapness, is made from entirely recycled or previously acquired materials.  I had an idea that it would be fun to make paper flowers and found this simple tutorial from Striving to Be More.  I decided to use ads torn from magazines headed for the recycling bin instead of the scrapbook paper called for in that tutorial.  Martha Stewart Living has great, colorful adds, Runner's World ads are - unsurprisingly - mostly close-ups of people running.  I went for colorful, but maybe sweat works with your decor.

I tried to minimize text on the strips I cut, but you don't really notice once you get to the final flower.  The tutorial is easy to follow, so I won't add much here except to say that if you use magazines, you'll want to cut the strips to twice the width you want (I used 2", 3", and 4") and then fold them in half "hot-dog ways" to increase the paper's strength.  (Did other people grow up with "hot-dog" and "hamburger" folds or are you all totally confused right now?)  You can probably figure out the remaining steps from the photo above.

This is a great project to use up buttons you may have lying around.  Ugly mauve and beige buttons look quite nice against cheerful flowers.  The backing for my wreath is cut from the lid of a pizza box and I laid out the flowers as I made them to make sure the color balance worked.  Then I just hot-glued everything into place.  All told, I made 37 flowers.  At around 7 minutes per flower (I timed myself), this was not the quickest project, but an easy one to spread over multiple nights.  If you aren't up for hours of paper folding, just one would make an adorable bow stand-in on a present.  Feliz Fiesta!


  1. So clever and so colorful!
    Happy "Fiesta!"

  2. I love accordian-pleated rosettes - and this is a fantastic way to use them. Lovely project!

  3. Absolutely lovely. YOu would never guess its made from magazine pages. I may try this sometime soon.

  4. Thanks for sharing your great tutorial! I'll definitely have to try it out with my kids. And as someone who used to work as a geneticist, your blog title totally made me smile. :)


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