Saturday, 21 January 2012

Scraps to pretties

Hello!  Magpie Mimi here guesting for Debbie whilst she's otherwise engaged, I suppose a baby is quite a distraction...hehe!  Congratulations Debbie and family on your new little girl!

In the spirit of reduce, reuse, recycle I thought I'd show you this scrap busting tutorial for two different types of fabric flowers as it uses up those long thin pieces you sometimes end up with.  The first is a twisted style flower and the other is a ruffle style flower.  So without further ado, here we go!

First things first, gather together your supplies:
  • strips of fabric, I'd say anything from 40cm upwards, anything smaller and it's going to be tricky and small
  • scissors 
  • needle and thread

Two strips of leftover fabric, scissors and needle and thread

Pick whichever piece of fabric you want to be the twisted flower and attach the cotton to the end of the fabric making sure you stitch it securely as you don't want it coming loose.

End of fabric with thread stitched on

Now, start to twist the fabric and put in slip stitches as you go to secure the twist.

twisted fabric with needle and thread coming through

Keep doing this until you get to the end of the fabric and secure the thread again as you don't want it unravelling.  Don't worry about it being evenly twisted or stitched, it's nicer when it's not so uniform in my opinion, which is why I leave all the edges raw too, but obviously it's personal opinion so go with what finished look you feel happier with.

Fabric all twisted and stitched

Then you need to start rolling the fabric.  Roll it tightly at first to get the centre of the flower and then more loosely after a few rolls to create the look of petals.  Secure each roll of the fabric to the previous layer by stitching it together just one or two stitches per roll will suffice.  You could glue it, but it may take time to dry and it may mark the fabric so I stitch it.

Roll the fabric tightly at first and secure it by stitching it together at the bottom

Mid rolling and stitching process

Then when you get to the end, fold the raw edge in on itself and stitch to the layer next to it to finish it off and voilà a finished flower!

Flower in the palm of my hand

The length of your fabric determines the size so think about how big you want it as it takes up more fabric than you think.  All you have to do then is decide what you're going to use it on, be it a hair clip, hair band, bag or top!  The decision is yours!

Here's the ruffled version:

As before secure the thread to the end of the fabric

Twist and slip stitch as you go along

Here's the difference though, don't secure the thread start pulling on it whilst pushing down the fabric towards the secured end so that the fabric ruffles

Once you've spaced your ruffles to your fancy start rolling and stitching as with the other flower

Ta Da!  Finished ruffle flower in the palm of my hand

Both flowers in the palm of my hand

Hope you have fun making them! 

I'll leave you in the capable hands of Scruffybadger tomorrow.


  1. Oh, what a fun, scrap-busting tutorial! Thank you!

  2. No problem, thought it fitted with Debbie's ethos nicely and we all get to tidy up and save money!

  3. they sound so pretty! I saved a tutorial on Sew We Quilt that talked about making flowers, but the instructions didn't seem as descriptive as yours and I lost the plot very quickly! ... having said that I'd have to have a crash course in slip stitching and a lot of trial and error getting all that rolling and ruffling to work ... but mayne I'll get there in time for Spring! ;)

  4. I am thinking pretty clips for my hair seeing as most store A) want to charge an arm and a leg B) I have tons of scraps C) I love that it is easy to do!

  5. Glad you like them Giles and Brandy! Giles, if there's anything you're stuck on let me know and I'll try and explain it better. Brandy, it's so quick you'll have a ton of them before you know it and wonder what you're going to do with them!

  6. so pretty! what a great li'l tutorial. i do have a thing for fabric flowers ....

  7. My mum makes roses out of material..ive shared the link of your page with her on fb.

  8. Thanks Mrs SB! I always like to feed a good addiction!

    Thank you Pearl!