SILK PEONY FLOWER
This is a simple way to make a pretty and realistic bloom to decorate a straw hat or to use as a brooch or corsage.
YOU WILL NEED Pencil Small fabric scissors Quarter to half a metre of white pure silk (such as Chinese Silk Paj available from candh.co.uk) Sheets of scrap paper Medium paintbrush Pebeo Setacolor fabric paint in cherry red, garnet red, buttercup, light/leaf green and cornflower blue (available from pullingers.com) Old plate (for paint) Fine paintbrush Sheets of kitchen paper Small wide-area brush or medium hog-hair brush Fray stop (available from hobbycraft.co.uk) Wooden skewers Jam jar Yellow stamens (available from hobbycraft.co.uk) Tape Fabric glue Cotton sheeting
Draw on and cut out seven circles from the silk – two 12cm in diameter, two 10cm, two 8cm and one 6cm. Drawing around the edge of right-size cups and small bowls may help with this. 2 Fold each silk circle into quarters and, with the point at the bottom and starting 1cm up from this, trim the two long edges to look like the sides of a petal. Cut the top curved edge in a wave motion to create the top of a petal. Once opened out, you should have four connected petals in a flower shape (as seen above) for each circle. 3 Place the open silk flowers on scrap paper on a flat surface and brush a little water over each petal. 4 Using a medium-sized paintbrush, water down a little of the cherry red paint on an old plate and add colour to each petal from the centre outwards, leaving the tips white. 5 To add detail to each petal, using a fine paintbrush lightly covered with garnet red (not watered down), lightly brush lines of paint outwards from the centre. Make the colour more intense on the smaller petals, which will become the centre of the flower. Soften any hard lines with a little water. Place on kitchen roll to dry. 6 Once dry, turn the flowers over on a wipeable surface, cover the backs with a thin layer of fray stop using a wide
paintbrush. 7 Hang these, glue side up, so they resemble closed flowers, over the end of wooden skewers, which are standing in a jam jar to dry. 8 Once dry, make a hole in the centre of each flower using the end of the skewer. 9 Fold a bunch of wired stamens in half and wrap a piece of tape around the folded end to secure in place. Push this end through each flower, starting with the smallest to the largest to assemble the layers. 10 Once all the pieces are in place, apply fabric glue around the inside hole of the last flower, pinch the back of the flowers together to secure and leave upside down to dry. 11 For the leaves (you will need four for each peony), mix the light green paint with a blob of buttercup yellow. Water this down and paint leaf shapes onto a piece of cotton. 12 Add a small amount of cornflower blue to the green to create a darker tone to use for the vein details. Allow to dry. 13 Once dry, cut out the leaf shapes, creating indents along the edges for a more realistic finish. 14 Paint the backs with fray stop and drape each one over the top of a closed bottle of fabric paint so they dry slightly curled. 15 Once dry, attach the leaves to the back of the flower using fabric glue. 16 Sew to a piece of ribbon to attach to a hat or a badge pin to turn into a brooch.