Make a botanical chandelier, cascading with tropical paper leaves and flowers
Lampshade ring with bulb holder, approx. 28cm (11") in diameter Lampshade ring without bulb holder, approx. 23cm (91/ 8") in diameter 11 30cm (117/ 8") lengths of floral wire Flat or round-nosed pliers with wire cutters Green floral tape All-purpose adhesive Fire retardant spray A4 paper, six sheets in blush pink, four sheets in dark green, three sheets in sage green, two sheets in bright green and one sheet each in pastel pink, bright yellow, white and mustard Craft knife Cutting mat Embossing tool Trailing vines, pink polka dot plant leaves, lily-like blooms and must-have monstera – this tropical papercut project knows the way to our plant-loving hearts.
It’s made on a lampshade base (imagine the amazing shadows it’ll cast), but will look just as beautiful as a hanging decoration.
Always use with low-heat LED bulbs and fire retardant spray. Do not leave unattended.
Wrap the lampshade rings with floral tape, only wrapping around the outer ring, not on the central bulb holder section. When using floral tape, stretch the tape as you work to release the glue and allow the tape to stick to itself. Next, join the two rings by binding the crossovers with floral wire and adding a couple of additional lengths of wire to hold the rings in position, winding one end of each piece of wire around each ring.
Using the templates on page 96 and a craft knife and cutting mat, cut four flowers in white paper, four in pastel pink paper and four in bright yellow paper. Cut 12 flower centres in mustard paper. Next, cut 24 of leaf 1 in blush pink paper, 12 of leaf 2 in dark green paper and 12 of leaf 3 in sage green paper – these three shapes make up the variegated leaves. Next, cut four of leaf 4 in dark green paper and four of leaf 5 in each of the blush pink, dark green and bright green papers – 12 in total. From the sage green paper, cut four of leaf 6. Cut four of leaf 7 from the bright green paper. From the blush pink paper, cut 10 of leaf 8, five of leaf 9 and five of leaf 10. Cut five of leaf 11 from the dark green paper. From the bright green paper, cut five of leaf 12 and five of leaf 13. Cut five of leaf 14 and five of leaf 15 from
the sage green paper. Cutting towards you is safest as you’ll have the most control over the knife. Hold the paper with your other hand, rotating it to always cut towards the body.
Use an embossing tool and ruler to score the crease lines shown on the templates. To do this, line up the ruler, then run the end of the embossing tool alongside it, pressing to create an indentation.
Separate the pieces into flower pieces, full leaf/full vine pieces and variegated leaf pieces. Take the full leaf/vine pieces and fold along all scored lines. To do this on the smaller leaves, turn the piece upside down and push the side of one finger along the score from the back while squeezing the sides of the leaf with the other hand.
Cut 24 10cm (4") lengths of floral wire using wire cutter pliers.
Take the variegated leaf pieces and fold along all scored lines. Position one pink leaf piece with a valley fold, so with the paper on either side of the fold pointing upwards. Glue a cut piece of wire onto the leaf using all-purpose adhesive, aligning the wire with the fold and leaving a 2cm ( ") gap at the pointed end of the leaf. The wire should protrude the base of the leaf by around 3.5cm (13/ 8"). Repeat this step for all the pink variegated leaf pieces.
Glue the green variegated leaf pieces onto the wired leaves in the positions shown, building up in layers with the dark pieces on top.
Fold along all the scored lines on the flowers. Hold the first petal with a mountain fold, so the paper on either side of the fold pointing downwards. Run the ruler edge along the back of each petal while pressing on the front with your thumb to curl. Repeat for all petals.
Cut 12 7cm (2 ") lengths of floral wire using wire cutter pliers. Use the tips of the pliers to bend one end of each piece into a loop.
Wrap a petal piece around the wire, just below the loop. Overlap and glue the end two petals, aligning the edges. Apply a dot of glue to the base of the wire loop, then press the flower up to the loop. Take a flower centre piece and fold the stamen up. Apply glue to the back of the centre and press onto the top of the wire loop. Repeat for all the flowers.
Attach all the non-wired leaves and vines to the lampshade rings, positioning the larger pieces on the inner ring and smaller pieces on the outer ring. Fold the end of each stem up and over the ring and glue it onto the back of the leaf.
Fix the wired leaves and flowers to the outer lampshade ring by wrapping the wires around the ring. Apply fire retardant spray following the manufacturer’s instructions and leave to dry.