Party Craft Tutorials

Spring Wreaths

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First of all I’d like to wish each and every one of you a Happy New Year! This post comes a little later than expected as I’ve been a little busy in my workroom creating these beauties. I like to describe them as being Spring wreaths, as the pastel colours remind me immensely of my favourite season. Do you agree?

I used foam wreath bases which are readily available from most craft stores and come in many different shapes and sizes. I find Hobbycraft generally has a good selection and that is where mine came from. I had once intended to teach myself patchwork and quilting but never got around to it (it’s still on my bucket list) and at the time, I bought a lot of fat quarters. I thought it’d be the perfect time to use some of them up, seeing as though they were looking rather lonely!

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I began by cutting the fabric into long strips. I then wound each piece of fabric over the base of the wreath, using a hot glue gun to secure the fabric as I went along. A hot glue gun will definitely be your best friend for this, I promise!

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As you can see, I then made some beautiful felt flowers and I’ll be posting a felt flower tutorial very soon, as I have an idea up my sleeve which I’m pretty sure you’re going to love. For now, a simple ‘felt flower tutorial’ google search should point you in the right direction. The only materials you should need are felt, scissors (don’t use your best fabric ones, as felt causes scissors to become quite blunt over time) a hot glue gun and some pretty embellishments such as buttons or beads. Once you’re finished making the felt flowers, you can use your hot glue gun to secure them into place on the wreath.

I have lots of ribbon and twine in my workroom so fortunately for me, it wasn’t too much of a task to find some left overs for the hanging ribbon.

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Here are some close up’s of my finished wreaths to give you some inspiration.

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Voila! I hope I’ve given you the creative bug for wreath making and I promise you my felt flower tutorials will be coming soon. You can call this a little teaser. As you may know, craft tutorials are a big love of mine and I have many more here, which you may wish to check out. If you would like to see more of my finished crafts, you can find Paper Doily Party Shop on etsy.

Happy crafting!

DIY Party Crafts · Uncategorized

Christmas Tree Cupcake Liner Garland

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As my regular readers may know, I moved house in July of this year and have just taken the festive decorations out of storage. This house is a brand new build, so it’s the first time it’s been decorated for Christmas. How special is that? I’ve loved giving it lots of festive cheer over the past few weeks.

I’m still getting to know where certain decorations are best placed and I’ve moved the Christmas tree twice already. Yes, really! I happened to have a really bare wall in the hallway and thought I’d make something bright and colourful to cheer it up a little. I enjoy hand making at least one decoration each year, as it feels much more unique and special than purchasing, doesn’t it?

Anyway, with that ramble over, I just wanted to let you know that I had so much fun making this christmas tree garland that I decided to make a tutorial for you. Excited? Once you’ve found the materials below, you’ll be good to go. You’ll need:

Materials:

  • A selection of your favourite cupcake liners/wrappers
  • Double sided selotape
  • Clear selotape
  • Scissors
  • Star paper cutter (optional)
  • Twine, thread or ribbon
  • Glitter Paper, or other complimentary decorative paper

 

Method:

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First of all, take 3 of your cupcake liners/wrappers and fold them in half, and in half again, like so.

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Cut three small strips of double sided selotape and attach them to the inside of all of your cupcake liners/wrappers, like so. After you’ve done that, turn your trees over to their reverse side.

Place them together exactly where you want them (in the shape of a tree) and take two strips of clear selotape. Place the selotape on top of the middle and bottom pointed edges on the reverse side. Turn your tree over to the correct side and you should have something similar to the image above.

I used different sized cupcake liners/wrappers for my garland which created a beautiful layered effect. I had some mini cupcake wrappers in the cupboard, similar to what you’d use for making truffles, petits fours etc. These worked very well in giving the garland a bit of interest/uniqueness.

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If you have a star shaped paper cutter, now is the time to cut out stars for your Christmas trees. You can either use a small piece of double sided selotape to attach it to the tree, or some glue. I used glitter paper for the stars, but any paper that works well with your theme will do the trick.

If you don’t have a star paper cutter, it’s not a problem. You can just draw the outline to a star on the reverse side of the glitter paper and use a sharp pair of scissors to cut it out. You also don’t have to use star shapes, heart shapes would look nice, as would most other decorative shapes.

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Once you’ve made enough trees for your desired garland length, take your ribbon or twine and your trusty clear selotape. Turn your Christmas trees onto their reverse sides, with the twine laid out in front of you. Cut a small strip of clear tape per tree and attach them together by placing a small strip of the clear tape in between the twine and the back of the paper star. Voila!

You now have yourself a beautiful Christmas tree garland made out of inexpensive materials and plenty of love and care. Enjoy and do let me know if I’ve inspired you to make your own!

DIY Party Crafts · Uncategorized

DIY Christmas Gift Wrapping

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Happy December all! It’s that time of year when Christmas shopping becomes a priority for many of you, as do copious amounts of toasty hot chocolates with marshmallows, right? I absolutely love gift wrapping, so I usually wrap the gifts as immediately as possible after getting them home. However, I do realise this isn’t normal and many people leave gift wrapping until the last minute.

There is such an incredible selection of gift wrapping available, the choice can be overwhelming. I personally like to have one specific theme, so all of my gifts look beautifully styled and uniform under the Christmas tree. Brown paper, available from most stationery shops and supermarkets is my favourite wrapping paper to use. If you’re anything like me and happen to have a very large patterned paper stash, you can really go to town with the personalisation. The brown paper gives the gifts a fabulously blank canvas, meaning you can use any colour, theme or style of paper on top of it.

For these gifts here, I used the brown packing paper as a base and then simply cut several strips of patterned paper, attaching them to the present with double sided sticky tape. (Remember not to use too much of this though, given as though they need to be relatively easy to open on the big day). I’ve been rather guilty of making presents too hard to unwrap before, sometimes wrapping them in several layers of paper to add to the anticipation. I’ll be quiet now, shall I!?

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I bought a star paper cutter from Hobbycraft some time ago. This isn’t a sponsored post, I just happen to love using them. I have them in all shapes and sizes and decided to make little star wands and star embellishments for the gift tags.

The star wands were made by cutting two stars out of equal size. I then took a bamboo skewer and some double sided selotape. (Selotape becomes a lifesaver this time of year, doesn’t it?) I turned both stars over onto their reverse side and attached several strips of double sided tape to them. I then placed the skewer on top of one of the stars and finished the wand by placing the remaining star on top of it. The beautiful thing about the star wands, is that they can also be used as cake or cupcake toppers or placed in clear jars as table decorations, meaning the theme can run through your house this Christmas.

You may have also noticed a patterned peg in one of the images above also? This is a washi tape peg and can easily be created at home and used for your Christmas gift wrapping. You can see my earlier washi tape peg tutorial here.

The brown gift tags were purchased from Amazon some time ago. I used my small star paper cutter to cut out several silver glittery stars and attached them to each gift tag with a small strip of double sided selotape. I left a space for writing the recipients name. A gold pen would be perfect for this. You can also handstamp the gift tags like I have done here. (scroll down to number three).

I had some beautiful, sparkly gold sewing thread left over from a previous project. This was wrapped around the present horizontally and threaded through the gift tag. I cut a second, smaller piece of the gold thread and used it to attach the wand to the gift tag and main piece of gold thread. Alternatively you can use decorative ribbon or twine, the choice is yours entirely.

Voila! I’m so happy to show you the final result above, which I am very pleased with! I really hope I have inspired you to start your Christmas gift wrapping earlier than usual. Do let me know if you decide to use my tutorial as a basis for your gift wrapping, I’d love to know.

 

Party Craft Tutorials · Uncategorized

Crochet Christmas Stocking

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Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without stockings, right? Anybody who knows me well knows that it doesn’t take much effort for me to get into the festive spirit. I’ve been known to have a fully decorated Christmas tree in the lounge by mid November before, but this year I’m trying to be very controlled by holding off until December 1st. How very grown up of me. *giggles!

I browsed the web for an easy crocheted Christmas stocking pattern and happened to come across this. It’s an American pattern, so be sure to use a crochet stitch conversion chart if you’re based elsewhere. Being the creative person that I am, I didn’t feel like using the specified yarn, colours or finish suggested. I free-styled and feel very pleased with the final result. I feel it’s one step further to writing my own patterns, which I’m keen to experiment with in the new year.

For the crocheted bow, there are a multitude of patterns online, I used the Kat Goldin one and added some pom poms for extra prettiness.

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Here’s a close up. I’m very tempted to make a second stocking with a light pink bow for a real kitsch Christmas kind of feel. I can imagine this stocking hanging from a pretty fireplace until Christmas Eve, when it’s obviously only right to leave it at the end of your bed. These crocheted stockings also make the perfect gift for a special family member or friend as they are reasonably quick to make. (I spent a few hours each evening, over the course of a few days crocheting mine). I think handmade gifts add that extra special touch to Christmas and surely mean so much more to the recipient when you’ve put your heart and soul into it.

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As Felix (the miniature poodle) spent so many hours cuddling me whilst I was crocheting the stocking, I felt it was only right to include his picture. Here he is doing what he does best, snoozing!

I really hope I’ve inspired your Christmas crafting and I’m looking forward to working on many more crafty blog posts in the coming weeks. I’d love to hear from you and see your results if you decide to crochet this beautiful stocking.

 

In My Studio · Party Craft Tutorials

10 festive crafts I’ve made this month

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1. Christmas preparations are in full swing here and what better way to use up leftover felt balls? I went through a foam wreath buying stage several months ago, with plans of making lots of new ones for my shop. I have so many creative ideas running through my head on a daily basis, it’s easy to forget good intentions like this! I recently had a bit of a clear out of my craft space and suddenly remembered what they were for. I’ve made two so far, one Christmas themed one and a pink and purple one. I’m amazed at just how much they transform a space! The crochet christmas decorations were inspired by this months Simply Crochet Magazine (issue 38).

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2. You know how I mentioned above that Christmas preparations are in full swing here? It wouldn’t be Christmas without some festive cake toppers, right? These ones certainly made me smile and undoubtedly add a lot of cheer to your standard Christmas cake.

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3. I recently purchased a set of ‘love’ stamps and some new ink with the intention of making these. They are bound to look gorgeous on Christmas presents and were so easy to make. I bought some blank gift tags and added my own twine for a rustic look. I then used my trusty heart shaped paper cutter to cut out the patterned papers. Once the hearts were in place, I got creative with the hand stamping and voila! If you’re anything like me and are planning on making a lot of homemade gifts this Christmas (including chutney and jam, which are favourite options of mine) these are the perfect labels!

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4. As you may already know, crochet is a huge hobby of mine and definitely takes up a large proportion of my spare time. I couldn’t resist making a festive garland in kitsch Christmas colours. The piece of driftwood used as a photographic prop to drape the garland on, travelled all the way from Sandymouth Beach on a recent weekend away. How special is that? If you’re feeling inspired, head on over to Cherry Heart blog for the ‘twinkler stars’ pattern. I can thoroughly recommend it.

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5. I couldn’t just stop at one set of gift tags, they were far too addictive and enjoyable to make. After sorting through my huge stash of Christmas papers, I came across these. If you’re looking to make your own gift tags, then you must invest in a star paper cutter (and some pretty twine, as there’s always space for twine, right?) The beauty of handmade gift tags is that they can be made to suit your gift wrapping theme perfectly! They also look wonderful sitting under the tree and have a unique touch of handmade.

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6. I went through a phase of making lots of washi tape pegs several months ago and found them so addictive (like most crafts). I still have a HUGE washi tape supply and seem to have accumulated a large amount of these pegs. Gift wrapping has never looked so lovely. They seem to make everything look that extra bit special. They are particularly useful for Christmas parties, especially if you’re having a sweet festive buffet and would like your guests to take home some home baked sweets and treats.

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7. You must be noticing a theme with the gift tags? I just love them (in all colours, shapes and sizes). These scalloped gift tags have a particularly crafty feel to them and I can definitely see my presents looking extra fabulous when it’s Christmas time next month! I like to use matching ribbon or twine to give them that extra special touch. Make sure you have your best fountain pen ready for writing on the reverse side!

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8. Christmas is all about that extra bit of sparkle isn’t it? These glittery heart cake toppers are a favourite of mine, particularly if you’re looking to make a non traditional set of cake toppers for your Christmas cake. I used my heart paper cutter to cut out the shapes (2 hearts of the same size, per cake topper). I then used some double sided selotape on the reverse side of half of the hearts, which held the bamboo skewers in place nicely. To finish off, I took all of the remaining hearts and placed them on top of the skewers, (with the sparkly side facing me) and pressed down to stick in place. This was the end result, of which I’m rather pleased with!

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9. Felt ball garlands are perfect when made this time of year. They look absolutely beautiful draped over a Christmas tree or hanging from a fireplace. I just can’t get enough of making them (in all colours and shapes and sizes!) I wrote a tutorial on how to make your very own here.

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10. Any christmas crafting wouldn’t be complete without a large mug of hot chocolate, right? The cream and marshmellows are such a yummy addition. You should go and make one right this instant, you know you want to!

Party Craft Tutorials

Heart & Flower Crochet Cake Topper

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If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you’ll be aware of my long standing crochet addiction. As I also happen to adore party decorations, I’m always looking for new ways of combining the two. Why not? Cake toppers are one of the easiest and quickest crochet party decorations to make, as you only require a few shapes to make something special. Although crocheted garlands and wreaths are undoubtedly stunning, they require a lot more work and if you’re anything like me, sometimes you just need some quick satisfaction!

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I recently bought the rather stunning ‘Crochet Home’ book by crochet designer, Emma Lamb. The beautiful flower patterns were found in the book and the heart pattern was found in an old edition of my ever so growing collection of Simply Crochet Magazine. You’ll be able to search the web for similar heart patterns if you don’t have access to the magazines. Try some of these, but be sure to use a crochet stitch conversion chart depending on what country you’re crocheting from.

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After crocheting all four of these shapes, I sewed them all together with some left over yarn in the same colour as previously used. I then took two bamboo skewers (you can buy these from any supermarket) and attached them. This was achieved by sewing the skewers into each end piece with yarn to ensure they were secure. You’ll need a darning needle and some sharp scissors to do this, alongside your usual crochet hook.

Voila! Are you impressed? If you have a special occasion coming up and are looking for a fabulous edition to your cake, look no further! There are so many colour, texture and weight choices in terms of the yarn, you can definitely make it to suit your occasion. There are also so many patterns for similar sized shapes in a multitude of designs, so you can really go wild.

Please do let me know if you decide to make one similar, I’d love to see your results. Before you go, you may also love to see my other inspiring party craft tutorials here.

Party Recipes

How to make the perfect Victoria sponge cake

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Andrew, my husband recently celebrated his birthday and requested his favourite cake. He absolutely adores Victoria sponge cake and so do I for that matter. I’ve made many Victoria sponge cakes over the past few years and I’ve built up a certain technique due to all of that practice! You know what they say about practice making perfect! The last one I made was actually the best one in a long time, so I just had to share the results with you.

If you’re planning an afternoon tea party, yummy dessert table or just wanting to bake for a special someone, then this cake is a very good option. It’s very simple to make using my method and it’s a versatile bake. You can add fresh strawberries to it for extra deliciousness and also add flowers for decoration. You can also pipe some buttercream swirls on the top of the cake if you’re feeling in a decorative mood. You can add different flavours of jam or replace the jam with lemon curd. Why not? For this blog post though, I’ll be giving you my recipe for the classic version.

Ingredients

200g caster sugar

200g softened butter, at room temperature

4 eggs, beaten

200g self raising flour

1 tsp baking powder

2 tbsp milk

For the filling

100g butter, softened

140g icing sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract (optional)

4 tbsp strawberry or raspberry jam

icing sugar, to decorate

Method

  1. Heat the oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5. Grease and line two 20 centimetre sandwich tins. Soften the butter and sugar until the mixture is of a creamy, pale consistency. Slowly add the beaten eggs and milk. Sift the flour and baking powder into the mixture. Gently mix until all of the ingredients together until fully combined. If using a mixer, don’t mix for longer than 2 minutes to avoid over mixing.
  2. Divide the mixture between the prepared tins. Smooth the surface with a spatula or the back of a spoon, then bake for 20 minutes until golden and the cake springs back when pressed. Leave the cakes in their tins for 5 minutes, before turning out on a wire rack to cool completely.
  3. To make the filling, beat the butter until smooth and creamy and slowly sift the icing sugar into the mixture. Beat in the vanilla extract if you’re using it. Spread the jam over the bottom layer of the cake using a palette knife. Take a piping back and large star nozzle and pipe stars/shells on top of the jam across the entire bottom layer of the cake, leaving a bit of room around the outside. Carefully place the top layer of the cake on top of this layer. If you don’t have the piping tools, you can use your palette knife to spread the buttercream on the underside of the remaining layer, before sandwiching both layers together. Dust the top of the cake with icing sugar. Your cake will keep in an airtight container for 2 days.

Enjoy and do let me know if you decide to use my recipe. I’d love to hear your thoughts and see your pictures.

DIY Party Crafts · In My Studio · Party Craft Tutorials

Crochet Rose Garland

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Hello all! Do you remember my crochet rose cake toppers blog post which I posted earlier this week? Well, I still have the crocheted rose bug and haven’t stopped making them ever since. Have you experienced that feeling when you’ve crocheted something so many times, you’re able to memorise the pattern? Yes, that! If you’d like to take a peek at the pattern, you can follow the blog link above to the original post. I warn you though, it’s addictive!

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I’m very impressed at how versatile these crocheted roses are. If you’ve visited Paper Doily Party Shop you’ll know that I’ve made my fair share of garlands over recent months. I just love the fact that they can transform any space into something beautiful, particularly when used for a special occasion. I just had to share my recent creation with you. This particular garland was made for a special friend who wanted to brighten up her home. Obviously I couldn’t let it out of my workroom before taking some gorgeous photographs of it. 

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What are your thoughts? Have I inspired you? Garlands are one of my favourite party decorations and I absolutely love making them. I’m definitely planning on making more. Would you be interested in seeing some DIY party garland blog posts? Do let me know if so, as it’ll be very enjoyable task. I hope you all have a wonderful weekend.

Party Craft Tutorials

Crochet Rose Cake Toppers

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Happy Tuesday all! I hope this week has been kind to you so far. As the weather in Somerset has been pretty dismal for the past few days, I decided to cheer myself (and my workroom) up with these beautifully vibrant crochet rose cake toppers. If you’re a regular reader, you may have noticed that I adore these four colours and find any excuse possible to use them in my craft projects.

These roses are adapted from this pattern which I found several weeks ago during one of my late night Pinterest spree’s. (We’ve all been there, right?) Since then I’ve been itching to make some cake toppers out of it. I actually made mine slightly bigger than the pattern suggests. For your reference, it’s a UK pattern, so if you’re based elsewhere, you may need to use this ever so trusty crochet conversion stitch chart to make sense of it. I used Patons Extrafine Merino wool to make the roses and I was suitably impressed. It was beautiful to work with and I think I may have just found my favourite yarn. (I’m so obsessed with yarn, I’m sure there will be another favourite next week!)

Just before finishing each rose I left a long yarn tail which was used for the next part. I took four bamboo sticks (approximately 20 centimetres in length) and carefully weaved them through the back of each rose. I then took a large needle and threaded these in place using the yarn tail mentioned above. The yarn tail was then darned through the back each rose and snipped off. Voila!

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If you’re looking to create a cake centrepiece then these are the perfect option. If you’re a crocheter, they are fairly easy to make, albeit the sewing part being a little fiddly until you get the hang of it.

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They can also be placed into little jars as table centrepieces. This is a perfect idea for weddings or other special events where you’re looking for a touch of handmade.

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Here’s a close up for you. Are you feeling inspired yet? I’d love to see your cake toppers if you decide to make some. You may also like to have a browse through my other tutorials for more cake topper ideas (and a few tasty recipes… you’ve been warned). Happy crafting!

DIY Party Crafts · Party Craft Tutorials

Paper Rosette Cake/Cupcake Topper Tutorial

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Hello all! Before I start this off, I’d just like to say a HUGE thank you to you, my lovely followers for coming back for a read after a fairly long absence on my part. Paper Doily was put on hold over several weeks whilst my lovely husband and I (and our furry animals) moved into our new home. Now we are all settled in, I’m absolutely thrilled to be back in business alongside planning and writing lots of crafty blog posts for you!

I’ve been meaning to work on this paper rosette cake topper tutorial for some time. They were such an enjoyable make and they really cheered up my workspace. If you have a special celebration coming up which calls for a fun, vibrant cake decoration which requires minimal effort but happens to look fabulous, go and make a large mug of tea, find a comfy chair and read on. You’ll be pleasantly suprised how easy and effective these are.

To make these paper rosette cupcake/cake toppers, you’ll need the following materials:

  • Patterned paper (Mine was patterned on both sides, but this isn’t essential)
  • All purpose glue
  • Bamboo skewers
  • Sharp pair of scissors
  • Pencil, ruler and eraser
  • Double sided sticky tape

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Take your chosen paper/s and divide it into 4 straight, equal strips. Once measured, use your scissors to cut them. There isn’t a set length or width to work by, this is entirely dependable on the size of the paper rosettes you are planning on making. Large/wide strips make for a large rosette and smaller strips make for a small rosette. You can experiment with this.

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Fold the strips in half lengthways and cut them in the middle. You should then have 8 pieces of paper to hand.

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Next you’ll need to fold your shapes into concertina’s as shown above, trying to make the folds as even as possible.

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Take your double sided sticky tape and place a strip of it on one end. You will then need to fold each of the concertina’s in half, pressing the double sided sticky tape together as you go.

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Your concertina’s should be looking like this and you should finish with eight. (This was a work in progress shot).

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Once finished, place a strip of double sided sticky tape on each end of your concertina’s. Once you’ve peeled the backing off of the tape, you’ll be able to place each concertina together, attaching them all together in a circle. Once finished, you should have a beautiful paper rosette looking similar to this one below.

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At this point, you can leave the paper rosettes as they are and simply use them as decorations, either on a wreath or as a garland, or to embellish party bags or special gifts. They also make wonderful table decorations. The possibilities really are endless with these beauties!

If you’re making these to decorate a special cake or set of cupcakes, you’ll need to take your bamboo skewers and glue at this point. If you’d like to vary the height of the rosette cake/cupcake toppers, take a sharp pair of scissors and trim the bamboo skewers down to your desired length at this point. If you’re planning on decorating a cake with them, I think they look very effective when they are cut to varying lengths as it allows each one of them to stand out.

Turn the paper rosette over to the reverse side and place some glue in one of the concertina folds. Take your bamboo skewer and place it over the glue. Leave to dry completely.

Voila! Feeling impressed and inspired? I very much hope so. I’d love to see your finished results if you decide to make them! If you’re feeling in the mood for more craft tutorials, you can check out my full collection here. Enjoy!

A polite reminder: This tutorial is for personal use only and should not be reproduced or sold. ©Paper Doily Party Shop