Are my paper flowers compostable? YES!!!

Being made from 100% natural materials, it might seem obvious that my paper flowers would be compostable. But in the name of science and curiosity, I thought I would experiment with one.

paper flowers are compostable

So a few months ago, I took a tissue paper rose and securely tied a length of thick plastic string to it (left image). I then placed it on my home compost pile and attached the string to the top.

Over the months the pile grew with garden and household waste. But the vegetation was also breaking down, by all the worms and organisms, taking the rose and string with it. By the time the pile needed turning four months later the string was nearly at the bottom (centre image).

After a hot half hour forking the vegetation/compost from one bin to another, I finally reach the end of the string. I was very careful not to damage any remains of the rose as I uncovered the string. But the rose head and stem had completely disappeared just leaving a small stump within the plastic knot (right image).I wasn’t surprised, but still very pleased to see the paper flower had turned into compost. I wouldn’t say my compost making is brilliant, so if the flowers break down in mine they certainly will in yours!

It’s lovely to be able to create beautiful paper flowers that have a long life. But also knowing that they will easily return to nature when no longer needed is wonderful.

15 July 2021

Pretty pale blue paper Delphinium flower

This is my latest tissue paper experiment, a pale blue Delphinium flower, in single form. They are made from the tissue paper coloured with the Sloe berry dye I made last month.

pale blue paper delphinium flowers

Of course real Delphiniums have lots of flowers on one stem, but as I don’t use wire in any of my flowers I can only make a single flower for each cane stem. They still look pretty though and it might even be an advantage being a single flower when used in a bouquet.

pale blue tissue paper flowers

24 June 2021

Handmade delicate white Alstroemeria flowers

I made these lovely little white Alstroemeria flowers for a photoshoot I recently had the pleasure of being part of – photos to come shortly!

paper alstroemerias

The flowers were easy to make with only 6 petals, but painting all the tiny speckles was quite time consuming.

white alstroemeria

I love Alstroemerias, they are jolly little flowers and remind me of my own wedding bouquet.

2 June 2021

Delicate pale yellow paper tulips

A lovely little bunch of pale yellow paper tulips and dried Canary grasses in my great, great grandfather’s mustard pot! The pot is part of a cruet set he won for his prize vegetables back in the 1940s.

I used the bark from the Mahonia shrub in my garden to make a rich yellow dye. It only takes a second to turn the tissue paper a lovely pale yellow. I only dipped the edges of the paper to get the two tone effect on the petals.

pale yellow paper tulips

8 April 2021

Making a tissue paper rose

A very quick look at how I make my tissue paper roses.

The petal templates were copied from a real rose. Here I have used onion skin dyed paper for the 37 petals. The petals are curled and then attached to a Midelino stick using homemade glue.

cutting and glueing

Red cabbage makes a lovely purple colour but by adding a little ordinary cooking bicarbonate of soda it turns a teal colour. Red cabbage is ph sensitive, it turns pink with vinegar! I then over dyed the pale orange onion dyed paper with the cabbage to produce an olive green.

natural plant dyes

The sepals are made from the green tissue. And the stem is covered with thin strips wound around it.

orange tissue paper roses

8 March 2021

Pale yellow paper garden roses

More roses!!

The yellow petals are dyed with Gorse flowers, the orange stamens dyed with dried onion skins, and the green sepals and stems dyed with onion and then over dyed with red cabbage. All glued together with homemade glue on natural Midelino sticks. Totally biodegradable!

pale yellow paper garden roses

8 February 2021

Hybrid tea roses with pink centres

Three beautiful paper hybrid tea shaped roses with delicate pink centres.

The pink dye came from sloe berries I picked last autumn then frozen to use later. The paper for the outer petals was also dipped briefly in the dye but then turned a slight grey colour when dried. Unfortunately they just look white in the photos. All part of the experimenting fun!

tissue paper roses

1 February 2021

Practising new flowers with plain tissue paper

As this is a new venture for me, I first practise new flowers with plain tissue paper. Adjusting the petal shapes, sizes and numbers needed to produce a flower that I’m happy with.

plain paper tea rose

plain paper garden rose

plain paper ranunculus

I make petal templates cut out of card and an instruction sheet to remind me.

templates

25 January 2021

My first tissue paper roses

Before I start researching new eco friendly materials I have decided to do my experimenting with things I already have. So these first tissue paper roses are made from ordinary florists white tissue paper and glued with PVA adhesive.
I have used natural plant dyes to colour the petals and leaves. But the leaves are also painted with an extra watercolour wash to make them a darker green.

yellow paper roses

pale yellow paper roses

13 January 2021