Welcome to my journal

A journey into beautiful paper flowers

Follow my experiments exploring the art of paper flower making, the science of natural dyes and researching eco-friendly materials. And now creating delicate wedding bouquets, buttonholes and arrangements that are both beautiful and kind to the planet.

Pink peony bouquet in September!

pink peony bouquet

Who says you can’t have a pink peony bouquet in September, or October, or any month of the year!!

One of the great advantages of paper flowers is they’re never out of season. This bouquet of gorgeous frilly pink paper peonies is combined with delicate dried Sea Lavender. Beautiful and ready to carry down the aisle whatever time of year you choose for your special day.

pink tissue paper peonies

Another advantage is that paper flowers can be made to any size. Whereas fresh peonies can be quite large, paper ones are just right! I have also made a buttonhole to match with a smaller peony flower, an image can be found on my flowers page.

21 September 2021

New box inner to hold bouquet

new box inner

I’m so excited to see that my new box inner to hold a bouquet works beautifully.

The main difficulty when placing a delicate bouquet in a box is that it can’t be easily wrapped and any movement against the sides will potentially damage it.

After much head scratching and cardboard folding I have finally designed a new, and unique, way to hold a bouquet. The inner holds the bouquet securely in the centre of the box with no extra packing. It looks professional and allows the client to easily remove the bouquet. So I can now send bouquets safely in the post to anywhere in the UK.

The cardboard inner is secured to the inside of the box with paper tape. And the bouquet and buttonhole are attached with natural twine. No plastic tape or glue are used, so the whole box is fully recyclable.

The video shows the box already open and how the inner folds down to allow access to the secured bouquet. When the box is shut the inner also pinches the bouquet tight. And the buttonhole is securely tied to the platform.

As an experiment, this box and bouquet took a little trip to Manchester and back. The bouquet was in perfect condition after each journey, with no damage at all to the dried or paper flowers. Thank you Royal Mail!

18 August 2021

Deep pink dye and something delicious for dinner!

pink paper peony flower

I have found real pink dye a hard colour to achieve with natural plants. Pear tree bark produces a lovely peachy colour but it’s not really pink. Pondering what is really pink and in season at the moment, beetroot came to mind. So I boiled a few and made a batch of deep pink dye. And something delicious for dinner!

Now the crunch! What colour would it dye the paper, if at all? Well it didn’t really dye the paper, it was more of a colouring like paint. It didn’t matter how long the paper was in the dye bath it came out the same shade. But what a colour it was! Wow, definitely pink!

A pink as bright as this could only be for one flower – a peony! So with my new pink paper I set about designing a new flower to go with it. I often find real peonies are a little large for a bridal bouquet, so I decided to make mine a fraction smaller. Here is the first paper peony flower, with many more to come.

12 August 2021

Summers day meadow wedding

I loved making this pretty little bridal bouquet of paper flowers and dried grasses. The bouquet is so light and delicate just right for a hot summers day meadow wedding.
 
summer wedding bouquet
The flowers are my interpretation of pale blue Delphiniums, yellow Coreopsis and white daisies. I collected the wild grasses and False baby’s breath locally and dried them. 
 
paper meadow flower bouquet
 
 
paper flowers and dried grasses bouquet
All sustainable and compostable 🙂
 
22 July 2012

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

Intimate and sustainable wedding photoshoot

I was lucky enough to be invited to join other local suppliers taking part in a recent sustainable wedding photoshoot. Organised by the very talented Gayle of Live Vibe, it was to replicate an intimate and sustainable wedding. Her concept was to show how a wedding can be both beautiful and eco-friendly.

invite to eco wedding

I’m now excited to say that the photos taken by Cindy Kitchker Photography and Gemma Rose Photography (second shooter) are featured on the Green Union wedding blog. Green Union is a very popular online eco-friendly/ethical wedding and lifestyle resource for conscious couple.

Here are just a few of the excellent photos they took and a link to the lovely video by Claire Deacon Films.

The venue

barn wedding venue

eco wedding styling

The venue for the day was Dairyhouse Farm near Langport. A lovely rustic barn overlooking the Somerset Levels ideal for a country wedding. With tables and extra lighting hired from South West Marquees the scene was set for Gayle to add her unique props and decorations. All the wood and foliage was foraged from her family’s farm. Her collection of vintage bottles and jars were filled with foliage and my paper flowers.

The couple

paper wedding flowers

The models, a couple in real life, were Courtney Winkworth and James Ried. Courtney wore a beautiful dress from Rookery Bridal and James a suit from Astaires. Hair and makeup artist, Leanna Biggs, gave Courtney an elegant natural look.

The bride carried a bouquet of paper roses in peach, pale yellow and orange, and white Alstroemeria flowers. With dried ferns foraged from my woodland and Canary grasses. The groom wore a paper flower buttonhole to match.

wedding ceremony

Courtney and James were ‘married’ under the rustic arch with willow hearts by celebrant Isla Macleod. Also accompanied by beautiful music from Lucy Harvey.

The reception

wedding table

The reception tables were stunning with ivy twining through tree branches, log candle holders and vintage bottles with more of my paper flowers.

The rustic crockery, cutlery and napkins were supplied by Havercroft Hire, to which Gayle added a small willow heart.

Beautifully painted menu cards and place names were designed by Ailsa Rose Designs. Complemented by Woodland Wax favours in small boxes. And to complete the tables, local wines was supplied by Smith & Evans.

wedding cake and rings

My dried fern and grasses were also used by Cake Design by Holly Miller on her delicious wedding cakes. The cakes were placed on log slices and Gayle’s log cake stand.

Keeping with the wood theme that ran throughout, the couples stunning wedding rings were also wooden, from Eco Wood Rings.

The photoshoot was a great success. Live Vibe’s styling was beautiful and at the end of the day there was no waste, just foliage to compost!

10 July 2021

Eco-friendly bouquet and buttonhole

This green and white bridal bouquet and matching buttonhole are beautiful and eco-friendly. Just right for a hot summer’s wedding, no wilting or pollen and will last well beyond your special day.

white paper rose and dried bamboo leaf bouquet

The bouquet includes tissue paper garden roses and white Alstroemerias, with dried Gypsophila and bamboo leaves. And the buttonhole is a single paper Alstroemeria with Gypsophila and bamboo leaves.

eco friendly buttonhole and bouquet

As always, I created them from 100% natural materials and they are fully compostable.
Beautiful, long lasting and kind to the planet 🙂
30 June 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

Midnight blue sloe berries to create dusky blues

Whilst I was pondering the future last autumn, I picked a small bag of sloe berries from the Blackthorn trees along my local hedges and then froze them. The beautiful midnight blue berries are an important winter food source for birds such as thrushes, blackbirds, redwings and fieldfares. So, as with all plant material I forage, I only take a few berries from each tree to produce my natural dye.

sloes berries for natural dye

The berries were gently heated to break down and release their colour. The cooked berries smelt delicious and produced a lovely rich burgundy colour. I strained the fruit through muslin and expecting a wonderful dark pink colour I tested it with a small piece of tissue paper. The paper turned pink but a bit blotchy, so I gave it a quick rinse. Much of the pink was just the fruit residue and washed away but the paper was still a pinky blue. However once the paper was dry, it had turned to a beautiful blue colour more reflective of the fresh sloe berry skins.

The dye produced shades of blue from a deep purple blue to a pale grey blue depending on how long the paper as in the dye.

26 May 2021