Thursday, February 12, 2015

Coffee Filter Flowers

My grandpa's 85th birthday is just around the corner!  I am so excited to be reunited with my family as we celebrate such an incredible man.  We are working hard planning a party with an invite list that has well over 100 people on it.  Yikes.  How do you host that many people on a tight budget without making it look like you were digging through your couch looking for pennies?  It is possible my friends!

When I was talking to my husband about flowers for the party he said, "he's an 85 year old man.  Why do you need flowers for a man's birthday party?"  I just gave him a blank stare.  Flowers are a must in my opinion.  Besides, this is just as much for my grandma as it is for my grandpa.  Anyway, would you believe me if I told you I was able to purchase 12 bouquets of flowers AND 3 table arrangements (for food and entry table) for less than $20?  Well it's true.  And these bouquets are beautiful and you'd never know I used coffee filters and markers to make them. 

Coffee filter flowers are not brand new information.  I've made a few decorative pieces in my house using them.  But I haven't done them in this capacity, or volume.  So if you need something to do, please come and help my sister and I make 150 flowers!  We are going to be assembling them here and shipping them to Illinois for my cousin to put together into bouquets and wrap in the prettiest gold ribbon you've ever seen.  Besides, it was her idea to make coffee filter flowers!

Let's get down to business.  Here is what you need to do:


coffee filters (5 per flower)
floral stakes (3 or 6 inch depending on what you're making-details on that below)
3 different washable markers
floral tape
glue gun
spray bottle

optional: Styrofoam, ribbon, vase

Note: If you're sticking flowers in Styrofoam, I would suggest buying 3 inch stakes.  If you're making bouquets, I'd use 6 inch stakes like I have below.

1.  Divide your coffee filters into stacks of 5 and staple the inside together with 4 staples top bottom, left and right making a square.  See below:

2.  Gather each filter up around the staples, one layer at a time.  When you're done it will look like it does below.

3.  Take the floral stake and wrap the wire around the stake, tucking it out of the way.

4.  Now insert the stake into the middle of your filters.  Hot glue the stake in place on the inside of the filters.  Press the filters up around the glue to secure in place.

5.  Now comes the hand cramping part.  :)  Thoroughly wrap the flower and stake with floral tape.  Wrap the tape very tightly, continuing to press the tape in place as you wrap around the stake.  When you think you've added enough tape, go around a few more times.  The idea is to securely connect the filters with the stake. 

I always start on the filters and make sure I have a little tail hanging off.  Then wrap down, then back up, then back down again. 

PS...don't mind the ink stained thumb.

6.  Once the flower is complete, gather the filters as tightly as you can and color the tips with your markers.  Here, I've used 3 different colors.  I would most certainly use more than one to create a more realistic look.


I look like I have elephant hands.  But I don't.  Really.

7.  Now for the fun part, take a squirt bottle and make sure it is set to "mist" and not "stream".  Spray the tips 2-3 times with water.  The colors will begin to run and blend together.  The flowers will wrinkle as they dry making the filters appear more like a pedal than a filter.  Lay the flowers on a paper towel to dry.

8.  Once flowers have dried, they can be arranged however you please.  I started sticking them in Styrofoam but found that the stakes were way to large so I had to cut them down.  However, the 6 inch stakes made a beautiful bouquet.  I used 7 flowers to make a bouquet and 17 flowers to make the table arrangement.

I was really excited at the prospect of make this table arrangement with the Styrofoam, however, the stakes were too large and kept running into each other.  Not to mention it would take nearly 30 flowers to make one arrangement.  I cut them down to 3 inch stakes and found I only need 17.

How cute are these?  I used the same method as I did in my DIY Wood Transfer Sign and made these cute drink, food and table labels for the party. 

I am in love with this table arrangement! I hope you are too!