A little break from the usual art, to post a little guide on how to make paper peonies, or napkin pompoms. We have some lovely peonies in our yard, and rather than picking them - we decided to make our own paper versions to have inside hanging in the windows. In mentioning that we were gonna make them, I got asked how we do it, so I thought we might as post the process. I got my trusty assistant with me, and we'll try to do this step by step.
For these, you need three napkins, a little piece of string or thread, and the only tools you need are scissors.
It doesn't really matter if the napkins are two or three layers, it just means there's a difference in density and fluff.
1. Open the napkins and cut through the middle, one way. If your kids can use scissors, they can do this - it doesn't matter if they cut a bit off the middle or it gets a bit frayed.
2. Put the napkins you've cut in two in a stack, you should have six pieces from three napkins.
3. Fold the napkin stack like you would to make a fan.
4. Find a piece of string or thread to tie around the middle. One end has to be a bit long, as that's what you'll hang it from.
5. Round off the ends by cutting a bit off the corners. Sometimes it's nice not to round them, but if making them look like pompom flowers, this helps.
6. Open the sides a bit, then start to slowly tease the layers of napkins out of their fan shape with your fingers. This step might be a bit tricky for some kids. The layers will be very thin and fine, but if they're torn a bit, it doesn't matter. It'll hide within the "ball" in the end, and if there's any pieces hanging down it or anything, just cut them off. You're supposed to get all the layers apart, meaning 12 if it's a two layer napkin, 18 if it's a three layer napkin.
Here is my trusty assistant holding one of the half made paper peonies.
7. Tease out the layers on the other side of the peony/pompom - and you're done!
Almost so you can't tell from the real deal! (The real deal here being the dark pink ones... )