Bloom School: Mother's Day Flowers
On Mother's Day, Americans spend BILLIONS--with a "B"--of dollars on flowers each year. The Kitchen has come up with 3 beautiful DIY flower techniques that are perfectly pleasing for every mom and will cost you less than pricey bouquets.
Flowers for a New Mom: Pressed Flower Frame
Gifts are most meaningful when you add a personal touch--especially when that touch comes from mom's young kids. To give flowers in a more personal way, try a beautiful pressed flower craft. It's a great project for dads and includes a special touch that moms will cherish. Pressed flowers usually take weeks or even months to dry inside books, but we've got a quick and easy way to get the same beautiful results using the microwave!
Making this is easy to do. We used pansies because they are colorful, inexpensive and easy to find, but any flower could be used. Just note that the drying time may vary.
To dry: Cut the blossom and stem pieces from the plant. Next, fold a standard 8 1/2-by-11-inch piece of paper in half and arrange the flowers and leaves (in a single layer) inside the paper. Close the fold and gently press. Place a doubled paper towel on a microwave-safe plate and the flower-filled paper on top. Top that with another doubled paper towel and place a microwave-safe pie plate (or other heavy glass plate) on the stack; using both paper and paper towel wicks away the moisture quickly for fast drying. Microwave on 50 percent power for 90 seconds. You will need to do this about 3 times, carefully lifting the paper to check for dryness between each cycle. If your flowers are not dry after 3 rounds, keep going in 90-second bursts until they are.
Once your flowers are dry, you're almost ready to arrange them in your favorite frame. Pre-cut a piece of plain paper so that it fits inside the frame. Before you glue the flowers to the paper, have the little ones write a personal message for mom at the bottom of the paper. Now you can use your fingers or tweezers to carefully remove the flowers and leaves from the microwave paper and arrange them on the paper for the frame. Use a hot glue gun (set to the lowest temperature setting) to secure. Finally, layer with the glass and insert into the frame. That's all it takes!
Flowers for Grandma: Wrist Corsage
A wrist corsage is perfect for moms and "glam-mas" who love to show off their flowers. It's an elegant piece to wear to church or out to Sunday brunch. You don't have to pre-order a special corsage because this one is simple to make.
Start with 1 peony flower, 2 freesia flowers and 1 to 2 freesia buds. Arrange them together as you like and wrap the stems with floral tape (available at your local craft store, box store or even online). Trim the stems short. Cut a 48-inch-long piece of ribbon and cut a 1/2-inch slit in the center lengthwise. Stick the taped stems of the flowers through the slit and trim the end. Wrap more floral tape around the stems to create a stopper, taping over the ribbon a little to secure. Now it's ready to wear! You can now help mom put it on by double wrapping the ribbon around her wrist. Be sure to tie the ribbon over the stem before securing it with a beautiful bow.
Flowers for Every Mom: DIY Mini Bouquet
You can transform an everyday store-bought bouquet into several delightful mini bouquets. These are great for mom to display throughout the house. Or, if you have multiple moms, grandmas, aunts and sisters in your life, you can give one to each of them. They also make great favors for Mother's Day brunch.
Here's how to make them. Start things off by cutting out even squares of butcher paper and colored tissue paper, placing each square of tissue paper on top of a square of butcher paper. Fold one corner of each piece of tissue paper slightly in to expose the butcher paper. Stick a small piece of double-sided tape to the exposed portion of each piece of butcher paper, taking care not to let the exposed side of the tape touch anything. Now it's time for the flowers.
All you need is a nice, full, store-bought bouquet--open it up and separate the flowers by type. Ours consisted of roses, wax flowers, baby's breath and tea roses, but any bunch will do. Trim the stems by at least half, making sure they fit into the paper squares you've created. Now you're ready to wrap.
Place some flowers on the diagonal and roll into a cone shape. Close the cone with the double-sided tape and tie a bow with raffia wire (available at craft stores or online) or string for the finishing touch. Repeat this process with the remaining buds. Don't forget to insert a mini envelope with a special note of appreciation inside each bouquet.
There you have it! Three flower creations every mom will love.