How to Make 3D Flowers from Paper and Cardstock using your Cricut

Crafting with paper and card is one of the many amazing things your digital cutting machine can help you with! You'll no longer need to work out how to use a pair of scissors to carefully cut around awkward and intricate shapes or have to brave using a craft knife and hope you can keep a steady hand. The Cricut can do all this and more in just a matter of minutes! If you're lucky enough to have other tools such as the scoring tip or marker pens your Cricut machine can also write and score the paper and card for you too!

If you're just getting started with paper and card crafts on your machine it would be worth checking out this previous blog post first: An Introduction to Cricut Crafting with Paper and Cardstock. It will talk you through the different options and how to get the most out of your crafting!

For this blog post we are going to focus on making 3D flowers from cardstock using a spiral design. You can also use paper for this craft if you wish.

What you will need:

Cricut or other digital cutting machine.

Flower Design. I used the free patterns available within the Cricut Design Space. You can find them by searching 'Flower Shoppe' within Images and then Cartridges, as shown below. There are 10 designs to choose from in total. The image further down this post show what each of the designs looks like once rolled into their flower shape.

Note: For cutting machines other than the Cricut brand you'll need to source or make alternative SVG cut files. There are plenty of designs out there on site's like Etsy though so don't worry if you own a different machine, or if none of the options below take your fancy! The principals discussed here will still be the same.

Flower designs

Quilling tool. I used these ones which I purchased from Amazon. There are lots to choose from but I found these seemed the best quality for the lowest price. You just need a tool which has a little slit to hold the paper as you twirl it around.

Glue Gun. I have had my mini glue gun for years but you can get them for about £5 from most craft shops and lots of other retailers. If your gun doesn't come with glue sticks make sure you purchase a size which is suitable. The smaller guns won't be able to take the wider glue sticks that are available for bigger models.

Paper or Card. I used 180 gsm grey card for the flowers I created below. It was a pack of 50 which I purchased from Hobbycraft. From each A4 sheet I managed to get one large (20 x 18.5 cm) and two smaller spirals (8.7 x 8 cm). These sizes created flowers which were 5-6.5 cm and 2 cm in diameter.

Cutting Mat. The Cricut blue light grip mat is the best option for paper and the green standard grip mat is ideal for cardstock. Depending on how old your green mat is you may be able to get away with it for paper but there's always a risk it could rip when you try to remove it if it's too grippy.

Step One - Choose your Design.

The first step is to choose your material, both paper and card will work well for this craft. If you're working with card I'd aim for one which is fairly light, this will ensure it's quite easy to work with and roll. Paper flowers will obviously be more delicate but they will also be easier to shape if you wanted to roll the petals open slightly at the end.

Next you need to choose your flower design. Below are the cut spirals from Design Space and what they look like made up to help you decide.

Choose your design

Once you've decided, you'll then need to size your design. I used a single sheet of A4 card and cut a large (20 x 18.5 cm) and two smaller flowers (8.7 x 8 cm).  These produced flowers which were 5-6.5 cm and 2 cm in diameter.

Note: The larger flower size is a range as it was dependent on how tightly I wrapped the layers. I chose to leave some of my finished flowers slightly looser than others.

Step Two - Cut your design

For 180 gsm cardstock, I set the dial on my Cricut to 'Light Cardstock'. For thicker card you might find the 'Light Cardstock +' or 'Cardstock' options work better. You want to make sure you get a clean cut so that the shapes are easy to remove once they're cut. For paper use the 'Paper' or 'Paper +' settings.

If you're cutting several different designs then colouring the ones you want on each page will help your machine to group them correctly. I set a different colour for each group of 3 (large and 2 small spirals).

Cut your design

For an A4 sheet of paper or card at the specifications above you'll need to position your card about 0.5 cm away from either edge, as shown below. Use the preview option on the cut screen (above) to make sure you have your card lined up correctly.

Position the card

Step Three - Roll your flowers

Once you've cut your shapes and removed them from the mat, take your quilling tool and thread the outer end of the card (the furthest part from the centre) through the central slit in the tool.

Quilling tool

You can then begin to roll the card around the tool. I found it was easiest to hold the card relatively tight and straight in one hand and turn the tool with my fingers in the other hand. Try to keep the base part of the card relatively straight as it loops around the tool, this will help your flower settle nicely at the end.

Roll your flowers
Roll your flowers progress

Step Four - Assembling and finishing off your flowers.

When you’ve finished rolling your flower, release the card and let it unravel. Gently remove the card from the quilling tool by softly pulling the whole piece upwards, away from the tool. Then place it down on a table or other surface to settle.

To secure it in place, add a generous blob of glue on the circle at the bottom of the flower. While the glue is warm, rearrange the petals until you are happy with their position and then press firmly and secure everything into place.

Assembling your flowers

Remember that in nature flowers aren’t perfect so if your petals aren’t symmetric and evenly spaced don’t panic! They’ll be more authentic and true to nature if they aren't! Here are a couple of my finished flowers:

Finished flowers

I used my flowers to line the base of my IKEA greenhouse which I'm going to use as a wedding post box - keep your eyes peeled for that upcoming post on how I did it! Here are a few sneak peak photos in advance though:

Wedding post box

Happy twirling!

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