by SUSAN BOYOUNG BAILEY SCHABACKER
Celebrate summer with decoratable and wearable art for kids and kids at heart with colorful pipe cleaner DIY crafts. Draw inspiration from gardens with beautiful blooms and butterflies, handcrafted with pipe cleaners.
Use a full-length pipe cleaner for larger roses and longer stems. For mini roses, cut a pipe cleaner for the bloom and stem in half. Put both halves for the bloom and stem together, and wrap the end of the stem part around one end of the bloom part. Wrap the bloom part around in a spiral. Tuck the other end of the bloom part around on the outside of the petal, so the sharp end is obscured underneath on the inside.
For the stem, cut to desired length and fold the sharp end over. Another option for the end of the stem is to create a small base, rolling into a spiral and then shaping the stem upward. Pipe cleaner roses generally stand up better if stems aren’t too long. If desired, use a glue gun to glue the roses to paper or cardboard.
For leaves, fold half a pipe cleaner in half around the stem where you want the leaves to be, twist once and pull ends, so they are equidistant and horizontal. Fold the ends over to cause the leaf shape to be more pointy. Wrap the end around the base of the leaf, and press the sharp end down.
“Yellow Roses” – Dolly Parton (lyrics snippet)
Yellow roses, the color of sunshine
You loved me at one time,
why did you have to go
Yellow roses, are you sending your new love
My bright yellow rose buds I still love you so.
For four (or more) petals, fold pipe cleaner in half twice, and cut into four pieces. For a long stem, place a pipe cleaner in the center of the petals. Create the petals by holding each of the four pieces in half, with and bunch together evenly with the ends facing up.
For the stamen (center), wrap the end of the stem of a full length pipe cleaner around the upper part of the petals and fold the end over top, and mask down to conceal the sharp end.
Without a stem, your daisy can be wearable as well as decoratable. Thread another pipe cleaner through two of the petals horizontally.
To obscure the sharp ends, fold back or twist the ends around a few times. You can add a bead to the ends and wrap around once or twice to secure.
“Blue Sky Through My Branches” – Susan BoYoung Bailey Schabacker (lyrics snippet)
You are my daisy in the meadow
Turning my face towards the sun
You are the blue sky through my branches
Reminding me another day has begun.
For larger butterflies, use a full pipe cleaner. For mini butterflies, cut two pipe cleaners in half for the top and bottom sets of wings. Take one half of the pipe cleaner and fold the two ends in, as evenly as possible, like a pretzel. Fold both ends together under once. Do the same for the other set of wings.
For antennas, cut a pipe cleaner in half. Place the two wings together (top and bottom), and fold the third half of the pipe cleaner over in the middle. Twist the two ends (facing up) together. Roll each of the ends in a small spiral facing in, in a heart shape.
Take a fourth pipe cleaner and wrap it around the middle. Twist around and pull the ends in the opposite directions, horizontally. Roll the sharp edges of the ends in or add a bead and twist ends over.
“Butterfly” – Mariah Carey (lyrics snippet)
Spread your wings and prepare to fly
For you have become a butterfly
Oh, fly abandonedly into the sun
If you should return to me
We truly were meant to be
So spread your wings and fly
Whether a bouquet of long-stemmed flowers wrapped in tissue paper, tied with a ribbon or put in a vase (no water needed) or wearable art that makes for great gift giving – pipe cleaner flowers are easy to make and recreate.