My cousin was shopping the other day and came across something she’d never before seen, so posted a photo of it.
I honestly had never heard that term and just laughed about it all morning. I mean, why not just call it what it is? Faux leather or fake leather, whatever! It just didn’t and still doesn’t make much sense to me.
But it did remind me that I had saved a video I had seen on Facebook and that it was time to revisit it.
We’ve all seen the pretty metal flowers that have become so popular. They sell them at home decor stores, craft stores, and even clothing stores. Like these:
And they run anywhere from $25 each to as high as about $70. So for three of them, it could cost you as much as $210!
The video I had saved a few months ago gave instructions on how to make your own, and after seeing my cousin’s “Vegan Leather” sign, I was reminded. These are far less money than the ones that are sold in stores, and that’s perfect for me because I only want them as part of my fall decor in my house.
Here’s what you’ll need:
Aluminum cookie sheets, acrylic paints, paint brushes, scissors, glue gun, hooks, foam board
The aluminum cookie sheets are two for a dollar at Dollar Tree, and for all three flowers I used 18 sheets ($18), Although I already had my paints, you can usually get them at just about any craft store for about 59-cents each (about $4 including brown, which isn’t pictured). The foam board is also from Dollar Tree, for $1. So, I made all three of my flowers for less than $25.
This is a relatively easy project, and to make it kid-friendly, you can use E6000 glue, rather than hot glue. In fact, I’m told that if you’re going to hang these outside in the sun, the hot glue will loosen, so you may want to use the E6000 in that case.
Let’s get started.
Using a scrap piece of paper, I drew a pattern for my petals and then cut that out. Then using an old pair of scissors, I cut out the edges of the aluminum cookie sheets (that just made it easier to hold and cut the petals). And, holding the pattern to the cookie sheet, I began cutting out the petals. I held two cookie sheets together at a time and I cut a total of 25 petals out for the first flower.
Then I began painting the flower petals. I used several paints to give dimension to my flowers, but you could leave them the natural aluminum or you could paint them using a pewter color. The paint has to dry before you can move on, so while they are drying you can cut out two pieces of foam board, one for the backing, and one for the center of the flower. I also painted the backs of the petals, but not with the detail that I painted the fronts with.
I actually had a scrap piece of cardboard that I used for the back. You really don’t need to worry about the shape of it, round, square, etc. — as long as you can glue the petals down in a circular shape.
I attached a string loop to the back of the cardboard backing using hot glue, and when the paint on the petals was dry, I began laying it all out.
Then using a scrap piece of the foam board, I cut out a circle that will be the center of the flower.
I placed it on top of one of the cookie sheets and cut around it, leaving about 1 1/2-inches to work with. After you’ve cut out the circle of aluminum, then you’ll cut into the aluminum every inch or so – up to the foam board.
Apply glue and fold down the aluminum into the glue that holds it in place. Do this all the way around the circle.
Now we come to one of those moments that I’m sure we all experienced when we were young: our mother saying, “Do as I say, not as I do.”
Well, I’m going to tell you this, at this point, before to glue the center down to the flower, you’ll want to paint the center. I attached the center of my flower before painting, and then painting became a bit more difficult than it needed to be. Live and learn.
Set the flower center aside to dry. You might need more than one coat of paint.
When all of the paint is dry, you can begin assembling your flower.
I used 10 petals on the back row, then 10 more on the middle row, and then five on the center row.
Place some glue on the back and lay it on the cardboard or foam that you are using as backing for the flower. If you’re using hot glue, remember it’s just that — VERY HOT. It will heat up the aluminum before you can blink and eye — so be very careful. Glue 10 petals in place, and you have your first row completed.
The second, or middle row of petals is also 10 petals, place in-between the petals of the first row. After those are in place, then you can glue down the front row of five petals.
As you can see, I painted my flower center brown, with a few small dots of yellow in the middle. Then I curled up the edges of the petals, just slightly, to give it some movement.
The total time it took me to complete each flower was bout 2-hours.
Here are the other two.
I love them!!! Inspired by the colors in a blanket I recently made, these flowers are the perfect colors for my fall decor this year — something a little different.
Now all I need is a sign that states, “Vegan Metal Flowers.”