Realistic looking silk roses

The rose is often called queen of all flowers. And indeed who can resist its variety of form and colour, the velvety petals and sweet scent?
I love roses, both real and made of silk. In our garden we have 5 potted rose bushes and 3 old  climbing plants. David Austin varieties are probably the best for spectacular blooms and they are  often  scented. Just flicking through the pages of his catalogue provides endless inspiration for a silk flower designer!
Last week I finished two pieces with English roses, a hair clip and a corsage. They are both multi petaled flowers but look rather different, one being open with stamens and the other being packed with small frilly petals.
This English rose hair clip can add a romantic touch to your summer look or your bridal image. 

Made of pure silk of several kinds, hand shaped and hand painted the rose hair clip is a unique accessory which can be customised in colour and size to match your outfit or your wedding theme. It can make an equaly nice brooch, or a hair comb, be mounted on a headband, sewn onto a dress or your favourite summer hat. Being hand crafted the rose hair clip is an exclusive one of a kind accessory.
The other English rose looks equally spectacular with its swirl of petals in the middle and a circle of outer petals.

Again made of natural fabrics and painted by hand the rose is customisable and can make a versatile accessory. Here I have it in rich mauve and burgundy colours set against shiny leaves and finished with a brooch base. It makes a great and unique gift too for any rose lover.
As with all my creations the English rose brooch is shipped in a gift box ready to be presented. In addition I can offer a complimentary gift wrapping service on any gift order and post it on your behalf to your addressee.
I would love to read your comments about my roses and ideas you have on where else they can be used either as accessories or decorations.

Silk magic

I thought that some of you would be interested in taking a peek at how silk flowers are created. That is why I tried to take pictures at all major steps of the process. It so happened that lotus flower became the guinea pig for the shooting. Lotus flower is quite a rare flower especially in Western culture but it is a sacred flower in India, respected in Japan and China. And it is not an easy flower to make from silk!  Well, you can see for yourselves:
1. We outline all the details (petals, leaves, calyx lobes etc) on a piece of stiffened silk fabric (in this case I am using satin). It is very important to place all the elements at 45′ angle.

2. We colour the petals (as in hte picture) and leaves using silk colours and ordinary paper.

3. Once all the elements are coloured we leave them to dry on a dry sheet of  paper. After they have dried they might need some ironing to make them flat and straight as elements cut out of satin especially tend to roll as they are drying. Just remember to switch off the steam on your iron as it will ruin the stiffeness of the fabric and you will have to start again.

4. Here are all our petals and calyx lobes nicely cut out + 132 handmade pairs of little stamens all ready for the next stage.

5. We glue pieces of thin wire wrapped in crepe paper to each petal and to the calyx lobes

6. Then we glue the petals along the cut in the middle so they have a boat-like shape (in the picture they are desperately trying to roll though)

7. We apply a thin layer of PVA glue onto our leaf to then glue it to a piece of hand painted pongee (a very fine type of silk fabric)

8. Here is all our green elements doubled with pongee

9. And now the greenery has been dried, cut out and waiting to be shaped

10. But firstly we shape all our petals using 3 different tips

11. In this picture I am using a big boule

12. Then we move on to the leaf and shape the central veins

13. After that we draw smaller veins that will make the leaf look a bit more like a real one

14. Now this is a difficult step when we need to make a cone out of cotton wool and then cover it with our silk elements. This will form our seed box

15. Here is our flower with 4 petals attached to the seed box and stamens

16. That’s how the flower looks with 12 petals on

17. The flower has all the 16 petals and calyx lobes attached

18. After that we need to cover our stalk with pongee

19. Then we wrap the stalk in a piece of hand painted satin silk

20. Et voila! Our flower

… and the leaf are ready! ☺

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