- Round coffee filters
- Washable markers or food coloring
- Spray bottle
- Wax paper
- Droppers or small spoons
- Pipe cleaners (optional)
1Prepare some coffee filters.
Start out with some round coffee filters. Try to get the white ones—colors don’t spread as well on brown coffee filters.
If you’re using basket coffee filters, flatten them out.
2Fold the coffee filter.
Take one coffee filter. Fold it in half four times to come up with a small wedge.
3Cut an arc.
Draw an arc starting from one top corner going down towards the opposite side. Cut the wedge along the arc.
4Unfold the paper.
Carefully unfold the paper to reveal an 8-petalled flower.
5Make several more flowers.
Repeat the steps above to create more coffee filter flowers. Try varying the shape and steepness of the arc in Step 3 to come up with a variety of flower shapes.
6Color the flowers.
Color the flowers by using washable markers or food coloring.
a.) Washable markers – draw lines, shapes, and patterns on the coffee filter flowers using washable markers.
Place the flowers on a sheet of wax paper. Provide ample space between the flowers.
Spray the flowers with some water. Watch the colors spread and mix on the coffee filter. Let the flowers sit for a bit—it takes time for the colors to spread. If you want the colors to spread more, spray with a bit more water. Allow the flowers to dry completely on the wax paper.
b.) Food coloring (Method 1) – place the flowers on a sheet of wax paper. Moisten the flowers by spraying with some water.
Add 2-3 drops of food coloring to a tablespoon of water. The more food coloring you add, the more vibrantly-colored the flowers will be.
Use droppers or small spoons to add drops of the diluted food coloring on each flower. The colors will easily spread and mix on the moist coffee filter. Let the flowers dry on the wax paper.
c.) Food coloring (Method 2) – after doing Step 3, spray the folded coffee filter with water to moisten it.
Add 2-3 drops of food coloring to a tablespoon of water. Mix well.
Dip the tip of the folded coffee filter into the diluted food coloring for about 2 seconds. The color will run up the moist coffee filter.
Dip the same curved tip very quickly into a another color of diluted food coloring. You can also dip the opposite tip, if you like.
Carefully unfold the coffee filter. Place the flower flat on a sheet of wax paper to dry.
7Let the flowers dry.
The flowers will take a few hours to dry completely. Once dry, you can glue a paper circle, felt, or button at the center of each flower. Glue stems using craft sticks or drinking straws.
In this photo, you’ll see how the flowers look with each method of coloring.
- Top row – washable markers
- Middle row – food coloring (Method 1)
- Bottom row – food coloring (Method 2)
Make three-dimensional flowers.
After your colored coffee filter flower dries, you can do a few more steps to turn it from a flat two-dimensional flower to a three-dimensional one.
Pinch the center of the flower with one hand. Use your other hand to gather the petals towards the center as shown in the photo.
Wrap one end of a pipe cleaner tightly around the base of the flower. For a more rigid stem, you can wrap the rest of the pipe cleaner around a wooden dowel or an unsharpened pencil.
Open up the petals to complete your three-dimensional flower.
Layer two or more flowers.
Whether making two-dimensional or three-dimensional flowers, you can layer 2 or more flowers to create more petals. Position the flowers so that the first flower’s petals stick out from the spaces in between the second flower’s petals. Glue the flowers at the center.
Turn the layered flowers into a lush three-dimensional flower by doing the steps shown with the blue and red flower above.
Make a flower ring.
Make a fun and colorful bohemian ring with a small coffee filter flower. Add a stem as described above. Trim the pipe cleaner stem so that it can be wound around your finger into a ring.
Decorate hats and headbands.
Decorate hats or headbands with these vibrant flowers. Simply twist the pipe cleaner wherever you want to put them. Keep in mind though that the colors will run if the flowers get wet so wear them on a sunny day.