The Next Big, Colorful Trend in Paper FlowersNov 12, 2020
Do you know what the next big thing in paper flowers is? We won’t keep you waiting. We’ve noticed a trend in our industry: an explosion of color. Paper florists are getting bolder and more unique with every bloom they create by using more colors. You won’t want to miss out on how you can make your paper flowers more distinctive with this fun trend.
Now more than ever, there are many, many ways to alter the color of your crepe paper. You can go big and bold and send the color in a completely different direction with multiple layers of Design Master. Or you keep things more subtle with sheer watercolors or touches of PanPastel. And you can combine more than one option. The options really are limitless, which makes this trend so exciting!
So what are some of our favorite ways to shift colors and add color details? Let’s explore!
And we have exciting news! Quynh is collaborating with expert watercolorist Sarah Simon of The Mint Gardener (follow her on Instagram @themintgardener). We’re working together to find ways to paint crepe paper and turn it into a beautiful rose color.
For a more matte finish, consider using gouache. This medium originated from painters adding white to watercolors for a more opaque look, landing somewhere between acrylics and watercolors. You’ll get bolder colors than watercolors. You can use gouache with other water based paints. Mixing with acrylic will make gouache waterproof, which is a big bonus!
When you first start using gouache, practice on a scrap piece of crepe. You might need to experiment with how much water you add to the paint. You’ll also want to make sure that you let layers dry completely before adding anything on top.
You can add more opaque color with acrylics. Not all acrylics are the same, though.
Pay attention to the body of the paint: a soft body will spread more easily, while a hard body is thicker and will show brushstrokes. If you are trying to achieve those bold colors, make sure to check your paint label for lightfastness information. If it has a rating of AA or A, it has good color-fastness. A rating of B means it’s average, and a C rating should be avoided unless your creation doesn’t need to last very long.
Acrylics will dry quickly, which is usually a desirable quality for paper florists but do keep your tubes and jars covered so your paint doesn’t dry out while you’re working on something else.
For colorful blooms, pastels are a top choice for striking details. They are almost purely pigment, which means they produce bold colors that are perfect for this trend. You won’t have to worry about color fading with pastels, either.
Pastels come in five types:
- Soft pastels are the most common, and come in a somewhat powdery stick and in a very wide range of colors. They blend and layer quite well.
- PanPastels are soft pastels that come in a container and are applied with a tool. Besides making less mess on your finger, PanPastels have even more concentrated pigment and thus very vibrant colors.
- Oil pastels are bound with oil instead of gum like soft pastels, and they have a more waxy consistency. They can’t be blended with other types of pastels, and even with other oil pastels, they don’t blend as easily.
- Hard pastels contain less pigment, meaning they are less vibrant but less messy. They can be blended with soft pastels and can create finer details.
- Pencil pastels are somewhat harder than soft pastels, and softer than hard pastels. They can blend with either and make detailed work easier and less messy.
If you haven’t used pastels before, you might be a little nervous to try them. They have a reputation for being messy, but I’ve found that they clean up fairly easily. And that smearing quality is what makes them work so well for blending colors on crepe paper.
Some major brands that are easy to find and buy are Faber-Castell, Prismacolor, PanPastels, Sennelier, and Blick’s.
Design Master is a color spray that comes in varying types and colors. It can add a smooth, light finish to your crepe. An application can even strengthen your paper flower. We’ve written about color shifting crepe paper with Design Master, and you can get more information about Design Master by listening to this Paper Talk episode.
Because you can layer multiple colors of spray, you can achieve completely unique colors. Design Master makes it easy to add color in a snap at basically any stage of your paper flower making. When you spray, keep things light. You can always add more later.
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