Tuesday, June 7, 2011

DIY Painted Hair Flower

This is the teaser :)
Pixar held it's wrap party for Cars 2 on Saturday, which was really, really fun! We got to see the film in its completed state for the first time (it comes to theaters June 24th so go see it!) and I got to see my very first feature film credit! The party afterwards had tons of amazing food, drinks and dancing. My feet hurt pretty badly by the end of the night from gettin' funky on the dance floor...worth it! I really regret not eating more of that food though....

So I originally had this idea to wear a hair flower to the party since I love them so much (and when I wear flowers in my hair, people tell me it looks very "me", which I assume is a good thing).  Unfortunately when I had finished the flower and tried it on with the outfit and jewelry, it totally did NOT work. It just looked too organic when the rest of my outfit was super clean and modern. Having spent the better part of three evenings working on the flower, I was super sad. But being able to give yourself honest criticism is important (difficult, but important), and I knew I couldn't wear it. *tears* That doesn't mean I didn't document it for my blog though! And who knows, maybe at another party with another outfit it could make its debut. Okay, so on to the crafting.

Boyfriend and I had decided on a lavender theme for our outfits when we found that he looked quite smashing in this shirt from Express. Unfortunately I couldn't quite find a high-quality, clean-looking lavender flower to match so I decided to paint one. I added some bling to the middle as well to make it more formal-looking. Here's how it went down:

Fake flower
Fabric paint + brush
Thread and needle
Hot glue
Flat-head pins

I bought an off-white magnolia flower since it had the cleanest lines and wasn't the size of my head. I took it apart by popping it off the stem and taking out the middle pieces that held it together. I took out two petal pieces so it wouldn't be as voluminous and used those for testing.

I put some paint on a paper place and used a wet brush to water it down as needed. Before painting, I completely wet the petals and dabbed the excess with a paper towel. This allows the paint to bleed more smoothly to get those nice gradients. Then I applied my paint, starting with opaque in the center and using more watered down paint as I moved outward.

NOTE: Do not paint on an absorbent surface such as a paper towel. Where the petal makes contact with this surface will dry the paint faster leaving you with uneven spots. I tied my petals to a wire and painted them in the air after making the paper towel mistake. If you're impatient like me, you can use a hair-dryer to dry the paint.

Notice the spots? Those were the little raised dots on the paper towel that made contact with the petals. I tried to bleach the paint out, but it took 3 full days of soaking to get it all out, and by then the cloth had practically dissolved.

ANYWAY, when you're done they should look kinda like this:

My flower had these plastic pieces in between the petals to give them more volume and prevent them from going flat. I decided to use a couple and sewed them into place to keep them from slipping out and being seen.

Now for the beads: I added the large center bead by sewing it into place. Around the base of this bead I put a small amount of hot glue and let it dry. I secured each small bead on a pin by pushing the pin into the hot glue and through the base of the flower.

I bent each pin and trimmed it (it's important to use jewelry pins as they are flexible enough for this).

Here, the first set of pearl beads are in place. I continued to add more crystal beads for some sparkle.

Once all the beads were in place, I arranged my petals exactly how I wanted them, then used a generous amount of hot glue to layer them together. Then I flipped the flower over and secured a hair clip using thread and some hot glue (to keep it from slipping around)

Boyfriend wanted me to point out that he was diligently
washing the dishes while I took this photo

Here's the final product being modelled in some pretty unremarkable hair (mine, I was lazy that day).

In other news, here's the cost breakdown:

Flower: $4
Beads: $2 + 5
Pins: $4
Fabric Paint: $2
Hot glue, sewing supplies, hair clip: already had.
Total: $17

Not bad considering a lot of these things go for $30-60 on Etsy. It turned out really nicely and I was totally sad it didn't go with my outfit (read: really, incredibly heartbroken). I guess now I'll have to specifically hunt for a lavender dress to match it for next year's party.