Complete Directions for Making Beautiful Easter Flowers at Home out of Waxed Paper

This is the second article in March of the School for Housewives 1902 series published on Mar 23, 1902, and is a fun article on how to make tissue and waxed paper flowers.

School for Housewives – Complete Directions for Making Beautiful Easter Flowers at Home out of Waxed Paper

Tissue and crepe paper flowers can be made more handsome and durable by waxing them. The process is quite an easy one, very inexpensive, considering the result obtained.

When intending to wax flowers take care to arrange them on a stout wire stem, strongly attached to the flower, as the wax will make the flower heavy, and if the stem is weak the flower is likely to droop or even break at the base.

The paper is not waxed before the flower is made. First finish the flower and tint it as desired. The wax (refined paraffine, retailing at fifteen cents a pound at the drug store) is put in a small, rather deep agato saucepan and melted. Leave the saucepan on the back of the stove, where it will keep melted and yet not boil or get too hot. Add nothing to the wax.

When the wax is ready dip your blossoms quickly into it, one at a time, and when the surplus wax has run back into the pan lay the soft waxed flower on a sheet of blotting paper and proceed in the same way with another flower. While the wax is soft there may be sprinkled, if desired, dip each blossom or leaf a little “diamond dust.” This is procurable at the druggist’s at ten cents an ounce. It gives to the flower a dewy or frosted appearance. The flowers, however, look well without it.

In making lilies or other flowers with large blossoms that must be grouped again on a single stem to imitate nature, do not finish the stem or plant before waxing.

Make all the buds, blossoms and leaves necessary, wax them one by one and group them as desired. Then cover the stems with tissue paper and wax the main stem by pouring wax on it from a spoon.

As Easter is fast coming and many will not be able to purchase hothouse lilies, the following directions for making the different varieties of lilies will be valuable. And if well made, they look quite natural.

The Easter lily has for center one pistil and five or six stamens. The pistil is made by covering a wire with green tissue paper, forming a little mail at the upper end; the stamens are made by covering a piece of wire, about five inches long, with deep orange-yellow tissue paper, having the paper wrapped in such a manner at the upper end as to be flat and one sixth of an inch in width, for about one inch in length.

This wider part is bent over. The pistil and stamens in the tiger lily are done in the same way. In the illustration, both the tiger lily and Easter lily show the arrangement.

For the petals, cut six pieces of white crepe paper, same shape as Fig. S, about ten inches in length, and two inches wide as the widest part. Cut six pieces of white covered wire (green can be used if white is not to be had) about fourteen inches long, and paste one length wise through the centre, from point b to a of each petal. Arrange the six petals around the centre, with the wired side out and about one-third of the petal (end a) bent outward gracefully. Tie all together at base b and make calyx of green tissue to cover ends of wires, and add the leaves, which are out about the same shape as the petals, and of varied length.

If an entire stalk of the Easter lily plant is desired, first made a few buds of various sizes, then three or four blossoms, then the leaves disposed along the length of the stalk, smaller leaves nearer to the blossoms, getting gradually larger when nearing the base. More leaves are arranged at the base, that it may look like the growing plant. Then leave a few inches of the stalk without any leaves at all. This is to play that role of root and be painted in the sand of a flower pot or jardinière.

These directions apply to the making of “tiger-lilies.” The exceptions are these: The stamens in the tiger lilies are covered with a light shade of yellow, while the petals are made of orange-color crepe paper. Some blossoms have the petals only slightly curved, as in the Easter lily, while some others (those supposed to be withering) have the petals rolled as shown in the illustration. The orange-color petals can be left plain or tinted.

Make the spots on the ordinary tiger lily with ink, taking a burnt match to apply the ink. If other varieties of lily are desired, such as the “Japanese,” etc., make the markings to imitate nature, using ink or water-colors.

A small quantity of diamond dye of the correct color, diluted in water, is useful in tinting flowers, and can be made as deep or as light in color as desired.

Even if the petals of the tiger lily are not rolled as shown in the illustration they must be bent outward in a more decided manner than the petals of the Easter lily. In the last named the petals are first brought upward in a cup-like fashion before being bent outward. In nature the tiger lily does not form a deep cup, as does the Easter lily, so the petals must, of course, be bent accordingly.

When quick work is more to be desired than a close imitation of nature, the Easter lily may be made in the simple way illustrated by the blossom in the upper right hand corner. To make it, cut a piece of crepe paper four inches wide, and six inches long, the lengthwise edges together, and make six rounded scallops at one end for the upper edge of the flower; with the finger spread the wrinkles in each of the six scallops, at the same time curving and bending them outward as shown. The centre is formed of a pistil and five stamens, as in the regular Easter lily. The lower edge is gathered around that centre and the rest of the work is done in the same way as the Easter and tiger lilies. At a distance it looks quite natural and effective.


This flower is, of all lilies, the easiest to make, and whether “dwarf” or “giant” calla is desired, the directions fur cutting are the same. Four or five stalks of calla lilies, planted in a jardinière, look very pretty and natural.

The diagram A D E F B C shows how the white crepe must be cut. The edges are made alike, so that the pattern can be folded over and the line C E laid on a double fold of the crepe paper. The lines A and B from a to d, and d to b, are glued together. A long bud (for centre) is made of yellow crepe, taking a piece five or six inches long and two inches wide, shaping it as shown in the illustration.

Twist the upper end tightly and gather at the base, fastening with a wire. Insert this bud inside the pasted white petal and fasten together as the base G, leaving the ends of the wire for a stem.

Now stretch the edges D E F, flattening and drawing them backward gracefully, and the blossom is complete.

Cut green leaves like Fig. P and arrange them naturally along the stem.


It is incorrect to call this flower the “fleur de lis.” The French name “fleur de lis” belongs by right to the Easter lily, which is France’s national flower. The iris, then, to call it by its right name, is one of the most difficult of all flowers to make. It is, however, so beautiful that the effort will be amply compensated by the result.

The iris is made from white crepe paper, of a heliotrope tint, and is composed of six petals, in two sets of three each. As the crepe is cut on the bias, the petals must be made in half sections, six each (Fig. A and B) so that when joined by gluing around a six inch long petal wire, the grains of crepe will take a V course from base of petal outward. This necessitates replacing the pattern on the paper each time three half-petals are cut.

When joining half-petals hold the piece of crepe, with glued wire between, on the straight edges. Fig. B shows half of the lower petal, and Fig. A half of the upper petal. On the lower petal glue some yellow cotton, as indicated in the illustration.

In putting the flower together, two upper petals should be made to curve upward in the fashion of the tulip, with one curved and bent down close to the stalk. The three lower petals are bent outward, as shown, and the edges of each of the six petals must be pulled or stretched, to gibe a natural ruffled effect. When this has been done tint the flowers; the upper petals must be tinted only slightly, while the lower petals an be tinted from light to very dark. The green leaves are cut from green crepe paper, long, and narrow, and wired on the back at the centre.

Marion Harland

The Care of Children
The Housekeeper’s Exchange
A Pretty Embroidered Net
Recipes for Two Tempting Dishes

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