Stars & Stripes Flower Bombs!

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Stars & Stripes Flower Bombs

When I think of the 4th of July, of course, I think of fireworks at the park from when I was a kid. I also think of the National Anthem. Singing super loudly, “the bombs bursting in air!!” But it’s hard to think about the good ol’ days when so many people are experiencing troubling times today. I think more than ever we are asking ourselves what it means to be an American.

With this project I tried to avoid thoughts about the current negative climate. Instead, I thought about peace, love and freedom. And that is when I came up with the idea of  flower bombs bursting in air! I thought it would look cool to gather flowers and sparkles together into little balls that looked like a fictional bomb. It’s a decoration that could be turned into a garland, chair accent, or table centerpiece. They were fun to make, perfect for a project with kids or craft group!

 

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Supplies

-Round foam/styrofoam balls- Toy athetic foam balls from Dollar Tree

-Flag themes paper napkins/tissue paper

-Artificial flowers

-Red, white & blue star wired garland

-Flag themed bows

-Yarn

-Curled gift wrap ribbon/scissor curled ribbon

-Hot glue gun/hot glue sticks

-Scissors

-Wire cutter/jewelry scissors

-Strait pin/needle

-Knitting needle/chop stick/long narrow stick with pointy end

-Scotch tape

-Twist ties (optional)

Instructions

I started by rounding up every flag printed craft matierials I had. My mom knows I love to make things, so after my brothers farewell party into the Airforce she graciously handed over every leftover patriotic decoration to me. So I already had a LOT of stuff. I would highly suggest doing the same thing, or visit a discount store and look for red, white & blue napkins, bows and flowers.

For the round base, I bought toy foam balls from the Dollar Tree. Styrofoam works just as well and can be found at any craft or garden store. There are two ways to display the flower bombs, by hanging or just sitting. I will go over how to run yarn or string through the balls for hanging instructions later.

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The bows I had were easy to disasemble. The ribbons were tied by a twist tie, so I simply undid the twist tie and put it aside for the next step. Set the detached ribbons aside for now.

Unfold and lay out the paper napkin

Unfold and lay out the paper napkin

I had a ton of flag printed paper napkins so I new they would be perfect for covering my base. Unfold the napkin and wrap it around the ball, then twist the ends so that you are holding it like a baloon. Use the twist tie to wrap around the gathered ends to secure the napkin around the ball.  The gathered ends of the napkin are the top of the flower bombs. Keep that in mind as you begin adding flowers and other accents.

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Locate where you want to put your first flower. Take your straight pin and poke a starter hole in the ball. Then use the knitting needle/chop stick to make the hole bigger and deeper. Pluck your flower from the stem and stick it in the hole you just made. Continue to do this until the desired amount of flowers are evenly dispursed around your ball. I used about eight medium sized flowers. I think the bombs would look awesome with more or bigger flowers. I kept my flowers a little spread out so that you could see the stars & stripes underneath.

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Store bought garland

You don't have to make everything

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Wire Craft Tools

Totally worth the purchase: I use these simple jewelry wire cutters for all types of crafts

Unravel  1-2 ft of the star wire garland and cut with wire cutters. Then cut into small sections so that one end is pointy and the other end has a few stars. The pointy ends will stick inside the balls, while the stars sit on top, to give the idea that the stars and flowers are bursting from the bombs. If you like, put a few dabs of hot glue under 1 or 2 petals on each flower, and around the stars on the ball to make it extra secure.

Stick the pointing end into the foam ball so that the stars curl off the surface. 

Stick the pointing end into the foam ball so that the stars curl off the surface. 

Create a swirl affect by wrapping the garland around the ball and securing with hot glue. Doing it this way is a little trickier, but with a little more time & patience you could totally do it! 

Create a swirl affect by wrapping the garland around the ball and securing with hot glue. Doing it this way is a little trickier, but with a little more time & patience you could totally do it! 

Return to the ribbon you previously disasembled. I used the blue & white starred ribbon and glued it to the top end of the flower bomb, keeping it in the shape of a bow. I also took a bigger red flower and glued it behind the bow to make the top really stand out. 

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Take a few strands of curled gift ribbon and wrap around the napkin ends for extra effect. Grab your scissors and cut the ends of the napkin so that they fray out like a fire cracker.

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For hanging: Take your ball and find the center you wish to run your string through. Take your straight pin and poke a starter hole. Then take the knitting needle and slowly poke and push all the way through to the other side. Then slowly pull the knitting needle back out and clear away any foam debrie.

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Unfold the paper napkin and find the center. Line the center up with the hole you just made in the ball. Hold in place with your finder. Grab your knitting needle, string side down, poke it back into the hole, all the way through to the other side.

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Cut the desired length of string or yarn. Take one end of the string and fold it over the pointy end of the knitting needle. Take a peice of scotch tape to secure the string to the needle. Set aside.

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Un-tape the string and hold it while you pull the knitting needle back out, leaving the string inside the ball. Wrap the napkin around the ball and twist the ends to secure with a twist tie. Proceed to decorating with flowers & stars!

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Keep it simple

Add a few flowers around the top with some curled ribbon for a simple look

Once you flower bombs are finished you can tie you stings to curtain rods, or attach to another garland so that they can be strung across a room. I made some to hang from our windows and a few to sit around a vase on our dining room table.

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They are sparkly, fun, and beautiful and most of all a project that really allows you to use your imagination. There are lots of accents you can poke or glue to your balls to make them truley unique to your vision of Independence Day.

I hope everyone has a chance to be with family & friends this holiday, and together y’all have a safe but fun 4th of July!

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Cheryl Elizabeth