Cardboard Activity Lab:
How To Make Funky Flowers

by Jemma Westing

Cardboard is an incredibly versatile craft material. You can fold it, roll it, cut it, tape it, and paint it to make exciting things such as colourful lizards, balancing butterflies, robot costumes, and much more. The projects in Cardboard Activity Lab were inspired by the activities at BrilliantBuilds – a workshop I set up to offer young families an encouraging space where they can inspire one another and be creative together. Now you can enjoy these projects, too. Get creative making these funky flowers and discover how much fun recycling can be!


This beautiful spray of bright, exotic flowers makes a fantastic decoration for your desk or windowsill. Or you can use them to make a hanging garland to bring colour to any room.

These flowers have three rings of petals: two made from a cardboard tube, and one from a template. The more evenly spaced the petals are, the neater your flower will look so measure and cut carefully.


    • Thin cardboard box
    • White paper
    • Scissors
    • Pencil
    • Glue
    • Sticky tape
    • Wooden sticks
    • Paints
    • Paintbrushes
    • Ruler
    • Petal template


1. Use a pencil and ruler to draw a rectangle on a piece of thin card. Draw a line down the middle of the rectangle, then add more lines to roughly match the pattern shown below.
2. Cut out the rectangle, then roll it into a tube with the pencil lines facing out. Use sticky tape to hold the tube together.
3. Use scissors to cut along the lines on each side of the tube. Be careful not to cut into the gap in the middle, or your flower will fall apart.
4. Gently bend the shorter set of strips outwards, so they form curves. These will become the middle ring of petals on your flower.
5. To create the inner ring of petals, push the longer strips through the tube so that they stick out on the other side. Fold the bases of the strips along the time to keep them in place.
6. Screw a piece of paper up into a tight ball, then wedge it securely into the center of the tube. You may need to add a little glue to the outside of the ball of paper to hold it in place.
7. To make the outer ring of petals, copy the petal template onto a piece of thin card. Turn the template over, then draw around it again to make a complete ring of petals.
8. Use scissors to cut out the complete outer ring of petals. Don’t cut down the middle!


9. To fix your flower together, put a dab of glue in the center of your outer petal shape, then stick the rest of the flower securely on top.
10. Press down on the ball of paper in the center of your flower to make sure all the pieces are securely stuck together.
11. Now it’s time to paint your flower. Choose a main color for each section, then add details and patterns on top.


12. To make the stalk, use sticky tape to fix a stick or straw to the back of your flower. Your brilliant bloom is now ready to display in a vase or flowerbed.