If you're looking for a quick and easy way to brighten your Easter table, look no further than your pantry to create some bright and cheerful springtime flowers using coffee filters.
All you need:
basket-style coffee filters
watercolors or food coloring
pipe cleaners, skewers or floral picks (the kind with wire attached to the end)
Start by covering your work surface with newspaper or a vinyl tablecloth. This gets a bit messy!
If using food coloring rather than watercolors (which I used), get a small cup for each color you want to use, then add a few drops of coloring to a bit of water--depending on how dark you want the colors. I wouldn't use more than a cup of water at the most, as you might be prone to spills with little ones.
Fold your coffee filter into eighths, by first folding in half, then in half again, and in half one more time.
Once you have your shape, start painting. Be sure to load it on, since it needs to absorb through all of those layers. Paint the front and the back.
You could also just let the kids paint the coffee filter as it's lying flat on the table. You can get some really interesting designs this way.
Or just stick your hands in paint, smear it all over the filter and crumple it up, like this guy:Step 3
Allow the paint to dry completely, which shouldn't take more than an hour or so. You could open up the folded filters when they're half dry, so they dry out faster (I suggest not trying to unfold a completely wet one, since it might rip).
Fold your coffee filters back into the triangle shape if you've unfolded them to dry. You'll need your floral picks too (those green things in the photo below, usually about $2 a pack), but bamboo skewers or even pipe cleaners would work too.
Then cut a few scallops along the outer edge of the wedge
When you open it up, it will look like this:Step 5
Choose another painted coffee filter with a coordinating color, fold it like the first one, and cut the scallops a little closer to the center, making a smaller flower.
This will be the center "petals" on your flower. Lay the smaller on on top of the large one, and pinch it in the middle underneath.
Using the wire on the floral picks (or a pipe cleaner), wrap the pinched part of the flower. If using a skewer, wrap the pinched part around the stick and tape it on.
It's easy to twirl the flower as you're wrapping rather than winding the wire around the base. Make sure you get it tightly bound.
You're finished! Fluff your flowers a bit and stick them in a pretty vase or poke the floral sticks into a piece of foam and fill a flower pot with them.
Enjoy, and Happy Easter!