How to Make Mexican Paper Flowers

By Jennifer Shea

August 26, 2013

Trophy Cupcakes’ Jennifer Shea demonstrates how to make tissue flowers for your Day of the Dead part

This article originally appeared in the October 2013 issue of Seattle Magazine.

Image Credit: 

Rina Jordan


Tissue paper is from Packaging Specialties (

Heavy Italian crepe paper rolls are from Carte Fini (


5 sheets of tissue paper (20 x 30)

3 30-inch lengths of heavy (180 gm) crepe paper in different colors


Light gauge wire

Ribbon or twine, if hanging


Start by fan-folding the tissue paper in 3-inch sections. Keep all 5 sheets stacked while doing this and start from the narrow end. Trim the ends of the fan-folded tissue paper into a rounded shape. Lay flat.


Now fan-fold the color of tissue paper you want to stack on top of the tissue. Fan-fold and trim about 5 inches off one end. Trim the ends into points of the shape of your choice. Lay flat and centered on top of the tissue.


Repeat this process with the other length of crepe paper, trimming 10 inches this time and rounding the edges. Lay it flat on top of the other stack and center the paper (see photo).

Fan-fold your last piece of crepe paper in half lengthwise and cut so you have two long strips; this will become the center of your flower. Take one strip and fold in half and in half again. Snip about every quarter-inch toward the center of the paper, “fringing” both sides of the strip, being careful not to cut the strip all the way through. Unfold the paper and fringe any areas that were missed while the paper was folded. Lay the strip down the center of the other sheets of paper.


Now fan-fold all of the sheets together trying to keep the sheets centered one on top of the other. The fan folds should be about 3 to 4 inches. Tightly secure the center of the fan fold with an 8-inch piece of wire. Now carefully pull the fringed crepe paper (the top, narrowest piece of paper) out and away from the other petals. Once the center is out, pull the next layer of petals out and away from the other petals. Do this until you reach the tissue, then fluff the tissue and petals to create your flower. You may want to use double-stick tape on the petals to keep the flower open. Arrange the blooms in copious amounts all around your party.

Go back to Entertaining: A Day of the Dead-Themed Fiesta


Rocky Rochon’s keen eye for space and color has transformed everything from penthouses to townhomes. At age 67, he’s not done yet.