Shabby Rose Tutorial (it's long!)

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

SO, as promised here's the Shabby Rose Tutorial. I accidentally made one of these the other day for this card. I was making a normal layered rose and discovered something by accident and I liked the results, so I had to share! It's very much a tattered style cabbage rose, so if you like that look and feel, read on! : )

Here's everything I used to make the rose and leaves. The cardstock I used to make the flower is Core'dinations Gemstones (I used the Garnet color), I haven't tried this technique with different types of cardstock yet but you need to use something fairly thick, you'll see further down why.

The small and medium sized layers are die-cut using Sizzix Tattered Florals die and the large layers (with the hole in the middle) and leaves are die-cut using Spellbinders Rose Creations dies. You can play around with the number of layers once you know the basic technique.

The medium sized layers need to be snipped with a scissors between the petals, this allows them to curl up a little more.

Starting with the largest outer layers, using a foam mat (you can see mine is well used!) and the rounded top of a pen, rub each petal in a circular motion towards the center and allow the petals to curl up. This is a basic cupping technique. Repeat for the three large layers.

This stage is optional but I like the look the needle nosed tweezers gives when you pinch and twist each petal. It adds nice definition.

To add some tonal variation in the color I rubbed some chalk ink on the tips of the petals, front and back. I did this for every layer of the rose. (I used VersaMagic Pink Grapefruit here.)

Repeat the cupping, pinching and inking steps for the three large layers and for three of the medium layers.

Ok, so for the center of the flower you should have one medium sized layer and two small layers. You want the shiny pearlescent side to be on the outside, so work on the reverse for this part.

Do the cupping technique on all three, pinch one of the smaller layers together and adhere inside the other small layer, making sure the petals are alternating. Add this to the center of the medium layer. Don't be afraid to scrunch it up, that actually helps!

Now, take the remaining three medium sized layers and adhere each in turn, alternating the petals, making sure each petal is half way between the two petals underneath.

It looks pretty nice just like this too, if you like a smaller rose. Now, this next bit is where you probably think I totally wrecked it! It was at this point I noticed some of the layers of cardstock had started to split probably from all the scrunching! So, using my needle-nosed tweezers I started to tease them apart, to create more delicate layers. I didn't do this with every petal, just here and there. As you can see below, this is what it looked like before I inked it.

Now, I inked the split layers using the chalk ink, just rubbing the surface. The split cardstock has a lovely texture to it, perfectly shabby and the chalk ink colors it beautifully.

Next, I curled some of these layers inward using the needle-nosed tweezers for a more natural looking rose.

We still have the larger layers to add by the way! So put the rose center above aside for a minute and take the remaining three large layers. This part is important, I really scrunched these three layers up, I wiggled them back and forth to break up the fibers inside the cardstock, so they'd be easier to split. You'll see one edge start to split, so start there and insert the tweezers and ease it apart, I started from the edge of two separate petals so as not to tear the joins.

It was actually quite easy to separate, I don't know if this works just with Core'dinations cardstock by the way, I haven't tried anything else yet!

So here you can see it split half way, it's very easy to pull apart from this point. The separated layers make lovely delicate petals, perfect for a shabby rose!

Repeat the separation for the three large layers. Then ink the edges with chalk ink front and back as before. So you should now have six large layers. (We're nearly there!)

There is tonal variations in these layers, you can alternated these when stacking the remaining layers, if you like.

I like to have the lightest layers at the bottom. Again I curled these layers inward using the tweezers for a softer look.

Next add the smaller layered center you set aside earlier to the middle of the rose. That's pretty much it!

The leaves are die-cut using the Rose Creations leaf dies. I used this leaf tutorial to create the above effect. Again I used some chalk inks to add some shading.

Before adding the rose and leaves to a project or card, it's easier to staple the leaves together, there's still some movement and it makes them easier to position.

The finished rose is about 3" in diameter, not including the leaves. It would make a great gift box topper and I have used it on cards too.

There is a bit of work involved in making these but if you love to make flowers (like me!) you'll really enjoy the process and the fabulous results!! : ) The next flower tutorial will be shorter!! I promise! : )


  1. What a beautiful flower, Clare! The other day I was looking through some solid papers for a certain color, and noticed that one of them had started to pull apart like you describe. Will have to check to see if it's a Core'dinations.....

  2. Lovely rose! Thank you for the tutorial! I'll PIN it for later use.

  3. Wow! I just popped over to say how much I loved your Case Study card and luckily found your awesome tutorial! I've got the Tim Holtz die which is similar so I'll have to give this a try. I think I might need some of of those tweezers! Your tutorial is very easy to follow and I'm sure you'll have made lots of people inspired to make roses!

  4. Fabulous! Had to pin this so I can have a go when some extra time becomes available :)

  5. Really gorgeous Clare thanks for a great tutorial! Ger x

  6. Great rose!!! Thank you for sharing with us this tutorial.
    I think that I'll try to do it but I don't have a Big Shot machine and any die-cuts but maybe just with using scissors.
    Greetings from Poland!

  7. Hi Clare, awesome rose, and I love the color. Been making mine like this for a long time and I find it does make a much fuller and beautiful rose.

    Thanks so much for the visit. Carole xox

  8. Fabulous job on this rose! These are my favorite flower dies and it was great to see your take on using them. I never think to crimp them with my tweezers! Brilliant! Hugs to you!

  9. Than you. Other Cardstock will split too. Doesn't always end up even (one side can be very, very thin and the other almost thick as before) nor can you split a whole shape without tearing it every time. Good to know the Cardstock you used cooperated.

  10. Oh Clare thanks for such a brill tut. Fabulous Rose and fabulous photography too - enjoyed that!! Appreciate too the effort and time you've taken to put it together.


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