I am going to show you how to make a really fun, festive, party headband, inspired by the Dolce & Gabbana Autumn/Winter 2016 campaign. Big, bright flowers featured heavily in the Dolce & Gabbana collection, as did headbands, sequins and black petersham bows and embellished details.
You can either buy individual flower stems from your local florist, or have a look at the ready made seasonal mixed bouquets in your local supermarket. I ended up using a mixture of both for this headpiece in order to get a really vibrant mix of colours.
This project is fairly advanced, it will take you about an hour and there is quite a long list of materials and equipment, but the results are worth it. I'm going to give you 2 options with this project, with and without the petersham and diamanté buckle bow. If you would rather keep it simple then leave out step 5. I will mark the materials for the bow as optional.
What you'll need:
Some fresh seasonal flowers. I have used 2 roses, 2 stocks, 6 freesia, 2 stems of lisianthus, 1 clematis stem and some eucalyptus. A mixture of large and medium sized flowers is ideal and this mix has the added delight of scented stocks and freesia.
A satin covered headband 1.5 cm wide.
Some 2cm wide sequin trim about 45cm long.
A circular sinamay fascinator base, approximately 10cm diameter, in a similar colour to your flowers.
A glue gun.
A can of craft mount spray.
Some round headed pins.
A tube of Oasis floral adhesive.
A dressmakers tape measure.
A diamante buckle. Mine is 5cm x 2.5cm (optional)
About 40cm of petersham ribbon as wide as the buckle height, so in my case 5cm wide (optional).
Some clear nail polish (optional).
A needle & some thread to match your petersham ribbon (optional).
Step 1 :
Choose your flowers.
Lay your chosen trim, sequin side down, on a surface protected by newspaper, and spray with craft mount, following the instructions on the can.
Carefully stick this to the top side of your headband so there is some excess trim at either end.
Cut off all but about 1cm of the excess sequin trim, folding it under and pressing it to stick to the under side of the headband..
On a protected surface, plug your glue gun to heat up.
Hold the round sinamay fascinator base, off centre, on the sequin covered headband so that one edge of the sinamay sits in the centre of the band and the other will sit lower down towards your right ear.
Mark the position, either side of the sinamay, using 2 pins in the sequin trim.
Lift off the sinamay base and apply a small amount of glue from your glue gun to the sequin trim between the marker pins.
Immediately press the sinamay base down firmly on the hot glue, holding only the outer edges where the sinamay is thicker. Make sure that the glue that seeps through the holes in the centre does not burn your fingers.
Hold for a few minutes until dry.
Remember to unplug your glue gun.
Cut all your stems to around 5cm.
Take one large statement flower, for example a rose, decide on a good position at the front of the headpiece making sure the flower head sits on the edge of the sinamay and the stem points in to the centre. You may want to put the headband on your head and look in a mirror each time you decide where to place a flower.
Apply a thin layer of Oasis floral adhesive to the stem and to the sinamay in the position you want your flower to lie.
Once both glued surfaces feel tacky, press firmly together, whilst being careful not to crush the flower head.
Repeat with another large flower, for example a stock.
Then repeat with a cluster of smaller flowers such as freesia and some eucalyptus leaves.
Continue to build around the sinamay base until flowers and leaves cover the entire circumference.
Then repeat more layers to build some height to the headpiece. The flowers for these further layers may need the stems trimming slightly, and the heads should be angled up to give an overall domed effect. Keep the flowers fairly compact but allow leaves, flower tips and trailing stems to poke out, as a little wildness will make it look more interesting.
Step 5 (optional buckle & bow):
On a protective surface, plug in your glue gun to heat up.
Mark the centre line of your petersham ribbon with a pin. This will be the top of your bow.
Fold one end the ribbon under at a slight angle, 8cm from the centre.
Fold the other end of the ribbon under at the same angle, 8cm from the centre, crossing over the back.
Use the initial central pin marker to pin through all 3 layers of ribbon.
Trim the ends of the ribbon around the length of the bow loops and seal the very edges of the cut ends with a thin layer of clear nail polish to prevent fraying.
Thread your ribbon bow through the diamanté buckle and stitch the petersham to it, using thread that matches the ribbon. Remove the pin when you are finished.
Attach the bow to the top of the headband, next to the flowers, using the glue gun.
Remember to unplug your glue gun.
It is best to leave your flowers in water for as long as possible and cut the stems at the last minute for optimum freshness.
If necessary you can store your floral headpiece in the fridge for a few hours or overnight. Be aware that some flowers fare better out of water or in the fridge, for example in this project the roses (if still fairly tight) and freesia should be fine, but the lisianthus, stock and clematis may droop. If in doubt ask your florist for some advice.
If you are short on time on the day of the party, cover the headband in the sequin trim, attach the sinamay fascinator base and make the petersham bow in advance.
There are plenty of online shops which sell satin covered headbands and sinamay fascinator bases. I often use The Trimming company.
If you can't get a 1.5cm wide headband then use a wider one, just make sure your sequin trim is a little wider than the headband.
I used a vintage diamanté buckle, but you can buy a similar one from Barnett Lawson. I also got my sequin braid from here and they have a really large range of colours to choose from.
If you want to re-use your headband then you can carefully pull off the dead flowers, keeping the rest of the headband intact, and then simply stick on more flowers.
If you think you'd like to make more fresh floral headpieces it may be worth investing in a dummy head to work on and store your headpieces on. This makes it easier for you and will stop delicate flowers getting bruised or crushed. You can get very cheap heads made from polystyrene or invest in a wooden display head or a fabric wig block.