Once upon a time, tattoos were relegated to certain imposing fringe types: punks, rockers, gangbangers, and bikers, to name a few. These days, though, it’s clear tattoos are having a fashion moment with everyone from models, bloggers, and It-girls to seemingly wholesome celebrities getting inked.
There’s no denying that the right tattoo can look incredibly cool and of-the-moment, but there’s one not-so-small caveat: They’re permanent, people. So unless you’re 5,000% positive you’ll still be obsessed with that artsy symbol/slice of pizza/celtic knot/inspiring quote/your new boyfriend/girlfriend/cat in 30 years, it might be best to get the look using temporary versions. The only problem there? We kind of feel like metallic flash tattoos had their moment, and other fake versions always end up looking uneven and, well, fake.
That’s why we’re loving this original tutorial from Emily Geraghty of That Cheap Bitch, a money-saving and DIY style blog, which shows you how to make short-lived tattoos from real dried flowers. So pretty, and so easy! Read on for a step-by-step guide, and be sure to like Emily’s blog on Facebook!
Step 1: Buy your flowers.
Emily used two potted African violets: one with pink flowers and one with dark purple, as well as two red carnations for a bright pop, but you can use any color combo you want.
2. Express-press your flowers
Pressing flowers the traditional way can take weeks. Instead of sticking her buds in a book and waiting, Emily dried them out in 30 seconds with a microwave. She put her flowers face down on a paper towel on top of a plate, then put another paper towel on top of the blossoms, and then pressed them down with another plate.
Emily noted that the red carnations kept a lot more of their color during the drying process, and were sturdier than the violets after coming out of the microwave. She notes that it’s key to take all your delicate petals off the hot paper towels immediately, and transfer them right-side-up to a dry paper towel.
3. Apply your petals!
To adhere the flowers, Emily used brush-on eyelash glue. She painted a little bit on her skin and carefully patted the flower into place. On petals that didn’t quite stick, she used the eyelash glue like Mod Podge and decoupaged them into place over the petals. After she finished her design, she sealed the flowers by spraying them with hairspray.
Here’s how it turned out!
Even though the petals were delicate, Emily said the the finished product was anything but. “They stayed on through wind, under my jacket, and took quite a bit of effort to eventually get off,” she wrote on her blog.
If you don’t want to commit to having these glued on your arms all day, the tutorial that inspired her process suggests using vaseline to stick on the flowers! Win-win.