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Hand Flowers

Several years ago I stumbled across someone's blog showing how to create lovely and simple hand print flowers and I decided to try to recreate them as over the past few weeks I realized how meaningful one's hands are.... all the things and people we touch both in our family, friends, strangers, pets through acts of love and service from everything from shaking hands to hugs to cooking and baking cookies to baby snuggles to knitting to planting flowers to.... fill in the blank.

I recently visited one of my sisters-in-law and she had a sweet saying near her kitchen sink. It was probably left over from when my nephew was a baby. I've rewritten it slightly as a reminder of how special our hands are.

Sometimes the littlest fingers leave the biggest handprint on our hearts.

So, this week, I decided to focus on a craft to remind me of the handprints being left on my heart and my family's hearts. These hand flowers are perfect for spring and Easter and Mother's Day or even just because you know someone needs a little cheering up. I'll be sending a box of these "hands" to grandparents this week.

You'll need: white or colored copy paper, pencil, scissors, tape, yellow and green pipe cleaners and pliers for cutting the wires, screwdriver (optional).

Start by tracing your hands or your kids' hands onto white or a colored piece of paper with a pencil. I wanted different sizes of finished flowers, so I used hand prints from all three of my kids.

Then carefully cut out of the hand prints and erase any pencil markings. Then you'll need to gently roll the palm of the hand print into a cone shape. You will need to leave a small hole to pull the stem through later on. I decided to use a double-sided tape, but you can also use a scotch tape-type of tape and tape the cone into place on the outside. (I also decided to write each child's name and the year on the outside of the hand for future reference.)

Next cut the pipe cleaners. The green needs to be approximately 6" long and the yellow, approximately 3" long. Bend the yellow 3" pipe cleaners in half and into a "V" shape. At one end of the green pipe cleaners, bend a small hook. Place the green hook through the middle of the "V" and twist the green pipe cleaner around so the yellow will stay put. Then bend one of the sides of the "V" down and in half. Using the longer side of the yellow, tightly wrap it around the shorter folded side starting near the green and working up. It's ok if the longer yellow ends before getting to the folded shorter half.

Carefully insert the green stem through the flower and down through the little hole at the bottom of the flower cone. Using either a pencil, pen, or screwdriver, gently roll the little fingers outward. I found the screwdriver made tighter coils which held their curl better, even when I unrolled them, compared to a pencil.

Your hand flowers are finished and ready for a special someone or as a beautiful reminder of how important and special your hands truly are! Keep crafting!

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