Last month I made my son, Bennett, a money rosette to gift him upon his graduation from high school. This particular project has turned out to be a pretty popular, so I am sharing the detailed how-to instructions from my new book, Rosette Art: Instructions and Papers for Making Beautiful Rosettes to Share, Wear, and Display.
Gifting cash just got a whole lot more creative with this money rosette. Perfect for the graduate, wedding couple, or as a special event prize, money rosettes can be made with any dollar denomination and make a truly unique presentation.
You will need:
- 17 new U.S. dollar bills: 8 for the base accordion-fold tier, 4 for the petal tier, 4 for tailpieces, and 1 for the centerpiece. (To keep your rosette uniform in design, use same dollar denomination elements in each layer.)
- Bone folder
- 24-gauge craft wire
- Wire cutters
- 2 1/2-in button badge form*
- Dull craft knife
- Needle-nose pliers
- One pre-made 3 1/2-in decorative paper (1/4-in accordion-fold) rosette tier and paper strip tails (optional, see instructions in Rosette Art)
- Paper clip
1. To make the accordion-fold base tier, divide a dollar bill into eight long folded sections. Begin by folding the bill in half lengthwise and then in half again. Unfold and press flat, revealing four fold sections. Beginning at the bottom of the bill, fold each of the four sections in half, creating an accordion fold and making the eight sections. Press well at the creases using a bone folder. Repeat with the seven remaining dollar bills.
2. Gather two accordion-folded bills at their centers and wrap with a 6-in length of wire and twist the wire to the back.Repeat the process with two more accordion folded bills. Connect the two pairs of accordion folded bills together at the center with wire.
3. Fold the remaining four accordion-folded bills in half. Spread apart the two pairs of wire connected bills at each end and slide two accordion folded bills into each spread, wiring all bills together at the center and twisting wire to the back. 4. Spread folds of all bills to create a full rosette layer. 5. To make the petal rosette layer, fold under all edges of four dollar bills: 1/2 in on the long edges and 1/4 inch on the ends. 6. Loosely fold over the bill horizontally and use the bone folder to burnish a 2-in crease at the center along the fold area.
7. Fold back the outer horizontal edges to meet at the center fold and again burnish a 2-in crease at the center.
8. Pinch the creased section with one hand and puff out the petals near the ends. Your bill will now resemble a bow tie. Repeat with three more bills. 9. Place one pair of petal bows together using an 8-in length of wire, connect their centers together. Repeat this process with the additional pair.
10. With one pair of bills tied together, spread open a section between the bills’ petals and place a second tied pair into the spread section, securing all bills together by wrapping the wire tightly around the center section.
11. To connect the two layers of dollar bill rosettes, thread a 12-in length of wire through the two center gaps of the petal rosette and down into the center gaps of the accordion-fold rosette. 12. The centerpiece for the money rosette is created using a 2 1/2-in button badge form. Once the original button badge is disassembled for reuse, remove the pin-back hardware and replace it with a 24-in length of wire with ends hanging out from the holes. Fold and press the dollar around to the back of the badge. The top and bottom of the dollar won’t quite wrap to the back but can be manipulated to appear as if they do by pressing those areas over and over again with your thumb, smoothing them around the curved edges of the button badge. Secure the dollar in place by replacing the backing plate. You may need to bend the edges of the backing plate inward to make it fit. Using needle-nose pliers, make certain the back and front plates secure the dollar without tearing it. You can use a small section of hot glue to reassemble the back and front plates at the very center, but be careful not to glue the dollar bill itself.
13. (Optional if crafting with decorative paper.) Using a craft knife, cut two small holes into the decorative paper rosette in alignment with the wires that protrude from the back of the centerpiece button badge.
14. Thread the long wire ends protruding from the back plate through the decorative paper rosette tier and the two dollar bill tiers, and secure by twisting the wires together at the back.
15. To make the dollar tailpieces, begin by folding the bottom corner of one bill back 45 degrees. Repeat with another bill at the same end, folding back the opposite corner. Stack the bills together to create a fishtail effect with corner folds positioned at the bottom. 16. Fold back 1/4 inch of both bills together at the top, and fold back again 1/4 in. Thread a 20-in section of wire under the fold, wrapping to the top and twisting the wire ends together. Repeat this tailpiece process with another pair of dollar bills. Connect both pairs of tailpiece bills by twisting the four ends of wire together. 17. Secure the tailpiece wires to the centerpiece wires at the back of the rosette. Curl all wires into a loop secured at the center area by twisting the wire ends back on themselves. Use this loop for safety-pinning the money rosette to clothing or as hanging hardware for displaying. Be sure to tuck in all wire ends to avoid snagging clothing or skin.
18. (Optional if crafting with decorative paper.) Cut two strips of decorative paper and staple them together at the top to make a tailpiece. Use the paper clip to secure them to the top of the dollar tailpieces, and clip the ends like fishtails.
* For button badge forms, I repurposed Wilton Party Button Favors purchased at the craft store.
You may notice in the first photo that I added another single (larger denomination) bill to the back of the tail section of the rosette I made for Bennett. It was added by folding over the top section of the bill twice and securing with wire as in steps 16 & 17. The bottom was left flat. Please use caution when wearing this rosette during activities so as not to loose it!
Rosette Art is available wherever books are sold.