Autumn Sunburst Dahlia: Paper Flower Craft Tutorial

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A beautiful display of autumn sunburst dahlia paper flowers in shades of pink and light orange.

The Autumn Sunburst Dahlia

Dahlias have graced my blog many times before, but this Autumn Sunburst Dahlia is by far my favorite dahlia design. While it takes a little more time, it is certainly worth it because it looks like the real thing!

Below you will find written and picture instructions, a step-by-step video tutorial, a resource and supply list, and of course, links to instant downloads of the Autumn Sunburst Dahlia flower templates in SVG cut files and PDF printables, as well as PNG image formats (DXF can be provided for any of our templates upon email request).

If you love paper dahlias as much as I do, then check out my other high-quality templates and tutorials:  

These dahlia autumn sunburst paper flower templates are not the only new blooms this season; many new small flower designs have come to the blog this year because my brand new ebook and template bundle, The Joy of Paper Flowers, has arrived!

My ebook not only includes the sunburst dahlia flower templates, it covers everything from Full Bloom Peonies to Camellia Roses. Let me tell you, my studio is bursting with blossoms at the moment!

Pro-Tip: New to Cricut? Join my free Cricut workshop!

Below is a full list of the supplies and resources that I used to create these warm autumn dahlias.

A closeup of a paper dahlia in autumn shades of pink, peach and orange, with a yellow center.

Supplies for Autumn Sunburst Dahlia Paper Flowers

The Paper Blooms Shaping Mat by Abbi Kirsten. These tools give you the ability to mold and shape your paper flower pieces.
Paper Blooms Shaping Mat and Toolset | Buy Here

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Already a Member? Log in and search the keyword “dahlia” or design #209 to find this Autumn Sunburst Dahlia template!

Pro-Tip: Get a full all-inclusive paper flowers supply list for beginners here.

If you don’t own a cutting machine, the paper Autumn Sunburst Dahlia listing includes PDF printable templates so you can cut by hand with scissors. You can also upload the SVG cut file to your Cricut or Silhouette machine! Curious if a Cricut machine is right for you? You can find out in my Cricut breakdown!

Gain Access to Tons of Free Paper Flower Templates in the Freebie Vault!

There are tons of templates for small and large flowers waiting for you in the shop, but I also have a Freebie Vault! To see what is in the Freebie Vault, sign up below! Then you can download your free beginner flower templates, SVG cut files, party printables, and more!

Are you ready to learn how to build these dahlia flowers that are perfect for Fall table settings? Scroll down to view the written instructions or watch the full step-by-step video tutorial.

A collage of 3 images shows a single autumn sunburst paper dahlia flower and a bouquet of three paper dahlias, all in gorgeous autumn colors of pink and peach with green and yellow leaves.

Video Tutorial for a DIY Paper Autumn Sunburst Dahlia

How to Make a Paper Autumn Sunburst Dahlia: Step-by-Step Instructions

A collage of 10 images shows the process of making a DIY autumn sunburst dahlia paper flower from start to finish, from creating the flower’s center piece to layering the flower petals and adding a stem.

Step 1: Gather Your Supplies

Always make sure you have all your supplies ready to go, and a clean and spacious work area for any of your craft projects.

Step 2: Cut Out Your Petals

Start by cutting out your petals and center bud pieces. I used shades of peach, coral and ivory, but your color choices depend on your preferences. The cutting machine measurements and quantities needed are as follows:

  • 2 Large petals: 5.3 x 5.5 inches
  • 2 Medium petals: 4.6 x 4.8 inches
  • 2 Small petals: 4 x 4.2 inches
  • 2 Center petal (larger): 3.9 x 3.5 inches
  • 3 Center petal (smaller): 2: 3.2 x 3.2 inches

Step 3: Distress the Petals (Optional)

If you choose to, you can use pan pastels and a stamper to shade the petals. You can also use ink or paint, whatever you choose! I like to add some color to the center bud and the petals because it gives the flowers dimension and it makes the petals look natural. My shading design method is demonstrated in the video tutorial and includes:

  • Adding darkness to the centers of the lighter petals (I used orange and yellow).
  • Dragging the coloring from the bottom of the petal upwards.
  • Leaving the top of the petals lighter.
  • Reversing the process for darker petals.
  • Working on a piece of disposable paper so I keep my workspace clean.
  • Keeping a damp rag or baby wipes nearby to clean my hands.

Step 4: Curl the Petals

The Autumn Sunburst Dahlia’s petals curl as it blooms. To achieve this effect, use a wood dowel or a pencil to curl the paper petals. You don’t have to curl the whole petal point, and you can be loose and free with the application. Do this with the petals with multiple petal points – the two 6-pointed petal layers will be curled later.

To get the petals points to stand up a little bit more, use the tools in the Paper Blooms Shaping Mat to roll the petals and mold the base into a bit of a cup.

Step 5: Building the Stem

  • Place the small foam ball on the top of the wire stem. This will help hold our center bud shape. The wire should just barely poke out of the top of the ball.
  • Add a little hot glue to the top and bottom of the foam ball on the wire.
  • Let the glue dry before proceeding.

Step 6: Building the Center Bud

Now we are going to add our petals to the stem and foam ball. It is helpful to use your scissors to punch a pilot hole through the center of each petal layer to prevent ruining your paper.

  • Thread a larger center bud cutout from the bottom of the wire to the underside of the foam ball.
  • Add glue to the base of the ball and push the petal cutout upwards.
  • Apply pressure to the top of the foam ball when pushing upwards.
  • Add glue to the top of the foam ball.
  • Close the cutout petal layer around the foam ball, so it is completely covered.
  • Add glue to the tips of petals that don’t attach to the foam ball and glue them to the other petal points.
  • Curl the petals upwards on the second larger center bud cutout.
  • Repeat the process of gluing the petal layer to the bottom of the foam ball.
  • Remember to apply equal pressure to the top and bottom of the foam ball!
  • Cup the second layer around the foam ball. You don’t need to glue it to the top of the first center bud layer.
  • Add the third center bud layer the same way as the second.

Step 7: Building the Paper Dahlia

The remaining petals are added to the stem the same way as the center bud layers.

  • Start by curling your two 6-pointed petal layers. Place the wood dowel in the center of each petal point and curl around the dowel. This is a horizontal curl, unlike the previous curling.
  • Thread these layers onto the stem in the same way as the last two layers. Add glue to the base before each layer and cup the petals around the center to look like the flower is blooming.
  • Make sure to alternate the petal points so the second layer’s petal points sit in the gaps of the first layer’s petal points.
  • Repeat this process with the remaining petal layers. They should go from center buds to darker petals and finish with the lighter petals.

Step 8: Finishing the Stem

If you want to make the stem look more polished, you can cut out an additional center bud layer in green and add it under all the flower petals as the flower’s base.

You can also wrap the stem in corsage tape if your stems will be visible.

You have just made an Autumn Sunburst Dahlia! This can be a little challenging for beginners, so be sure to take it slow and know that practice will make paper flowers even more fun and beautiful! I hope you had the best time with this pretty flower and floral pattern paper craft!

Autumn Sunburst Dahlia Paper Flower

Autumn Sunburst Dahlia Paper Flower

Active Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Difficulty: Easy

This autumn sunburst paper dahlia is the perfect fall color! Learn how to make this stunning, colorful flower for your fall events or home decor in just a few easy steps.

Instructions

Step 1: Gather Your Supplies

  • Always make sure you have all your supplies ready to go, and a clean and spacious work area for any of your craft projects.

Step 2: Cut Out Your Petals

The cutting machine measurements and quantities needed are as follows:

  • 2 Large petals: 5.3 x 5.5 inches
  • 2 Medium petals: 4.6 x 4.8 inches
  • 2 Small petals: 4 x 4.2 inches
  • 2 Center petal (larger): 3.9 x 3.5 inches
  • 3 Center petal (smaller): 2: 3.2 x 3.2 inches

Step 3: Distress the Petals (Optional)

  • If you choose to, you can use pan pastels and a stamper to shade the petals.

Step 4: Curl the Petals

  • To achieve this effect, use a wood dowel or a pencil to curl the paper petals.

Step 5: Building the Stem

  • Place the small foam ball on the top of the wire stem. The wire should just barely poke out of the top of the ball.
  • Add a little hot glue to the top and bottom of the foam ball on the wire.
  • Let the glue dry before proceeding.

Step 6: Building the Center Bud

  • Thread a larger center bud cutout from the bottom of the wire to the underside of the foam ball.
  • Add glue to the base of the ball and push the petal cutout upwards.
  • Apply pressure to the top of the foam ball when pushing upwards.
  • Add glue to the top of the foam ball.
  • Close the cutout petal layer around the foam ball, so it is completely covered.
  • Add glue to the tips of petals that don’t attach to the foam ball and glue them to the other petal points.
  • Curl the petals upwards on the second larger center bud cutout.
  • Repeat.

Step 7: Building the Paper Dahlia

  • Place the wood dowel in the center of each petal point and curl around the dowel. This is a horizontal curl, unlike the previous curling.
  • Thread these layers onto the stem in the same way as the last two layers. Add glue to the base before each layer and cup the petals around the center to look like the flower is blooming.
  • Make sure to alternate the petal points so the second layer’s petal points sit in the gaps of the first layer’s petal points.
  • Repeat this process with the remaining petal layers.

Step 8: Finishing the Stem

  • If you want to make the stem look more polished, you can cut out an additional center bud layer in green and add it under all the flower petals as the flower’s base.

Did you make this project?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

About Abbi Kirsten Collections

I have spent the last 9+ years building my creative skills and sharing them with others. My flower designs are created with simplicity, color and crafty fun in mind. If you haven’t yet, be sure to join the subscriber community to gain access to all my freebies or visit my signature design shop here!

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