High-quality silk flowers look so realistic that you feel you have to touch them to see they aren't alive. Artificial flowers are also available in paper, crystal and glass. Use them anywhere you would place fresh flowers. Besides never wilting, artificial flowers have several more advantages. They come in fantasy colours such as gold, pearlescent and iridescent. And in colours that real flowers don't usually bloom in such as black. Sizes can be much larger than real life. A single stem of an artificial flower placed in a crystal vase looks stunning.
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A long-stemmed red rose is the symbol of true love. Artificial roses come in red and every other colour. Sizes range from small roses about an inch long to giant roses 6 inches across. Crystal roses are made of hand blown glass and then cut to shape. Glass roses are also made in moulds. Paper roses are made of crepe paper. Sequinned fabric roses are used as jewellery and as fashion accessories for clothing.
Giant sunflowers have a single flower atop a tall -- up to 12 foot -- stem. Artificial sunflowers, of course have a much shorter stem, the tallest about 3 feet. Sunflowers come in various shades of gold, yellow and burgundy. Most have a ruffle of petals around a rather large seed head. Silk sunflowers are common, but they also are made of paper.
Irises bloom on a single stem, although there can be subsequent blooms on the same stem. Bearded irises have a fuzzy row down the centre of the bottom petals which may have led to the name bearded. They are the largest of the iris, the blooms being as much as 6 inches tall and 4 inches wide. Silk irises look very much like fresh ones. Other iris varieties include Japanese and Dutch. A crystal iris tinted in purples and greens is breathtaking.
Carnations look like a frilly powder puff at the end of the stem. In nature they're about 3 inches across and shaped like a half-sphere when fully open. Colours include white, red, orange, purple, pink and yellow. Some varieties are splashed or rimmed with a contrasting colour. Silk carnations are easy to find. Glass carnations are a bit more of a challenge. Carnations are made from tissue paper, facial tissue and crepe paper. Crepe paper carnations can be huge when made from 18 inches by 24 inches sheets of tissue paper. The edges are cut with pinking shears for the ruffled look.
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