Monday, May 30, 2011

Happy Memorial Day

I hope you are all out enjoying your Memorial Day activities. Let's remember to give thanks for those that have lost their lives for our freedom.

We will finish wedding season ideas this week with a couple projects you won't want to miss...

Friday, May 27, 2011

Personalized Do-It-Yourself Pet Collars

Include Your Best Friend in Your Big Day: 

Before I begin today’s project I would like to talk a bit about this crazy week we have had here in Oklahoma. First, my heart goes out to all those in our state (and surrounding states) that have faced such devastation and loss. We are so fortunate to have been safe and spared. I am very afraid of severe weather! Therefore, I insisted we have a storm shelter installed in our home. Ironically, I was filming a commercial in a neighboring city when the weather took a nasty turn. I called my husband to make sure he could go home to get himself and our dog (and our neighbors) in our storm shelter. After hours of sirens and tornados criss crossing our state we emerged to find our areas safe but so many in total ruin. I urge each of you to involve yourself in just one small act of kindness, however you feel moved, whether it is donating goods, time, or money. 

As you all know I am all about the animals! I have learned that The Guthrie Animal Shelter and Evergreen Place Rescue of Yukon have faced demolition from the May 24th tornado out-break. This is where I plan to put my efforts. I so hope you will also feel compelled to help those warm hearts and cold noses that while able to love us unconditionally are unable to open cellar doors and take shelter in our absence.

Okay, on a lighter note, but still talking about our pets, why not include them in wedding festivities or just change their collar occasionally for special events? Though I was unable to directly involve my little guy in my wedding he celebrated at the reception in a miniature bow tie. Regardless if your pet is a part of your wedding or you are not getting married and just want to make a special present for them this collar is adorable, easy, personalized and made from things you already have. 

You will need: 

  • Ribbons - multiple widths 
  • Watchband - old, broken 
  • Brads 
  • X-acto knife 
  • Scissors 
  • Fabric glue 
  • Your pet's collar to measure from (optional) 
  • Metal slides (optional) 

A few considerations before beginning: 

If you are making this collar for your pet to coordinate with an event such as a wedding this would be a great place to tie in your colors. You will find most weddings have the same ribbon on multiple bouquets or tied to the programs; this would be a perfect choice for one of your ribbon selections. 

Look at the size of your watchband. Is the ribbon the same size as the part of the watchband you will attach it to? It should be. If it is too small place a coordinating ribbon below it and if it is too large, choose a different ribbon. 

You want to create a focal point for the collar. In the wedding spirit, I chose a ribbon with the word “love” printed on it for my focal point. As you can see below I have shown a couple alternate looks. The focal point on one is a metal slide. Let your other ribbon choices support, but not compete with your focal point. For instance, if you would like to use two printed ribbons: first make sure they do not challenge one another and second layer in solid colored ribbons. 

Here are two options if you do not have a forth ribbon or would prefer a slide to a ribbon with a word 
or logo on it.

Before you begin make sure all your ribbons are wrinkle free. If you have a flat iron keep your setting appropriately low and run your ribbons through the paddles. It really saves me the hassle of hauling out the iron and ironing board. 

Turn under your unfinished edges on the two center pieces. Turn under the edges however you would like: glue, sew, finger-press, iron. You may want to glue these two pieces together. It is helpful. You may only have one center piece depending on the style you chose. 

Find the middle point of the ribbon on the third layer (the solid brown ribbon) and center your two pieces atop. Using your X-acto cut a small slit through all three ribbons. 

Insert brads through holes. 

Use your pet’s collar to adjust the placement of the watchband. With a pencil, lightly mark a line where you will attach the band to the ribbon. I glued the brown and silver ribbons together from the center to the pencil line. 

Fold the smaller brown ribbon to the front where it aligns with the pencil mark and glue. Fold the silver ribbon also to the front and glue only to the folded front side of the brown ribbon leaving the back side of the brown ribbon and the front side of the silver ribbon unattached. 

Cut just enough back from the watchband edge so that the brad will not rip loose. Poke the X-acto knife through to the top ribbon. Mark the spot the ribbon has been cut. 

This gets a little tricky...notice I am wearing a band-aid in the pictures following this one. Remember I asked you not to glue the back of the brown to the front of the silver. You want to cut through the piece of silver ribbon where it is folded over, but not the back piece. You also want to cut through both layers of the brown ribbon. 

Prepare the watch band by driving the brad through the hole you made with the X-acto knife. 

Now push the brad (still attached to the watchband) through the three layers of ribbon and fold back the metal ends securing the ribbon to the band. By leaving a layer unattached in the back you are creating a barrier between your dog’s skin and the metal. 

Place a dab of glue to secure the ribbons together...we would not want our pets to get a toenail hung in a loop. 

Voila! Dash “loves” his new collar and I’m sure your pet will too!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Wedding Gift Bags

You have already bought the gift, so do not buy the gift bag! We all have bags and ribbons around the house to make a personalized gift bag with supplies you already have. Whether you are giving the bride and groom a gift or are the bride and groom giving “thank you” gifts this is a great way to clean out some of the sacks you have around the house and make a nice gift presentation for free. Remember, you can transition this to other occasions and holidays.

You will need:

  • Solid color bag with handles
  • Card (used)
  • Ribbon
  • Glue
  • Hole-punch
  • Scissors
As you can see in the picture above, I used a paper bag from a local store. The bag can be colored or possibly plastic, but should be a solid color with handles in the style shown. If it has a logo on it indicating the store you received the bag from, but not the gift inside you will want to look for an image large enough to cover the logo. If the logo spans the majority of the bag…choose a different bag.

I am married, so, I have many “yeah, you’re getting married” cards in my repurposing card box. It does not have to be an engagement/bridal/wedding card just something appropriate. No matter how you really feel about the marriage or the couple, try to pick a nice picture of a flower or something pleasant…not a birthday cake, Christmas tree or a black cat from a Halloween card! If you have a great picture of the couple you may consider using that if you do not have an appropriate card. I would suggest placing a paper frame around the picture to give a finished appearance. Also, choose your image considering whether it will: cover the store logo and appear professional (store bought).

Cut the image you have chosen from the card. Punch centered holes in both sides of your image.

Choose a ribbon that color coordinates with your card. You want a ribbon that is about ½” to 1”. If your ribbon is too wide you will have trouble threading it through the holes and if it is too skinny it may look disproportionate if you are making a large gift sack like this one. Thread the ribbon through either side of the card cut-out.

Punch another hole at the top of the card cut-out. Thread the ribbons from the back side of the image through the front of the top hole. Slide the ribbons (still attached to the card) over the top of the bag. With a pencil mark the ribbon and the cut-out placement. Remove the ribbon and card. Place a swipe of glue over the marked area. Replace the cut-out and ribbon pressing them into the glue. Use glue that will hold your ribbon in place. A glue stick may not be strong enough to hold your ribbon. Once you have everything in place tie your bow at the top. *Note: if you do not have ample ribbon yardage it is not necessary to attach ribbon all the way around the bag. Just the front side is fine.

Voila! A personalized wedding gift bag.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Blueberries and Cream Bon-bons

How to Make Blueberries and Cream Bon-bons

These bon-bons are just oozing with southern charm. You can make them whenever you have left over cake scraps and freeze them for later. These bon-bons are perfect to toss in a pretty coffee table dish whenever guests give you little warning of their arrival or to present in mini baking cups at a bridal brunch.

You will need:

  • 2 c. white cake scraps
  • ¼ c. low fat Philadelphia cream cheese
  • ¼ c Paula Deen blueberry preserves
  • 9 oz (about 1.5 c) white chocolate morsels

Mix cake scraps, Philadelphia cream cheese, and blueberry preserves by hand in a medium mixing bowl. Do not over beat.

Dollop spoonfuls of dough to roll into balls on a cookie sheet covered in wax paper. *Note: each ball should be about an inch in diameter or a little smaller than a ping pong ball. Refrigerate for 15 minutes for dough to become firm enough to shape into balls.

Remove from refrigerator and roll into balls.

Freeze for 20-30 minutes. 

In a small sauce pan melt white chocolate morsels on medium. *Note: if too thick add shortening a tsp. at a time.

Remove dough balls from the freezer and dip in melted chocolate fully coating each and scraping off any excess. Place each ball back on the sheet of wax paper. Place in a sealed freezer-safe container after cooling.

 Return the batch to the freezer until serving.  

Yields approx. 20 bon-bons, feel free to double or triple the recipe according to your needs.

Place in mouth. Smile. Enjoy!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Dress Week: the etiquette of weddings and wedding attire

Another beautiful Kelly Beane photo of my lovely dress!
The Etiquette of Weddings and Wedding Attire:
  • Location– chapel or home
  • Time of day – any time of day
  • Reception – any type
  • Number of guests – few, intimate
  • Groom attire – three piece suit
  • Bridal gown –
    • $ (dress can be worn on other occasions at a later date)       
    • street or tea length       
    • any color, but black
    • Veil – may or may not wear veil
  • Location – church or home
  • Time of day – any time of day
  • Reception – hors d’oeuvres
  • Number of guest - 100 or less
  • Groom attire – dinner jacket for evening or three-piece suit for afternoon
  • Bridal gown –
    • $-$$ 
    • Floor (or less) length without train or sweep length train
    • White or pastel
    • Veil – no longer than hip length

  • Location – church
  • Time of day – any time of day
  • Reception – buffet type meal
  • Number of guest - 50 or more
  • Groom attire – tux, classic cut away
  • Bridal gown –
    • $$$
    • Floor length dress with sweep or chapel length train      
    • White, or in today’s times eggshell or pastels
    • Veil – short or long
Ultra formal:
  • Location – church
  • Time of day – afternoon or evening
  • Reception – sit down dinner
  • Number of guest - 50 to 500 guests
  • Groom attire – coat with tails
  • Bridal gown – (as shown above)
    • $$$$
    • Floor length dress with cathedral length train     
    • White, or in today’s times eggshell or pastels
    • Veil – long
    • May wear long sleeves or gloves

  • Groomsmen attire should be similar, but not identical to groom. Groomsmen assume rental fees for tux/suit.
  • Bridesmaid’s attire should match formality. Any color but white. Bridesmaids assume cost for their dress. Brides should consider cost and ability to repeat wear. *A good idea for the bride is to select about five dress options and let bridesmaids vote or choose any of the five options.
  • Flower girl(s) attire should match formality, may resemble bride or bridesmaid’s dresses (same or similar fabric). Parents or guardians of flower girls typically assume dress cost.
  • Ring bearer’s attire should be a miniature version of the groomsmen or best suit. Parents or guardians of ring bearer typically assume suit/tux cost or rental fee.
  • Mother of the bride and mother of the groom’s attire should match formality in length and style and be age appropriate, but flattering. Each mother’s dress should be individual. Mother of the bride chooses dress first.
  • Father of the bride and father of the groom’s attire should be similar to groomsmen or formal suits.  
Bride and Groom Expenses:

  • Typically, grooms assume the cost of the bride’s engagement and wedding ring, the bouquets, boutonnieres, both mom’s corsages, groomsmen’s gifts, gift for the bride and the honeymoon.
  • Typically, bride and/or brides family is responsible for EVERYTHING ELSE!

  1. Sweep: Classified by the train length extending 3-12 inches
  2. Chapel: Classified by the train length extending up to 24 inches
  3. Cathedral: Classified by the train length extending more than 24 inches (my dress, in the top picture, is an example of cathedral length)
I hope this weeks' post have been informative and helpful. Best of luck to all you brides!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Dress Week: Waistlines and Necklines

Waistlines and Necklines:

Here are waistline and neckline drawings and definitions that I made reference to in the last post regarding dressing for your shape.

Waistlines defined:
  1. Empire waist – waist seam falls just beneath the bust, where the under bust is measured.
  2. Dropped waist  - waist seam falls below the natural waistline, somewhere between high hip and low hip
  3. Dropped basque waist – waist seam falls in the same region as the dropped waist, but a basque waist is marked by the ‘V’ shaped seam line
  4. Dropped rounded basque waist – waist seam falls in the same region as the dropped waist, the ‘V’ shaped seam line is more subtle than the traditional basque waist
  5. Natural waist – waist seam falls at the natural waist, if unsure of placement refer to “body measurements” chart

Necklines defined:

  1. Boat or bateau – wide neck with a shallow dip
  2. ‘V’ – neckline forming a sharp ‘V’, straight lines
  3. Rounded ‘V’ – neckline forming a bowed ‘V’, curved lines
  4. Jewel – rounded neckline lying slightly below the bottom point of the hollow
  5. High jewel – rounded neckline at the base of the neck over the hollow
  6. Scoop – simple rounded neckline dipping lower than the jewel neckline
  7. Square – neckline in the shape of three sides of a square
  8. Sweetheart – neckline shaped like the top humps of a heart
  9. Cowl  - drapey, swaging, loose neckline
  10. Strapless (straight) – a bodice without straps or sleeves of any kind with a straight horizontal edge
  11. Crossed (or wrap) – wrapped across the body forming a ‘V’ neckline

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Dress Week: silhouettes


There are basically four different dress silhouettes, and yes, I can count. The fifth shown is princess or ballerina a variation of the ball gown.

When it comes to dress making and dress buying there are guides, but “rules” can be negotiated… slightly. My goal is to familiarize you with the silhouettes, necklines and waistlines that typically look best on your body type and help you understand why. Gaining awareness about your body type and how subtle differences in clothing choices greatly affect your overall physical appearance will help you become a more confident and efficient shopper even if you are not a bride. I have included drawings and definitions of silhouettes on this post, yet I have mentioned necklines and waistlines. I will present those in the next post.  

  1. Sheath: classified by a form fitting straight skirt

  1. Ball Gown: classified by a full skirt often silk or poly-satin places over a crinoline

  1. Princess: classified by a gathered waist and a very full skirt sometimes placed over a crinoline or made from tulle

  1. Mermaid (also known as trumpet): classified by a fitted skirt flaring from the knees to the floor

  1. A-line: classified by the waist to hem creating the shape of an “A”, gently flaring from the waist to the floor

Your best fit:

You are an Hourglass: For the most part you can wear all silhouettes. You are naturally balanced. Your goal is to match your top and bottom volume while remaining vertically in sync. A sheath dress with very minimal bust and sleeve detail will keep your top and bottom halves in equilibrium. For example, adding large rosettes and draping to the bust of a sheath dress will add too much volume to your voluptuous top half over minimizing your bottom half creating an imbalance. An A-line with a dropped waist can help minimize bustiness. Ball gown, princess and mermaid styles are all good options, but check the fit to avoid appearing squeezed out both ends from the middle. Show off your little waist with a fitted waistline that falls at your natural waist or slightly (very slightly) above - if you are trying to create length in the legs. Sweetheart necklines will flatter your chest, just be careful with the amount of flattery (let’s say Jessica Rabbit). Avoid empire waists that open directly into full skirts. This will over emphasize your bust while concealing some of your best assets.

You are a Pear: Your goal is to deemphasize the hips to achieve vertical balance. A-lines and ball gowns will be your friend. Accentuate the positive. Choose off-the-shoulder or strapless those pretty shoulders. Pears can carry wide necklines and shoulder emphasis well. Unless the “leg-of-mutton” 1980’s sleeves ever come back, let’s not worry much about shoulder emphasis. Princess seams work well on bodices and entire dresses. Fitted, embellished and darted waists are good bodice options.  Avoid mermaid and sheath styles.

You are a Rectangle: You are balance top to bottom, so let’s create some curves. Bring in the middle and widen the top and bottom. Ball gown/princess, mermaid, and a-line styles will all help create curves. Avoid any gathering or thickness at the waist and try adding belted waistlines and fitted waist panels for narrowing results. Add fullness to the bust with detailing such as ruching and draping. Full skirts and hip embellishments help create a curvier lower half. You may even want to look at lace dresses with a smooth (at waist) waistband. Take that a step further try a colored satin waistband…one that is darker than the dress color. Use caution with sheath dresses unless they have waist cinching features such as a belt and/or sleeve detail that helps broaden your shoulders out from your waist.

You are an Apple: Your goal is to emphasize the hips to achieve vertical balance. A-lines and ball gowns/princess silhouettes will help you achieve symmetry between your prominent shoulders and more narrow hips. A narrow deep ‘V’ or halter style neckline with a fitted bodice, a wrap style bodice, belting at the waist or a dropped basque waist will help elongate the torso and slenderize the shoulders by creating a more curvy appeal. Your shape creates an abundance of design freedom for hip detail. For example, if we were talking jeans (ooohhhh…cringe…and I hope we are not) a pair of jeans with more bulky flap pockets at the hips would be flattering on you. Since we are talking formal gowns take liberty in hip embellishments: large rosettes, swags, and pick-ups to name a few. *If you have a bit of a tummy use textured fabric, such as lace or ruching in the dress bodice. Avoid sheath dresses and blocky square tank or spaghetti strap necklines.   

You are Petite: I will caution petites on ball gown/princess styles. Consider your height – width ratio. If you are 5’ tall I would suggest a dress less than 5’ wide…just a thought. Go for a mermaid style with slight flaring at the bottom. Pear petites – take extra caution in avoiding mermaid styles to prevent turning your bottom half into the outline of a thrill ride. (Hey, as I said last post, I’m a petite “seasonal pear”…use caution)

You are Tall: Your statuesque frame can support heavy laces, larger prints and more substantial fabrics than shorter people. Steer clear of sheath styles with high necklines. Too much vertical draw could make you look gangly.

I would really love to write more and tell you all about how I have arrived at design decisions in the past, but this has been one overly busy week full of volunteer organization committee meetings, planting flowers, and overhauling the back yard!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Dress Week: measurements and body types

Measurements and Body Types:

I thought this would be a good place to start talking about the steps involved in finding a great wedding dress…or a great any dress for that matter. I believe anyone that wants to look great in their clothes should have a “realistic” idea of what their measurements might be at any given time. This is a good idea for a couple reasons. First, part of staying healthy is striving to achieve physical fitness. If you are not in your best shape measuring will give you a start marker. As you become more in shape and in better health you will have a physical representation of a job well done as your numbers and your thighs begin to shrink. Second, if you are in great shape or you just flat don’t care you should still know your measurements for fitting purposes. For example, let's say you want to order a dress online. You may want to check your measurements against their size chart to know what size to order. Also, if you know your measurements you can determine your body type. Often you can look in the mirror to determine your type, but sometimes it comes down to measuring.

I hate pulling out the tape on myself just as much as the next person, but because I know what my measurements should be and I know my bodies tendencies this is a good way to keep myself in check. For instance, I am an hourglass, but if lay-off the gym and eat too many of my cheesecakes over the holidays I tend to swing pear. So, I suppose it’s fair to say I am a seasonal fruit. There is nothing necessarily wrong with any body type. The whole point of knowing your body type is simply to achieve vertical balance helping you to look your best in your clothing.      

Most of my drawings I will feature this week are from a retail help manual I single-handedly created on my internship. The diagrams are informative and easy to follow so I will be working from them.
 (I will say I am not sure why the above croquis has exceptionally long arms for such a short torso, but I am sure you understand the points for measuring just the same.)

  • Hollow to hem: refers to measuring from the clavicle dip at the front base (middle not top or bottom) of the neck to the floor *Note: if you will be wearing heels with a floor length gown wear them when measuring.
  • Hollow to waist: measure from the hollow to the natural waist
  • Upper bust: measure around the body directly under the armpit and arching over the top of the bust
  • Full bust: measure around the body at the height of the fullest bust point
  • Under bust: measure directly under the bust around the rib cage
  • Natural waist: lies between the bust and the hips, below the ribs at the smallest circumference of the torso *Note: if unsure tie a ribbon around the waist area of the body and measure at the point where the ribbon falls.
  • High hip: located 3” down from the waist measurement
  • Low hip: located 7” down from the waist measurement or the fullest point of the hips

Now that you are familiar with measuring let’s look at the full bust, natural waist and low hip measurements to determine your bust/waist/hip ratio otherwise know as body type or shape.

There are really four basic body types with variables and degrees to each: Hourglass, Pear, Straight, and Apple.
  • Hourglass: (opposing triangles) defined by (basically) the same hip and bust measurements with a well defined smaller waist measurement. The hips and bust appear larger in comparison to the waist. This body type typically shows weight gains first in arms, chest, hips, and thighs.

  • Pear: (upward triangle) defined by a smaller bust measurement than hip measurement…just as the fruit, smaller on top and larger on bottom. This body type typically shows weight gains first in the hips and thighs. 

  • Straight (also known as banana or rectangle): (rectangle) defined by (basically) the same hip and bust measurements with a slightly smaller waist measurement. Typically 8” or less difference between the bust/hip measurement and the waist measurement. In a university study in 2005 more American women fit this category than any other single category. This body type typically shows weight gain evenly over the body.

  • Apple (also known as oval): (downward triangle) defined by larger shoulder, bust and waist measurements than hip measurements. Hips and legs tend to be noticeably slimmer than upper body. This body type typically shows weight gains first in arms, chest and tummy.

    • Inverted Triangle: (downward triangle) is really just a subcategory of Apple. Defined by broad shoulders, narrow hips and undefined waist.  

  • Petite: Under 5’ 4”

  • Tall: Over 5’ 8”

Determine your body type because I will cover choosing the best dress silhouettes for your body in the next post.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Welcome Wedding Season

Yes, this is me, the Dainty Domestress, pictured in my gown, my design and photographed by the very talented and very dear Kelly Beane.

Wedding Dress Week:

Ahhh, wedding season…to those of you not yet engaged it sounds like a dreamy fairytale full of forest animals that will appear on your window seal and stitch the perfect dress right in front of your eyes. To those currently engaged brides, right in the middle of planning…well…you are stressed out! So, let’s just try to get you through your wedding as simply and easily with a variety of tips and ideas to save money, choose the right dress, and throw a lovely wedding celebration. And, lastly to those of you who have already been through this grand gala we Americans call a wedding (myself included) we politely smile, offer our best advice (while not including our truly best advice…elope and have a huge reception later), and then remember all the money we are about to shell out on gifts this season.

While the next few week’s posts will be geared toward brides and weddings there will be plenty of beneficial take-away for everyone, no matter which of the three above categories you may fit.

I had a beautiful wedding; I cut costs at every corner and had a hand in every decision and design. This being said, I drove myself crazy! No one could talk me into eloping or a destination wedding either. But, I learned a lot from my experience. There are many things you can do yourself, but know your limits and abilities. Plan ahead. Long engagements are good. Consider what is most important to you. Is it the dress, the photography, the venue? Allot for that first in your budget. When your budget becomes sparse then decide what you can do yourself or with the help of some friends.

As an aside, I will say we actually took wedding pictures, including the one pictured at the top over three years after we were married. So if you are stressing about your pictures not turning out or not yet having a photographer, though you will never have the wedding and the moments back you may have a second chance at certain things…like really great pictures. It was worth the wait!

Another area brides tend to trip up in is THE DRESS! (Hopefully, not in the literal sense) This goes for anyone who will ever wear any dress in there future…decide on a dress that makes you look your best, not a great dress that wears you! Ok, I’m a bit of a wedding gown snob (as I should be). My degree is in apparel design. My internship was at a haute couture wedding gown design house. I am in my element here. I saved a considerable amount of money on my dress compared to what it would have cost in a boutique because I designed and ended up sewing most of  it myself (another long and dreadful seamstress story we won’t go into). But…I am not so unreasonable to think everyone can and will go out to purchase dresses for thousands of dollars. That was my priority element, after the dress (fabric, notions, and construction) the budget trickled down to other parts of the wedding.

This week I want to inform you on making smart dress choices for your body type and budget, and help acquaint you with silhouettes, trains, waistlines, necklines, measuring, and customarily appropriate wedding attire.

Also, I would like to apologize to those of you expecting a post last Friday. The whole blogger site was down Thursday while I was desperately trying to post and still down last Friday when I checked. Hopefully, this is all worked out because we have a big week ahead!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


Roses-Turn a Bud into a Bloom: 

I love ROSES! As I age I find myself slightly and slowly broadening my horizons, but it is unlikely I will ever grow out of my rose obsession. If you made the feather vase you may want to adorn it with roses as you saw I did in the last post. If you are a DIY bride as I was you may order your roses in bulk and may find this post helpful. 

Roses can be displayed so many lovely ways, but often I find I need them big and open now! Unfortunately flowers are so often a last minute thought or the last additions before guest arrive. I do not want to buy them too early given that flowers sometimes wilt quickly. I always intend to buy them the day before and leisurely arrange them, but I usually forget and end up racing my guests to my home to frantically stuff them in a vase. So what do I do when my guest will be here in an hour and my roses are all wadded up in tight little buds?

A couple quick fixes:

Blow with some force right down close to the top of the rose.

When it has begun to unfold work your fingers down into the petals ever-so-gently stretching and separating. That may be enough to open them to a satisfactory position. Additionally, cut the stems at an angle, and place them in slightly warm, clean water.

If this is not enough to do the trick, grab the hair drier. Don’t scald them down to their little rose hips just gently and gradually increase the heat and speed until you achieve your desired result.