i decided to try making some paper peonies based on a pin from rebecca caridad's blog manzanita. and they were a success... except i didnt have any strong enough wire to make stems. and a trip to the craft store ends in certain overspending.
a friend recommended using string or hemp and tying the flowers together in an oversized daisy chain type thing. again success!
even with a certain someone "helping"
apparently there was good stuff in the ole nose
basically i just braided 3 strands of hemp together and strung on a flower every now and then. originally i tried to stab holes through the base of the flowers, but way too many layers of tissue paper and not enough sharp needle with big eyes. instead i used a yarn embroidery needle and squished the thread through the middle of the flower, under the wire and between the layers. cake. continue braiding and fight the cat.
final product. i forgot to send it home with the birthday girl. fortunately she lives 3 blocks away.