Marianne Hansen’s magical paper flowers.

Marianne Hansen’s magical paper flowers.

There is just something so enchanting about flowers – they’re decorative, they’re beautiful, they smell amazing, but they also are so ephemeral, which makes them somewhat elusive to our material world. This is probably why there is such a long history of paper flowers, because it’s the perfect way to preserve something so fragile!

The earliest known construction of paper flowers has been traced back to China, where early forms of papyrus were cut and folded into beautiful blooms to be set off into the river during prayer rituals. This craft of creating blooms out of paper can also be traced back to South and Central America when Aztec and Mayan cultures used a paper-like tree bark to create ornamental flowers for celebrations and rituals. After the 16th century and the introduction of milled paper, the art began to flourish into more intricate designs and colors. Today, it’s one of Mexico’s most beloved folk arts, and the constructions are just stunning.

With my love of constructed flowers, it’s no wonder that I completely fell for the work of one designer in particular who is bringing this craft into the contemporary scene. One of the most amazing things about Marianne Eriksen Scott-Hansen’s designs is that they are all hand cut tissue paper! Now, you’re probably thinking of those tissue-paper flowers that come home crinkled in backpacks on Mother’s Day, but these creations are not your Kindergartener’s arts-and-crafts project. Far from it. These creations are truly amazing.

_MESH studio
Marianne in her studio. Here you can get a sense of the scale of her work! Fabulous.
The color, texture and details in her work is unparalleled!

The Danish designer has been working on her hand-cut floral-installations for years, but it wasn’t until recently that she brought her craft to the forefront, working with brands like Royal Copenhagen, the Elle Style Awards, L’Oréal Paris, Jane Kønig and others, to create large-scale installations for events, storefronts, and photo shoots.

I came across her “paper couture” on Instagram, and could not get over how amazing they are! I love how these oversized floral installations are delicate, yet bursting with color and texture. Traditionally trained at the The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, Marianne began her career working in fashion, before moving into a line of cut-out accessories. From there she began transitioning to the paper-cut installations, which have since gained lots of attention for their eye-catching colors and shapes.


_MESH feet
Her life-sized installations en route! Love it.
One of her fantastic window displays.
_MESH vertical detail
More of her gorgeous work close-up. I want to lie down in it, don’t you?

I love how this technique of hand cutting and folding and styling has transformed throughout her work, from her previous fashion designs, to these amazing over-the-top installations. Each piece is uniquely conceptualized in the studio, then cut and arranged completely by hand from stacks and stacks of different colored tissue papers. There are no computer programs, no lasercutters, making this is truly a hand-made art. How wonderful that you could be surrounded by these amazing floral arrangements that never wilt or crumple! Just marvelous!