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Paper Rose Bouquet

Jill Howarth is an illustrator who continues to inspire the Gebert girls with her precious board books that never fail to bring smiles to our faces. When I realized my two and a half year old would benefit from extra counting practice, we fell in love with 123 You Love Me. The sweet illustrations inspired a fast and easy paper rose bouquet project that reinforces counting, gluing and swirling paint. It was easy enough for my two and half year old and engaging enough that my 4 year old wanted in on the fun too!

Check out the video tutorial here:


I like how the book reinforces counting from 1-12 to start introducing those tricky numbers following 10 without being too overwhelming for the little ones.

Each page makes counting way more fun with the beautiful illustrations that really pop. It’s engaging for the little ones and for me to read. Finishing the book with the dozen roses bouquet made for an easy transition to making our own rose bouquets, which make perfect Valentine’s Day gifts for loved ones by the way.


Here is what we used:

  • 12″ x 18″ purple paper
  • Strips of green painted paper (plain green paper works too)
  • 12 pre-cut circles of dark and light red and pink circles for the roses
  • Pink or red pre-cut heart
  • Swirling texture tool (we have one from this pack of painting tools)
  • Glue sticks and liquid glue for the tulle
  • Liquid tempera paint (white or super light purple by mixing a little purple into white)
  • Sparkly pink or red tulle for a bow


  1. Glue stems starting at the bottom of the page and fanning out toward the edges.
  2. Glue the circles at the top of the stems. I used the glue stick for these so my two and half year old could do the gluing herself.

3. Dip the texture tool into the white or light purple paint and swirl the paint onto the circles to make them look like roses.

4. Glue heart shape over the stems and top with a tulle bow secured with liquid glue.

My two year old loved this project, but it’s also great for ages 3-6! I love projects that I can do with different age groups.

If you enjoyed this book and/or story time project, please tag us on Instagram: @picturebooksandpeonies or #picturebooksandpeonies


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