So… it seemed an appropriate time to build this model last week. Because I built it to give to my wife. It was going to be a surprise Valentine’s gift, but then one of my kids came over and saw me working (most of the time my wife doesn’t end up over in the corner where my build desk is located), and said “You’re building a rose!” really loudly. So, yeah, it wasn’t so much of a surprise. Nevertheless, it was finally time to build it. Oh, and to explain the title, the Golden Rose can also be built in blue and red, but the model is still called the Golden Rose, which is kinda silly.

You can probably imagine how intimidated I was as I approached this model. That is a LOT of complex curves, and most of them are the kind that can’t really be described accurately in a set of flat 2D instructions. So, I was excited, because it’s one where everyone’s build is going to end up unique, and you can express yourself with your own custom choices… but I was also scared that it was so artistic that I wouldn’t be able to execute it well (I do not have creative artistic skills, without some base to work from or replicate).

As it turns out, I think I did a pretty good job. There’s a bit of unevenness in the gap between the tightly curled petals and the larger open petals that I wasn’t really happy with, but again… that’s something that only I will notice. Looking past that, this is one gorgeous model. And if you are curious how in the heck the leaves are attached, like I was, then I’ll help you out with that: the stem of the rose is several cylinders with screw thread between each section. The leaves (and the rose at the top) are secured by sliding the screw thread through holes in the model parts, and then tightening the next section down over the part. Pretty creative, right?

Of course, with all I’ve said, you’ll probably guess that this isn’t the easiest of models. And that’s true, but I think I made it harder on myself than it needed to be, as is usual for me. I spent a good bit of time shaping the leaves, of all things. Way more time than was probably merited, but I’m a masochist like that. However, despite the imprecise nature of the curves in the instructions, I do have a few things I would like to share, places where I got confused or tripped up. And I’ll tell you what I did with the leaves that probably wasn’t worth the effort.

First of all, I have to disagree with the instructions on the shaping of the first part. Even though it’s not a precise representation of the curves you’ll be making, I really feel like they have far exaggerated the amount to which you can curve the “lips” of the petals over. I tried to form them to the extent to which the instructions imply, but it did not go well. When trying to wrap it tight enough (because it does need to be tightly wrapped) it started turning into a triangular shape, rather than being round. I tried to round it out, then tighten up, then round it out, etc. I went through several repetitions before I decided that the true solution was to flatten out the lips almost completely so that it could be tightly wrapped. Of course, it could just be that I wrapped it too tight, but I wasn’t sure how tight to make it.

Here’s a note I almost forgot to share… when forming up the three 3-petal parts (2, 3, and 4), you’ll want to wait to fully curve them up from the center-rings (or be prepared to gently flatten them back out some) until you have gotten through step 5. I say this from experience, because I did curve them up fully, but when I got here, I had a lot of trouble aligning the tabs through their slots (and keeping them there) until I pushed the petals back down until they were “flat” to each other. After securing the tabs, I then folded the petals back upwards and curled them round each other to create the layered “cups” of petals.

The next bit of confusion came near the end, after I had finished forming most all of the parts. And it has to do with the rods that make up the stem. Because I got cocky and didn’t actually notice that they had 3 distinct lengths of rods that were numbered, I judged which segment to use based on how long it looked. And when I got to this step, I looked at the available rods and was confused – it seemed like I was missing a segment or something. Except I wasn’t… they just greatly shortchanged the length of the bottom-most segment of rod in the instructions. In the screenshot below I augmented the render with some additional length to make it more obvious that it’s the bottom / longest length of rod. lol.

And finally, the choice that made this take forever… I decided to try to form the leaves with more than just a simple curve. No, I decided they needed to have a “crease” down the middle of the leaf, following the stem as it went out to the tip of the leaf. Which is a good idea, and not that hard. The hard part was when I decided… why stop at the center stem, why not crease a little along all of the little structural arms branching off from that central stem-line. Yeah. But also, I still wanted to have the curve overall, right? Don’t be like me. Don’t be a masochist. It doesn’t turn out well enough for it to be worth it.

Anyhoo… that brought my full build time to just under 2 hours, which was sorta unfortunate, because I forgot to plug my laptop in while building, and the last few minutes of it ended up not being recorded due to power-saving mode when my laptop’s battery got too low. And yet, it somehow still wrote several minutes of black / blank video at the end. You know, when it was all coming together? Oh well, the rest of the build is still there… and can be watched in it’s glorious soundless normalcy below.