Summer is such a fun time to connect with nature. Sometimes we don't even realize how many flowers are out there blooming wildy until you go outside with a basket and roam around the yard or take a stroll down a dirt road.
If you're wanting to play with flower pressing here are a few tips and ideas for you to get started.
Recommended tools for flower pressing:
• Flower press (go here if you don't have one)
• Old hard cover book (don't pick one that means a lot to you as it will likely get damaged).
• Something heavy if you're using a book. Brick, weight or a few more heavy books will do the trick!
• Regular printer paper, card stock or parchment paper,
• Scissors for cutting flowers and removing stems
• Basket for collecting flowers
Take a walk in nature with a basket, scissors or garden clippers and see how many different blooms and interesting pieces of greenery you can find... nothing is off limits! herbs, wildflowers, weeds, ferns and leaves are all beautiful pressed!
If you're just learning I recommend pressing smaller flowers that are freshly picked from the garden. Wilted, old or damaged petals will not likely preserve well.
Here are a few things I found around my yard that are perfect for pressing:
roses, geraniums, columbine, phlox, lupins, and buttercups, ferns.
Pressing thick flowers like dahlias, peonies or roses can be more complicated, so it's best to focus on thinner blossoms as you learn. If you are pressing thicker flowers you can remove the petals and press pieces individually to prevent mold and browning.
PRO-TIP - Make sure each layer of your press or book contains flowers of the same thickness for even pressure distribution during the dying process.
Arrange your flowers face down on the absorbent paper, leaving some space between each flower. Keep in mind that the flowers will need more space a bit when pressed flat.
Carefully place another layer of absorbent paper on top of your flowers, followed by more cardboard and then more blotting paper. Once the layers are in place, try not to disturb them as it can affect the arrangement of the flowers.
• Include foliage or greens or grasses for texture. A beautiful pressed flower arrangement typically incorporates both flowers, filler and greenery.
• Once all the layers are in place, secure your press tightly or keep weight on the book, store your flowers in a cool, dry place. If using a press, after a few days you may need to tighten the screws a bit more as your flowers settle.
• Keep the flowers pressing for two-three weeks or until they are completely dry.
Have fun experimenting with different plants such as grasses or herbs. Start observing plants for their unique properties and textures, and enjoy the process of pressing and preserving them for your future scrapbooking, art and craft projects.
My main advice is not to feel intimidated and know that not every flower will turn out every single time. Have fun and enjoy the process!!
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