To do: Press flowers like daisies, marigolds, leaves and stems between the pages of a heavy book
Time: 30 minutes to press, 3-4 weeks to dry
Materials: Non-bulky colorful flowers, paper, heavy book or flower press
“Pressing flowers” simply refers to the process of flattening and drying flowers to frame as artwork, use in crafts like bookmarks, or add to a drawing for a realistic touch!
While it does take a while to let the flowers dry (3-4 weeks) this is a great spring activity to try with your child. Practice patience and your results will pay off!
WikiHow recommends using flowers with “naturally flat faces, such as pansies, violets, or apple blossoms.” Orchids or roses for example are rather bulky and don’t press well unless you deconstruct them first. Feel free to experiment!
How to Press Flowers
Once you’ve found a few flowers, stems, and leaves you’d like to press, make sure they are 100% dry, otherwise they can mold. Find a heavy book like a phone book or encyclopedia that you don’t mind getting a bit wrinkled (the moisture from the flowers can slightly damage pages).
Open the book to the center. Line the left hand page with a piece of paper. The paper will help soak up any moisture!
The fun part! Arrange your flowers how you want them to appear dried, for example, the flower in the center, a few leaves or stems to either side, or multiple flowers in a pattern.
Place another piece of “blotter” paper over your arrangement and carefully close the book so as to not disturb the flowers. Place some more heavy books on top of your book with flowers inside. Every 5 days or so, check on the blotter paper and replace to avoid molding.
After 3-4 weeks, your flower should be ready! Handle very carefully as the flower is extremely delicate; consider using tweezers to move it.
Try using your dried flowers for craft projects:
– Find a small “shadow box” frame with two glass sides, or a regular frame with a mat backing. Arrange your flowers in the frame and display in your home!
– Make decorative vases by applying “mod podge” to the outside of a glass canning jar or vase, layer your flowers around the exterior, and finish with another layer of mod podge. Wait until it dries completely and use to display fresh flowers!
– Use dried flowers as an addition to drawing or painting. Decide where you’d like the flower to be, apply some glue stick to the paper, and carefully press your flowers into the glue!
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