Tuesday, August 22

How to press flowers

A few years ago, I wrote this post and it still remains as one of the most asked questions around here: how does one press flowers. I decided to post it again as August is nearing its departure and petals are blooming all around - the perfect time for flower pressing!


Step 1. 
Ready your supplies & gather your flowers
Whether you want to press wild flowers, garden varieties, or a leftover bouquet, have your supplies ready. You'll need parchment paper (the kind you'd use for baking), scissors, and a hard covered book or flower press. You don't want to pick flowers after rainfall, my rule of thumb is at least one day of sunshine before I pick my flowers. Always forage midday (1-3pm), morning dew counts as a wet flower and evening flowers may be tired from the sun. You want happy & healthy flowers to press, pick your best blooms. 

Use scissors to gently cut your desired flower just below the petal.
Pulling from the top can add stress to the flower. Feel free to include stems and leaves too.
Step 2. 
Place parchment paper between two pages in a hard covered book or flower press
 You can use a hard covered book (example: dictionary) or an actual flower press for this step. I have used both with equal results. Open your book, place one piece of parchment paper on selected page, put your desired flower on top of it, press your flower down with your fingers and shape it to your liking, place second piece of parchment paper on top of flower and then close your book. You can add multiple pressings, as long as they are separated by parchment paper.
Step 3. 
Close your book and find a cool & dark hiding place to store it
Once you have actually pressed your flower, you'll need to wait four weeks before reintroducing it to sunlight. Find a dark hiding spot for your book such as underneath your bed or in your basement. Stack other hard covered books in between. This will ensure your pressing has time to dry and shape itself into a pretty pressed flower! The most difficult step of them all is trying not to peek.
 Step 4. 
Time to reveal your pressed flower
After four weeks of patiently waiting, it's finally time to see your pressed flower! Carefully open your book to the desired page and let the simple joy of a preserved flower consume you. You are now free to use your pressed flower in crafts, paintings, or as little love letters to the summertime.
Additional tips:

  • When picking your flower, make sure to check and see if any critters are living there. You don't want to intrude on the home of a ladybug or bumblebee. 
  •  Flat faced flowers are the easiest to press. If it's your first time pressing, try using flat petals like daisies or pansies. As you get more acquainted with the art of it all, you can try pressing more uniquely shaped flowers. Start small.
  • Flower presses can be ordered online, bought in store, or hand built. I found both of mine at Value Village.
  • Do not be discouraged if the pressed flower is unsettling or if it's not the image you wanted. These things take time before you can discover what works and what doesn't. Don't give up. Try another hard covered book, store it in a different location, pick a new kind of flower, try a different technique or type of wax paper.  
If you are lost or curious for more, ask me your questions in the comment section below this post. I will reply as soon as I can.

 Welcome to the wonderful world of flower pressing!

4 comments:

  1. Anonymous22.8.17

    beautiful . i love the way you press your flowers, so natural :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Awesome photos!

    www.bstylevoyage.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  3. I always loved pressing flowers and leaves when I was young. I don't do it so much anymore, but sometimes when I am flipping through a book, I come across one that was forgotten behind :)

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  4. So lovely! I pressed my first flowers this Summer. Waiting was the hardest part.

    ReplyDelete