Last month I began a blog series on drying and pressing flowers for use in your paperweight designs and other craft projects. Now that I've covered drying flowers with silica gel (Six Easy Steps to Creating Beautiful, Dried Flowers) it's time to move on to pressing flowers.
There are many different kinds of flower presses on the market that you can use. My press of choice is a big, heavy book. Practically everyone owns one. If you're among the few who don't, you should be able to find one at a local thrift store for a dollar or two.
Here's what you'll need:
Gift tissue (preferably white or kraft)
Large "coffee table" book
Thick, heavy book
A few sheets of regular printer paper
Step One: Arrange the flowers and leaves you'd like to press on a few sheets of gift tissue (preferably white or kraft). They should be spaced apart and cover an area no larger than the "coffee table" book you'll be using.
Step 2: Cover the flowers with two more sheets of gift tissue.
Step 3: Gently place your "coffee table" book over the flowers and allow the book to settle as much as possible. Don't apply force because this may crush and damage the flowers and leaves.
Leave the book in place for at least a day.
When you remove the book, the flowers will be partially dried and free of surface moisture.
Step 4: Fold a piece of waxed paper and sheet of plain printer paper in half. (The printer paper should be on the outside to protect the pages of the book from moisture). Arrange flowers and leaves of similar thickness on the waxed paper, making sure to leave space between each clipping.
Step 5: Fold the waxed paper and printer paper over to cover the flowers.
Step 6: You can place more than one layer of dried flowers in the same book. Just be sure there are 100 or so pages between your pressings. Once the book is full, set it aside and place something heavy on top of it. You can use another large book, a couple bricks from your garden, or whatever else you may have around your home.
This is where patience comes into play. You should leave your pressings undisturbed for at least two weeks.
There you have it! Six easy steps to pressing flowers.
Storage Tips: After you've removed the pressed flowers from the waxed paper, place them on a flat tray or cookie sheet if you plan to use them soon. For long-term storage, you can keep your pressings in shallow, air-tight containers or between sheets of printer paper within the pages of a book.
Pressed flowers from your garden or florist can be used to create stunning paperweights that will bring a colorful touch of nature to your desk. We hope you'll visit our blog again soon as we show you how to capture pressed flowers in a variety of paperweight designs.