Learn how to dry press flowers using the best techniques so that your flowers will last for a long time.
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What is dry pressing?
Dry pressing is a method of flower preservation that allows you to create permanent flowers for use in crafts and artwork. The process involves pressing the flowers between two absorbent sheets, such as tissue paper or blotter paper, and then applying pressure to extract the moisture. Once the flowers are dry, they can be pressed into another sheet of paper or fabric to create a variety of decorative items.
Dry pressing is a simple way to preserve the natural beauty of flowers, and it’s a great project for both kids and adults. It’s also an inexpensive way to decorate your home or office with fresh-looking flowers that will never wilt or fade.
Here’s everything you need to know about how to dry press flowers, including a step-by-step guide to the process.
What You Need
-Fresh flowers (try to select blooms that are not fully open)
-Pressing pads (blotter paper or tissue paper work well)
-Heavy books or other objects for weight
-Optional: Frame, mat board, or other materials for creating finished art
Supplies you will need
1. Begin by finding flowers that are flat with minimal petals. Flowers that are too bushy will not press well. Magnolia blossoms, baby’s breath, roses, and daisies are all good choices for pressing.
2. Collect your pressed flowers and a few heavy books. Place the flowers between two sheets of paper towel, then close the book. Repeat this process until all your flowers are pressed.
3. To speed up the drying process, you can place the books with pressed flowers under a warm lamp or in a sunny spot. Check on your flowers every few days to make sure they are drying evenly. Once they are dry, they will be fragile, so handle them carefully.
4. To preserve your pressed flowers, you can glue them to a piece of cardboard or mount them on plywood
Picking your flowers
When you’re ready to pick your flowers, choose blooms that are just starting to open. You want them to be flat, not 3D. Cut the stems at an angle so they can absorb water more easily, then put them immediately into a jar or vase of fresh water.
Gently rinse any dirt off the flowers, then pat them dry with a soft towel. If you have time, let them sit out of direct sunlight for a few hours so they can start to open up. This will help them lay flat when you press them.
The pressing process
The pressing process is pretty simple: all you need is a heavy book, some absorbent paper like parchment or wax paper, and your flowers. You’ll want to start by gently removing any excess moisture from your blooms by lightly shaking them or patting them with a towel. Once they’re dry, lay a piece of absorbent paper on top of an open page in your book, and arrange your flowers on top of the paper. Make sure that they’re not touching each other, or they may stick together as they dry. Close the book, and use something heavy to weigh it down—like another book!—and let it sit for two to three weeks.
Tips for success
Before you begin, it’s important to understand that not all flowers are going to dry well. flowers with a high water content, such as tulips, won’t dry evenly and will likely wilt before they’re completely pressed. Flowers with a lot of petals, such as roses, will likely shrink after being pressed and may not lay flat. And some flowers, like daisies, have such a delicate structure that they’ll lose their shape completely. With that in mind, here are some tips for success:
– Choose flowers that are just beginning to open. If they’re fully open, they’ll wilt quickly; if they’re not open at all, they won’t press well.
– Avoid using flowers that have been treated with pesticides or other chemicals.
– If you’re using a flowerpress, make sure the petals are thin so they’ll dry evenly.
– Place the flowers between two sheets of parchment paper or wax paper and then press them in a heavy book overnight.
Framing your pressed flowers
After your flowers have been pressed, it’s time to think about how you want to display them. You can frame your pressed flowers, mount them on a piece of cardstock or even make them into a scrapbook decoration.
If you decide to frame your pressed flowers, you’ll need to choose a frame that will compliment the size and shape of your pressed flowers. It’s also important to consider the background color of the frame and whether it will clash with the colors of your flowers.
Once you’ve chosen a frame, you can start to assemble your pressed flowers. Begin by placing the larger flowers at the bottom of the frame and work your way up, filling in any gaps with smaller leaves and stems. Once you’re happy with the arrangement, use a glue stick or clear tape to secure the flowers in place.
If you want to add a personal touch to your frame, you could include a handwritten message or quote underneath your pressed flowers. Alternatively, you could create a title for your display using pretty much anything — from pebbles and leaves to buttons and beads. Get creative!