What better way to celebrate Mother’s Day than to surround yourself and the mothers in your life with fresh flowers! Gather up the moms in your life (and those who appreciate them!) for an afternoon filled with fragrant blooms and pretty petals. In this hands-on application the life and colors of the flowers are pressed between paper, leaving a delicate vignette. Keeping things free-flowing and natural will draw you in a good direction. Think of a meadow, a bouquet, or your favorite stall at the Farmer’s Market. Capturing an arrangement you create and turning it into a piece of art you can gift (to mom!) or look back on will remind you of quality time spent together while making something beautiful, creative, and fun.
1. Begin by collecting your flowers. Look for fully developed, open blooms. You want blossoms that have good definition and won’t clump when pressed. Strip the flowers of any unwanted leaves by lightly pinching, then running your fingers along the stems.
2. Trim a piece of cardboard to match the size of your book. Trim a piece of newspaper and a piece of tissue paper to match the cardboard. Place the newspaper on top of the cardboard and lay the tissue paper over top.
3. Here comes the fun part! You have many options, but keeping in mind the finished look will help you plan successfully. A few paths you can take:
-Remove the petals and scatter them all over
-Place flower faces flat and open (sunflowers are good for this) Note that the centers/stamens of some flowers may expand and change when pressed.
-Lay delicate flower faces close together in a line of staggering heights.
Let your creative juices flow as you create your flower vignette!
1. Once you’ve decided on your flower plan, carefully lay your flowers on the tissue paper, making sure petals are turned up and removing or replacing any bruised pieces. Trim any overhanging pieces and cover with another piece of tissue paper, followed by newspaper and another piece of cardboard.
2. Place your books over top. Now comes the hard part. It’s time to be patient. It will take two to four weeks for the flowers to dry. You may feel like you are sitting on your hands but try not to sneak a peek as this is prime time for ripping if disturbed.
3. After two weeks, carefully take a peek at your pressing. Lift the books off one by one and remove layers until you reach the flowers. If the moisture is gone and the flowers are dry, they are ready to be transferred to their final destination. Pressed flowers may be framed or carefully transferred to a glass plate.
Enjoy your homemade artwork or gift to mom as a reminder of the day you spent together. She’ll take heart thinking back on the time you shared. Knowing these flowers were grown by you makes the day just a little more special.
Notes on Flower Selection:
*Certain flowers maintain color and shape more than others. Remember to pay attention to the flower’s stamen and remove if you prefer a cleaner look.
Borage: Leave more defined shapes.
Marigolds/Calendulas: Rich color transfer. Bulkier varieties are better when pressed as petals.
Nasturtiums: Rich color transfer.
Sunflowers: Rich color transfer, good for petals and leave more defined shapes.
Petunias: Rich color transfer.
Lavender: If a bulky bloom, petals are best.
Chamomile: Leave more defined shapes.
Torenia: Rich color transfer.