A Simple Guide to Flower Pressing
The simplest of crafts but creates the most beautiful of impacts.
Flower pressing is one of my favourite hobbies and something I’ve been doing since childhood. It’s something you can do using the tools from your own house, garden or local park and is a wholesome way to pass the time.
Why not get started this Bank Holiday weekend and create some beautiful homemade cards, or even your own herbarium of the plants growing in your garden? Spring is a great time to get started whilst everything is in full bloom, so let's get cracking!
What you’ll need:
A selection of flowers picked during their prime (that you have permission to do so!)
A flower press or an old, heavy book
Some blotting paper or newspaper
Take your chosen flowers or plants and check there’s no bugs hiding inside any of the stems or leaves
Place them on your blotting paper / newspaper in the middle page of your heavy book or centre of your flower press, trying to lay them as flat as possible – ideally press them on the same day as picking
Close your flower press and tighten the screws, or close your book and add some heavier books on top
Store at room temperature, in a dry position for around 2 weeks for best results
Once your flowers are dry, carefully remove them. They will be extremely delicate so be as light as you can – I’ll often use some tweezers to pick up from the stems to help protect them during this stage
Add them to your crafts and enjoy! I use them for adding to bookmarks, greetings cards or even framing
A few things to consider:
Not all flowers press well. Some flowers (such as bluebells for example) can take a while to dry and can end up going mouldy in the process. Bulky flowers will also press badly, as the weight will distribute unevenly and as such certain points won’t flatten. Something like a rose, for example, I would avoid pressing (and try drying instead) as the results will likely be disappointing. In these instances, try removing a few of the petals and press those individually instead if you would really like to include these flowers in your crafts.
Be sensitive to nature and try to follow the ‘1 in 20’ rule – this means that if there are 20 or so plants around of the same species, it’s generally okay to pick one as this will allow the plants to continue to thrive. Always pick in moderation!
Flower pressing is a little bit of trial and error – you’ll learn as you go along which ones press best and which ones to avoid. It’s an enjoyable pastime and results vary each time you do it, so there’s always a sense of anticipation and excitement for the big reveal. It’s a great way for kids to get involved with nature and crafting as well!