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Pressing Flowers - a guide



I cant be the only one who occasionally opens a hardback book to find a reminant of yonder years, an abundance of colours, shapes and textures the form of dried flowers.

Pressed flowers allow us keep the perfection of summer a little longer, as offering an attractive and delicate touch to various crafts, from scrapbooking, to card making, to home décor.

The pressing process

  • Harvesting: Choose fresh flowers with vibrant colours. Select blossoms that are not too large or too thick, as they may take longer to dry.

  • Preparation: Remove excess moisture from the flowers by gently blotting them with a clean cloth. Trim the stems close to the base of the flowers, making them easier to handle.

  • Pressing: Place the flowers between layers of paper, and then sandwich them between heavy books or press them using a flower press. Apply gentle and even pressure to flatten the flowers, allowing them to dry evenly.

Types of paper

Choosing the right paper for pressing flowers is essential. You want the paper to assist in removing any moisture from your flowers, due to this you want to stay far away from anything waxed as that will lock moisture in. My favourite is this parchment paper from Bertsuk*

Pros

Cons

Blotting Paper

- Absorbs moisture efficiently, facilitating faster drying. - Smooth texture prevents flower petals from sticking. - Available in various sizes, making it suitable for different projects.

- Can be relatively expensive compared to other options. - May leave imprints or patterns on delicate flower petals if not handled carefully.

Tissue Paper

- Lightweight and easily accessible. - Gentle texture minimizes the risk of damaging fragile flowers. - Offers flexibility and can be folded as needed.

- Less effective at absorbing moisture, leading to longer drying times. - Tissue fibers may stick to the flowers during pressing. - Requires additional layers for efficient moisture removal.

Parchment Paper

- Widely available and affordable. - Smooth surface minimizes the risk of petal damage. - Offers excellent moisture absorption, aiding in quicker drying.

- Some parchment papers may have a wax coating, which can cause petals to stick. - May leave slight imprints on flower petals. - Less flexible compared to other papers, limiting sizing options.

Newspaper

- Easily accessible and cost-effective. - Absorbs moisture well, aiding in the drying process. - Offers a rustic and vintage look to pressed flowers.

- The ink from the newspaper may transfer onto the flower petals, potentially altering their natural colour. (this could be a positive though!) - The rough texture of the paper may cause the petals to stick and become damaged. - The quality of the paper varies, and some newspapers may be too thin, resulting in longer drying times.



How to achieve success with your flower pressing

  • Allow sufficient drying time, typically around 1-3 weeks, depending on the flower's moisture content and thickness. (The warmer the weather the faster your flowers will dry too!)

  • Ensure the flowers are completely dry before removing them from the paper to prevent mold or discoloration.

  • Store pressed flowers in airtight containers away from direct sunlight and humidity to maintain their color and shape.

And that's it. So pop into your garden, gather your favourite blooms and get pressing!


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