Fun Flower Press

Summer is the perfect time to press and dry flowers. Making a homemade flower press is a great project for children, as it's fun, simple and inspiring to young Good Gardeners. Creating custom note cards, frames and even jewelry from pressed summer flowers are the rewards. This time of year blooms that press well are abundant. Try blossoms of cosmos, pansies, violas, daisies, asters, rudebeckia, hydrangea, even herbs and colorful greenery. Flowers and foliages that press supremely are ones that are actually more delicate and not bulky. It takes about 7 to 10 days to press and dry most flowers.

My best,

Pressing Flowers
Materials
  • Two 12-inch x 12-inch pieces of ½ -inch plywood 

  • Four 3-inch or 3.5-inch long ¼-inch 'hex head' bolts 

  • Eight ¼-inch 'wrought' washers 

  • Four ¼-inch wing nuts 

  • Electric drill with 5/16-inch drill bit (a 5/16 drill bit makes taking the bolts in and out of the flower press very easy) 

  • Four large and strong rubber bands, (rubber bands from the daily newspaper work well) 

  • Four scrap pieces of 12-inch x 12-inch cardboard 

  • Four pieces of 8 ½-inch x 11-inch construction or computer paper 

  • Pencil, ruler and sharp scissors

Directions (Kids can help out!)
  1. Rubber band the two pieces of plywood together, 2 rubber bands in each direction. Make sure the pieces of plywood feel like they are strapped tightly together. 

  2. With a ruler and pencil measure and mark 1-inch in from each corner of the plywood. 

  3. Drill holes in the places marked. The drill must go through both pieces of plywood. (Have an adult drill or supervise the drilling of young Good Gardeners.) After drilling remove the rubber bands. 

  4. Cut the corners off the four pieces of 12-inch x 12-inch cardboard so that they fit easily inside the two pieces of drilled plywood. At this time cut the construction or computer paper to size so that it fits neatly within the flower press and on top of the cardboard. The paper is what you'll set all those pretty blooms on. 

  5. Place one washer on each bolt. Insert the bolts up through the bottom piece of plywood. Place one piece of cardboard on top of the bottom piece of plywood. On top of the cardboard place a piece of construction or computer paper. Continue this pattern until all the cardboard and paper is used up. 

  6. Finally, set the second piece of plywood on top of the stack of cardboard and paper and through the four bolts. Fasten the press with the washers and wing nuts.

Gather your favorite flowers and set them on the construction or computer paper. (You can either remove the stems from the flowers or leave them on.) Then place a piece of cardboard on top of each piece of paper and on the flowers. Tighten the bolts on the flower press until the wing nuts are nearly impossible to tighten further. Remember, one week to 10 days is the time it takes to press and dry most flowers.

  • Purchase plain or colored stationary or make your own stationary with construction paper. The pressed and dried blooms can be easily adhered with white glue or rubber cement. It might be nice to neatly label the variety of each bloom. Adding pressed greenery around the flowers may make a nice impact too. 

  • Try adorning a simple picture frame with pressed flowers. White glue is recommended. 

  • Gluing pressed flowers onto a 1-inch wide ribbon can create a beautiful and unique necklace. Rubber cement glue works best for this project. Tie the ribbon around your neck and presto, you've made a fun piece of original jewelry.

Note: Making a homemade flower press means a trip to the lumber or hardware store

Custom Pressed Flower Crafts