How to Press Flowers

I love how imperfectly delicate a pressed flower is, whether it has the odd tear in the petal or develops new colours in the process, it’s the unknown that makes it such an interesting craft. However there are a few do’s and don’ts to ensure a successful outcome. 

 

Flowers
I started out pressing wild flowers which are smaller and softer by nature, making them a lot easier to flatten. I need to be able to scan these for my designs, ensuring the entire flower is in focus for best results. If you’re looking to frame your florals it’s best to pick flowers that are easily flattened too.

  • Pick flowers with a flat face
  • Remove them from water for a few hours prior to pressing. You want these to be freshly bloomed but also dry enough so that they don’t grow mould or damp whilst being pressed. 
  • Remove any lower leaves 

 

Pressed-Flowers.jpg

 

Paper
You will need paper that absorbs moisture and isn’t textured in any way. I once used a cardboard that had a grooved texture and it ruined the whole batch! Blotting paper is best for this, along with a flat cardboard if you’re using a traditional flower press. 

 

Using an Iron
I actually tried this method first before committing to buying a press. It’s great if you want quick results, but the only thing that’s missing is the almost antique colours you get from using a press, which I really love. 

  • Flatten the flowers using two pieces of blotting paper, and place books on top
  • Leave these to flatten naturally for at least 20 minutes
  • Remove water from the iron
  • Put the iron on a low setting
  • Press the iron over each section on the sheet of paper, holding for about 15 seconds. Repeat on each area of the paper. 

 

Using Books
This is definitiely the easiest way to press flowers, however the moisture from the plants will most likely damage your books so use one you don’t mind being ruined! 

  • Place the flowers between two sheets of blotting paper
  • Place within the pages of the book
  • After closing the book, stack pretty much the heaviest thing you have on top! 
  • Do not disturb the flowers
  • Carefully peel the flowers out after 3 weeks 

 

Using a Flower Press
My favourite method! It’s crazy how much better the flowers come out. I use a press I bought from amazon UK, and have also used another from an Etsy Seller in the US. 

  • Place the flowers between two sheets of blotting paper
  • Use Cardboard on either side of the blotting paper 
  • Layer these up so that they go cardboard, paper, flower, paper, cardboard, paper, flower, paper, cardboard, etc!
  • Press for 3-4 weeks

 

Once you've pressed your flowers, there's a lot you can do such as frame them, scan them, or put them into a scrapbook. I particularly love Mr Studio London, who have a garden full of flowers to press which they then make into framed artworks and cards. 

 

pressed-flower-cards-9-900.jpg

Anna xxx