I’m not handy with power tools. In fact, I’m more uncomfortable with them than anything else. Fortunately I married someone who uses power tools like they’re extra appendages. Drilling, sawing, and sanding are second nature to him. Consequently, I drag him into projects on a fairly regular basis taking advantage of his skills with power tools.
The other day our daughter was home visiting and I had my flower press out removing camellias from a recent trip to southern Georgia. She remarked on the stencils painted on the top piece of wood, remembering when she had done them years ago. She said she’d like a flower press of her own and thoughts of a fun weekend project came to mind.
A simple idea, but the construction of a flower press requires a little bit of thought and planning. Portability is a primary consideration if you’re planning to tuck one in the trunk of the car for day trips or vacations. 8” x 8” squares cut from 3/4” birch plywood make a convenient size and weight for travel.
Another thing to consider is the size of the holes. The holes for the round head carriage bolts should be slightly larger than the bolts so they slide in and out easily.
Inside the press put multiple layers of newspaper and blotting paper cut to size. Paper from a sketch pad, instead of blotting paper, works too. Allow 3 weeks for the material you’re pressing to dry completely, adjusting down the wing nuts as the material dries.
Pressing flowers is an easy way to chronicle memories and preserve bits of nature from all the places you go; a handmade flower press with a personalized front makes it all the more meaningful.
Feeling crafty this weekend? Visit our giveaway and you could be loading up on supplies for the next project on your list.
text and photos by Ann D. Travers