Pressing flowers

Friday, July 08, 2016

Pressing flowers in summer
Pressing flowers in summer
This year I felt a yearning to press flowers; to preserve them in time from their very peak of splendour. This cheap and cheerful flower press was a charity shop by from a while ago. I presumed it had been unused but some of the sheets were a little less than perfect which annoyed me a little but I suppose I should have checked. I'm unfamiliar with blotting paper aside from reading about it in Enid Blyton's books as a child. 
The garden itself didn't appear to have all that much to offer in terms of flowers on initial appraisal but I took my time, carried my little trug and scissors an set about finding two of each flower in perfect condition.
Pressing flowers in summer
The most obvious thing I tried to remember was that they needed to be fairly flat flowers. Upon closer inspection of the hypericum flowers I noted that the central nobbly bit would be problematic. So I cut it off and hoped for the best.
These cistus 'rock rose' has the most amazingly paper thin, delicate flowers. I'm suspecting these may perhaps be too delicate to survive a pressing but let's wait and see.
Pressing flowers in summer
After a while of gently collecting two flowers of each kind, I was thrilled with the collection I saw before me; such pretty colours and so many shapes. All those perfect little tokens of joy.
You notice that I have marigolds in the basket, but it became apparent that they had no intention of being pressed. (I shredded one in the course of essential trimming, so the other was popped in a tiny vase of water where it's still going strong six days later, so not a total waste). I saw some fuchsias on an adjacent bush so I borrowed two. I have no idea how well each one of these may work, so it is a complete leap into the unknown. But I'll know for next year.
Pressing flowers in summer
In accordance with the minimal instructions on the press, I picked the flowers when they were dry and laid them face down on the blotting paper, carefully trimming down the stalks as much as possible. I had enough for two sheets, the second would have been full if I could find a second perfect pale pink begonia but it wasn't to be.
Pressing flowers in summer
I have a few more layers I could add to as and when I find more flowers but for now I have tightened up the press and put it in the airing cupboard. Tightening the screws a little more this week before leaving it around 3 weeks before unveiling the results. I have to say, this was such a lovely thing to do. If you don't have a press, you can use heavy books instead. A lovely way to spend a little while on a sunny day.
Sophie

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10 comments

  1. If you can't find blotting paper you can use vileda kitchen cloth. The sort which is like thin felt. Do not use regular kitchen towel or any fabric with an obvious weave. These will leave imprints on the petals. You are wise to trim away lumpy centres. Sometimes it works well to trim away green sepals from the underside of the flowers. Have fun! Summer blessings x

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  2. Look forward to seeing the results.

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  3. I had a press very much like this when I was little. Used to press anything and everything! Looking forward to seeing the results. What are you going to do with them when done?

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  4. Your posts,and photos,are beautiful Sophie,thank you for sharing them x

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  5. Your posts,and photos,are beautiful Sophie,thank you for sharing them x

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  6. I had one these and I made the mistake of letting some petals touch so they discoloured. I did make pretty cards with them though
    Your flowers you chose are incredible!!! Sooo pretty!!!! I love those pink ones, what joy!!

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  7. I love the range of colours you have chosen. I have been known to press flowers in books but never do anything this extensive.

    http://lizziedailyblog.blogspot.com

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  8. Ah I used to have a flower press but my clumsy ten-year-old's efforts were not pretty! I hope these turn out well for you as your flowers are beautiful, I look forward to seeing what you do with them x

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  9. Ahhh, brilliant! I definitely need to get a flower press as I've been using lots of heavy books one on top of the other recently, but this is much better, and the flowers you picked are gorgeous. Can't wait to see how they turn out for you - do you have anything planned for them once they've been pressed? - Tasha

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  10. Beautiful Sophie. Very you. Very apt. <3 x x x

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Sometimes I am sent items to feature as part of a post and these will be clearly mentioned as part of each post.Everything else is bought by myself. Any sponsored or collaboration posts will be clearly marked. Each post is my own content and all opinions are honest.