Thursday, November 8, 2012

DIY Flower Press

A great project for children and adults is making a flower press.  It is very easy and simple, and even after you are done you can still continue to use it to make other things like nature collages or just use it to preserve fall leaves and spring flowers.

To do this you will need:

  • 2- 6 inch squares of ½ inch thick wood (I got a 2 by 2 foot piece of oak at Lowes for $8 and then cut it into 6 inch squares)
  • 2- 6 inch squares of cardboard with the corners cut off
  • 2- 6 inch squares of wax paper or blotting paper with the corners cut off
  • 4- 2 inch machine bolts (1/4 inch 20, 2 inches long)
  • 4- wing nuts that fit the machine bolts (1/4 inch 20)
  • Drill for making a few holes with 3/8 inch drill bit
  • Sandpaper
  1. Take your 6 inch squares of wood and drill a hole using a 3/8 inch drill bit into each corner.  Make them about 3/4 away from each side.  Make sure your bolts fit through these before you put the drill away.
  2. Once the holes are in place, match up the cardboard and the paper inside the two pieces of wood and cut the corners off the squares so that they do not cover the holes. 
  3. Sand the edges and round the corners to the wood.  You will also need to sand where the holes were drilled.  Wipe off the wood dust. 
  4. The layers for the flower press should go like this: Wood, cardboard, paper, paper, cardboard, wood.
  5. After your flower press sandwich is assembled, put the bolts into the hold and screw on the wing nuts. 

Voila!  The flower press is finished! 

These make excellent Christmas presents for someone and they are easy and inexpensive to make.  People will love them, especially your nature lovers and budding artists.  Enjoy!  

To press a flower, just take the top off and put the flower in between the two pieces of paper on the inside.  Then, put the top back on and tighten town the wingnuts until it is pressing firmly together.  Leave it there for two weeks or so, and when you come back you will have a nicely flattened (but preserved) flower!  

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