Tuesday, June 7, 2011

How to make a flower press

My husband and I made a few of these flower presses years ago. Actually, it was more than a few years ago; we made them to dry flowers for our wedding. Time really does go by quickly.
Well, our daughter recently found them and has had a great time pressing all the spring flowers she finds. So I thought I would share with you this really simple method of creating a great flower press.

Materials needed:
2 pieces of scrap wood (mine are 12x7x3/4 inches)
4 carriage bolts (approx. 4 inches long)
4 washers (approx. 3/4 inch - be sure they fit over the square piece on the inside of the bolt)
4 wing nuts (be sure they fit on your bolts) 
4 washers (approx. 3/8 inch)

We clamped the 2 pieces of wood together and drill one hole approximately 1.5 inches in from each corner through both pieces of wood. This ensures the bolts line up perfectly. Be sure to make the hole a little wider than the width of the bolt so they easily fit through.

Slide the bolts through the larger washers and place them through one piece of wood. 
Cut cardboard to fit between the bolts. I wanted to have as much drying space as possible so I cut it this way. If you want it to be pretty, you can cut a perfect rectangle.
I place a piece of tissue between the 2 pieces of cardboard so the flowers don't stick. I have used waxed paper but I found the colors weren't as bright in the end. Personal preference I guess.

I lay the flowers pretty side down so I can flatten them the way I want them to. If you just lay the cardboard on top without guiding how they press, they can become misshapen.
Place as many pieces of cardboard/flowers as you like (cardboard - tissue - flowers - tissue - cardboard - tissue - flowers - tissue - cardboard.... you get the idea :-) ) and then place the second piece of wood through the bolts to rest on top of the last piece of cardboard.

Put the smaller washer on and then thread the wing nut. Tighten all 4 until they are tight against the wood. Don't over tighten or you will have a tough time loosening it later.

I just added vinyl lettering on the top to make it new again for my daughter .
I find the bright colored flowers press the best and white ones tend to brown.

We have a great time going for walks with our kids and picking different flowers for them to dry.

Here are a few we dried recently (sorry the photo is dark. I tried to take the picture outside in the sun, but it is windy here today and they kept blowing away).
Linking to some great parties including: Story of A2Z 


  1. Very cool! Thanks for sharing!

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  3. How long Do you need to keep the flowers in the press for?

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