Pressed Flowers – Using the Heat at Hand

We are having quite a heat wave here in the Mid-Atlantic states. I decided to take advantage of the heat at hand.

I picked quite a few of my hydrangea flowers last night. They are beginning to show streaks of contrasting colors as they mature. I have always had a hard time getting the hydrangea blossoms to dry without brown spots appearing. I have tried the traditional method of pressing in between pages of a book. I have experimented with the microwave. I have had no luck with either method. This time I am trying something new.

I pressed the hydrangea petals in between the pages of a book, and then I put that book in the back seat of my car, covered with another book and a weight, and backed up the car into the hottest part of the driveway. I’ll update the results in a day or two.

I also decided to use the heat to flash dry some parsley that is on the verge of going to seed. I lightly rinsed it and laid it upon a towel draped pizza sheet and put it in my trunk. The heat inside will quickly dry the herb, and the darkness will help retain the color…I hope.

I’ll update the progress in a day or two.

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22 thoughts on “Pressed Flowers – Using the Heat at Hand

  1. Pingback: Quirkiness – Using the Heat at Hand/Drying Herbs « Minding My P's With Q

    1. timelesslady

      Roses are great, but they are not one of the best for color retention. They look pretty framed as a solo act in a small frame. They are a little thick to use under clear Coverseal or contact. You can also use Modge Podge type medium to glue them and waterproof them.

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      1. wow thank you for all the info. Your right, my roses turned out to be quite dark than I expected. I think I need to start experimenting. What about leaves?Are they a good idea to press?

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        1. timelesslady

          I’ve never pressed the leaves of roses too much. I can’t remember if they press well or not. I think they darken a bit, but not as much as the rose petals. I tend to use “weedy” flower leaves. The regular oval shaped leaves look very boring on a pressed flower arrangement, but leaves that are sparse…such as weed leaves, with their interesting shapes, create something called “negative space” and add much more interest to the composition. Queen Anne’s lace leaves grow low to the ground. Since the plant grows in dry conditions these work great in pressing. Ferns press great, but lose their greens, still the brownish green they become is pretty. Look for weeds. Don’t forget curving stems for a natural look. Try to press everything you find. A spotted, discolored diseased leaf can be turned into a birdhouse or other “wooden” looking garden art. I’ll try to have another post in a week or two on what you can do with the odd items. Have FUN…

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  2. Rosie Waldt

    I am making cards with my pressed pansies, however, would you be able to tell me how to protect them on the front of the card when the receiver opens the envie?

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    1. timelesslady

      When I created and sold pressed flower cards at craft fairs I would cover the flower portion with coverseal. A very good grade of contact-type paper. There is a film called frisket film that will also cover pressed flowers. I would cut the film smaller than the card itself, place on top of the flowers, then cut strips of different textured papers to hide the edges. The cards then appeared to be a matted picture. They are lovely. You also could cut a thin piece of specialty paper to size, or even tracing paper, tissue, etc. Place it over the design when you put it into the envelope…it would be a type of liner. This would not be as reliable as the film seal, but still work. Another idea is to write “Contents fragile – Open and remove with care,” on the flap of the envelope. Thanks for stopping by the blog. 🙂

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      1. Rosie Waldt

        Thank you soooooo much for the info on my pressed flower card. I have already done a Lattice cut which is 2 1/2 x 4 in the center of the front of the card and have put the pansies/leaves on the bottom/lower sides – is the frisket film or coverseal a type of sticky paper? I’ve seen some type of covering that leaves a *loose seal* over the edges of the flowers which I’m not sure that is what I want. I really appreciate all your information. Thank you. Rosie

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        1. timelesslady

          Hi Rosie, Yes, the coverseal leaves a loose seal as does the frisket film. I have used coverseal the most, only because it worked so well for me, why change a good thing? I think frisket is an even looser seal, but I am not sure. I know there are different types. There is also film that airbrush artists use, but I am not sure of the name or brand. Happy pressing. Kathy 🙂

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    1. I have. At times I go back and delete posts that are near doubles. I also cringe when I find mistakes that have been sitting in the archives for years. No matter how hard I check…there are always editing mistakes that slip by me.

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      1. Oh my goodness – I hear ya. But I have come to accept mistakes as ok – and just goes with a nice active life I guess…
        but it seems like my posts lately have had at least one typo – not sure why – either way – I know what you mean about seeing one has sat for a while.
        and I would not delete any posts – they are good resources and even if close or similar – they still have their own energy….
        🙂
        but if you want to delete them then that is another thing…
        right?

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        1. So funny…this post…and the post on ‘Using the heat at hand,’ is a perfect example of me changing how I do things over the years. I don’t know if I updated the post about the hydrangeas pressing in the car’s heat, I’ll have to go back and check, but last year I pressed them in the pages of books, most did well and did not brown. Maybe the hydrangeas in the back of the car, using the heat at hand were fresh off the bush. Pressing the flower right after blooming is where I often had problems with browning and over the years I learned to wait until they were more mature. A perfect example of how my techniques evolve over the years. Now, the question, should I go back and amend that post…hmmm…???

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          1. That’s a good question…
            I would add an author update – and mention a quick note and then link a couple other posts – for anyone who wants to follow the update
            But I’d leave it and just addthe author update…

            Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Pressed Flowers & Purpose – Queen Anne’s Lace and Butterfly Host Plants – MINDING MY P'S WITH Q

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