Monday, October 13, 2014

Fun with the Flower Press by Linda Hess

 
 
 
This year I became the art teacher at a local Catholic School.  My first "job" was to clear our cabinets and cupboards and shelves and...you get the idea.  I literally went section by section in the room pulling everything out, cleaning the shelves, and then reorganizing like materials (that I found in multiple areas) in labeled plastic bins.  Now I know what I have in the room and the students can easily find materials.

During that cleaning spree I discovered tucked away on a far shelf, 2 (yes 2!) Arnold Grummer's Papermaking kits AND an Arnold Grummer's Field/Flower/Paper Press.  I was so excited!  It was like finding gold hidden away.  I brought the press home with me to experiment, after all I needed to know what I was doing before showing it to my students ("Gosh Mrs. Hess, you have such cool things for us to use!")


 
The Purple Asters in my front yard called to be my first experiment with the flower press (http://arnoldgrummer.com/products/presses.html).  I read the directions and went to work.  Imagine my surprise to find dried flower petals already in between the layers of blotter paper!  I guess they were forgotten by the previous owner.  Great for me as I can start to craft with the petals while the others are drying (3-10 days the instructions say).
 
First I must press the Asters and then I can create a card.  Following the instructions I picked some flowers and leaves.  "Pick flowers in the morning after the dew is gone." said the instructions.  Being an impatient person, I picked them first thing in the morning while the dew was still on them...but I blotted the dew off with a paper towel (hopefully that will work and I will not discover moldy, oldie petals when I open the press in a few days!).
 
The instructions say "For best results, layers items of the same thickness together."  with that in mind I placed the leaves on one layer, topped with another piece of blotter paper. 
I then layered the flower heads on the next layer,


topped by many layers of blotter paper.  The stack was placed into the press and strapped tightly. 
Oh my gosh this is so easy!!  I am heading to the pumpkin patch with my daughter and her friends.  I think I shall stash the press in my purse and possibly find more pieces to press while there :-)
 
Next post: What to do with the dried petals??  Cards? Paper??  Only time will tell
 
 

3 comments:

  1. What fun treasures to find, I love pressing flowers and leaves!

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  2. What a treasure to find the AG kits and press! The kids will love creating with them. What a great way to teach about re-purposing. Very lucky kids to have you as a teacher.
    Love and light,
    Michele

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  3. Linda, I guess I didn't realize you were a teacher in addition to being a skilled designer. Let me know if you'd ever like to present paper making at a teacher's conference. We'd work with you on it. We're also developing science lesson plans for K-5 and 6-12 applying Nat'l Science Standards. Maybe you and a classroom teacher would like to collaborate on a lesson. We purchase 12 lesson plans a year - would love one from you!

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