Petal to paper: the pressed botanicals process

Posted by on

Made by my own hands from the dyestuff grown in my garden, this is how I harvest and preserve plants for the pressed botanicals collection.

Picking and pressing

To begin, you need to grow your garden with a project in mind. I love browsing seed catalogues, particularly for smaller flowers to make watercolour effect artworks.

Once grown, it's best to collect your plants on a warm, dry day. The key to successful pressing is to get as much moisture out of the plant as quickly as possible as this will help to retain its natural colour.

I then use blotting paper layered in newspaper. Don't be tempted to use kitchen roll as it will leave a pattern on the plant.

My big vintage trouser press takes 4 layers of pressings, and once that is full, I sandwich them between heavy books.  

Tip: old phone directories make wonderful presses.

christine lewis studio trouser press

The plants remain in the press for at least 3-4 weeks until perfectly dry, before being sorted and stored in airtight tubs ready for use. 

christine lewis studio pressed botanicals

You then have pressed botanicals, ready to use as you please.

← Older Post Newer Post →