Thursday, August 24, 2017

Quick Way to Preserve Your Summer Blooms


Summer will be over soon and so will those beautiful blooms you've enjoyed.  Why not save a little piece of summer and that wonderful memory of pretty flowers by pressing some of those blooms and capturing the last bit of summer .  .  .  perhaps a stunning zinnia that caught your eye, or a few impatiens that exploded with cheerfulness and color, or a group of geraniums that's so perfect for framing! And the easiest and quickest way to preserve those memories is by pressing your own flowers in the microwave, using absorbent paper, two ceramic tiles and rubber bands.  Can you believe it? Normally, it takes several days or maybe weeks to press those lovely beauties in heavy-weighted books, but by using a microwave, it can take less than five minutes!   Here's how:  

It's best to start with fresh flowers.  When picking flowers from your garden, select flowers that are either new blooms or buds about to burst open. Do this in late morning or early afternoon, after the dew has evaporated and no moisture is seen.

Next, place a continuous sheet of two paper towels on top of the smooth side of a ceramic tile.  Then place a sheet of parchment paper on top of the paper towels - enough to fold over and cover the flowers.  Arrange the flowers down on the parchment paper, making sure none of the flowers touch unless you want them to, otherwise they will be stuck together. 


Gently fold over the papers on top of the flowers .  .  .
 and place the smooth side of the second ceramic tile on top.  Secure with two rubber bands .  .  .
 and place in the microwave.  Set at 50% power level for 40 seconds intervals.
When the time ends, turn the tile press over and let it cool off, then microwave again for an additional 40 seconds at 50% power level.

Once done, open the tile press and check to see if there is any moisture on the papers.  You can still see moisture stains on the picture below.


Continue this process again and again - making sure you let the ceramic tiles cool off between times, until you don't see any moisture on the papers and your flowers are dry. It took me less than four minutes to dry these impatiens.

After allowing the flowers to cool off and completely dry, it might be a bit tricky to remove them from the parchment paper, especially if they're impatiens, without pulling or tearing them apart. They are quite delicate, so you'll have to be careful. To do this, lift the paper up and with your fingers, scratch the back of the paper where the flowers are to release them from the paper.  And I seriously don't recommend using wax paper.  The seal was just too strong to remove the delicate petals from the wax paper after drying. 

 The impatiens are so fragile - almost translucent like.
But the zinnias were quite easy to remove  .  .  .
 and the details and colors of the flowers were really fascinating up close.
The colors and hues seem to be a bit more intense and enriched!
 but the geraniums were a bit tricky, too, with a few coming apart.

Once all the flowers are removed from the papers, it's time to frame them.

You can use whatever type of frames you like, but I got three black frames from the dollar store that looked too formal or business like .  .  .
 so I decided to painted them with white chalk paint and let dry.  Not liking the plain looking finish .  .  .

 used the closed blade of scissors, and scratched the edges of the frame to reveal the straight black trim.


Next, placed the flowers on 8"x10" cardstock and once satisfied with the design,


added a dab of tacky glue to the back of the flowers to secure and placed the glass over the design.  Then added the backing and placed in the frame.



Enjoy preserving your beautiful blooms quickly by pressing flowers in the microwave for an everlasting effect .  .  . for so many craft projects!



Thanks for stopping by

and take a little time to enjoy -
Happy Crafting!

21 comments:

  1. very sweet project Gail. Love how you are using the summer blooms. Something to cherish and enjoy always.

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  2. That is way to cool Gail! So pretty. Hugs and blessings, Cindy

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  3. Gail, These are so beautiful!! Love this idea so much!

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  4. These are so pretty! The Victorians used to do this all the time. Thanks for sharing!! Thanks too for taking the time to stop by!!
    Hugs,
    Deb

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  5. This is so pretty. I love how delicate the flowers are and it is a pretty way to display them.

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  6. What great tips! I have always loved pressed flowers but never had the patience to wait weeks so this is perfect for me. I will be doing some this weekend.
    :) gwingal

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  7. This is fantastic Gail. Never thought of using the microwave! Pinning to save and I know I'll be giving this a try.

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  8. How Interesting! I'd never heard of using the microwave and it sounds so fast, it's too good to be true! Unfortunately I don't have a microwave... I'll have to borrow someone's next summer to try this! :) Lisa

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  9. I never knew there is another way of pressing flowers apart from placing them in books. It is worth a try :).

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  10. What a lovely idea, I have pressed a few before and now I can do something with them, thank you. x

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  11. Such a fun idea! What a quick way to press / preserve flowers.
    #handmadeMonday

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  12. Great idea on keeping summer in the home jut a bit longer. Love it!

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  13. Very good idea and much easier than I thought it would be. Thank you for sharing with us this week at Celebrate Your Story and we hope you will join us again next week.

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  14. I hadn't heard of this technique before. Thank you for sharing, Gail. The colors are still so pretty after drying.

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  15. They turned out pretty and I'm impressed with the vibrant color!

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  16. Hello Gail, oh what a great craft project for saving summer flowers. The flowers look so pretty framed. You think of such fun crafts.

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  17. It is a great easy way to dry flowers! How beautiful they are in your frames!!! Thank you for sharing at Sweet Inspiration Link Party

    www.artdecorationcrafting.gr

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  18. Gail these are so pretty and you're right they have taken on an intensity that they didn't have before. This really is a great way to hold onto summer. But you know me I am racing forward to fall. ;)

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  19. Being a Summer girl, I LOVE this idea! What a great wake to hang on to memories of a beautiful summer garden. Pinning

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  20. This is a great idea! I have wished that I could save some of my flowers by just drying them but they just wilt. I remember helping my girls press wildflowers for a project when they were in school. This would be a fun way to show off some of my flowers.

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  21. Interesting. I've never dried flowers in the microwave. Cool project and thanks for sharing! I found you on the "Let it shine: You're the star" blog party. Have a great Monday!

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