flower press

If you are handy with basic power tools, you will be able to build a flower press following these step by step instructions.

Cut two pieces of 1/2″ thick wood 10″x12″ square.
Plywood, solid pine, or oak are suitable materials.

Using a straight edge, on one piece of the board draw two light pencil lines corner to corner. Done properly the two lines will intersect in the center of the board. Measure in 1″ from each corner of the board, following the lines and mark an X. Place the marked board on top of the other board and making sure the edges of the two pieces are lined up, clamp the boards together. A vise works great for this if you have one.

Drill a 5/16″ hole in each corner where the X is marked. Once the holes are drilled, remove the boards from the vise or clamps. Using a sander or router remove the sharp edges from the boards and sand the flat surfaces with 150 grit sandpaper followed by 220 grit. When finished the sanding process, wipe the boards clean, making sure they are free from any dust. To the outside surfaces using stencils or painting by hand add flower designs, a clear coat of varnish or both giving the flower press a professional-looking appearance.

Flower press assembly

The actual flower pressing is done between sheets of card board and blotting paper. For this size press you will need 10 sheets of card board and 20 sheets of blotting paper cut to 9&1/2″ X 11&1/2″. Trim back 3/4″ on all corners of the sheets. Using one piece of board, insert four 1/4″ X 4″ bolts through the holes from the outer side. Lay the board on a flat surface with the bolts pointing upwards. Place on the wood and in between the bolts, one sheet of card board then two sheets of blotting paper and another sheet of card board.

Continue to lay the sheets on top of each other in this order until you have used up all the card board and blotting paper. Now place the other board on top guiding the bolts through the drill holes and apply flat washers and wing nuts. The flower press when properly assembled will resemble a sandwich with wood on the outside and card board, blotting paper in the center.

Flower Pressing

Under maximum use of your flower press, you will be able to press 10 layers of flowers at one time. To press one layer remove the wing nuts, washers and the top board. Remove one sheet of cardboard and one sheet of blotting paper. Lay the flowers on the blotting paper leaving space in between them.

Spread the flowers out evenly over the entire surface of the paper and cover with the other sheet of blotting paper followed by the cardboard. Replace the top board and apply the washers and wing nuts tightening evenly by hand. Store in a cool dry place.

Spread the flowers

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