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Flower Press

Brought to you by Lowe's Creative Ideas

Learn how to make this simple flower press and turn beautiful blooms into pressed-flower decorations that will last for years.

 Wooden flower press decorated with flowers

Project Overview

Skill Level

Intermediate

Estimated Time

1 day

Estimated Cost

$$$$$

Tools and Materials

Tools

  • Drill with a 5/32" bit
  • Sawhorse and clamps
  • Sander
  • Foam brush/towel for staining
  • Wood glue
  • Cardboard
  • Flowers

Materials

  • 1" x 12" x 4' red oak board, #1066
  • 2 packs 1/4" x 3" coarse-thread machine bolts
  • 2 packs 1/4"-20 wing nuts
  • 8 washers
  • Natural wood stain

Items may be Special Order in some stores. Product costs, availability, and item numbers may vary online or by market. Paint colors may vary slightly from those shown. Availability varies by market for lumber species and sizes.

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Instructions

Making the Press

Step 1

Have a Lowe's associate cut two identical oak squares. (We made a 7" x 7" flower press; a 12" x 12" press would work well for pressing several flowers.)

Good to Know

If the board you're using has a slight cup from edge to edge (it'll rock slightly from side to side on one face), arrange the two cut-to-size boards so the curve faces up on the bottom board and down on the top board. Tightening the four bolts will then add extra pressure to the center.

Step 2

Stack the squares and clamp together on a piece of scrap wood. Use a pencil to mark a point 1" in from the corner. Repeat for the remaining three corners. Using a 5/32" drill bit, drill through both boards to ensure a precise fit for the bolts.

Step 3

Sand and stain both boards. Let dry.

Step 4

Place washers on the bolts and slide the bolts up through the bottoms of both squares. Test the holes with the bolts -- the top board should be easy to move up and down. If not, use the drill to widen the holes slightly on the upper board. Now, you're ready to press flowers.

Pressing Flowers

Step 1

Cut a cardboard sheet to size (7" x 7" or 12" x 12") and cut notches near all four corners to fit around the bolts. Place the cardboard inside the press. Follow with a layer of paper to absorb moisture from the flowers. (Blotting paper works best, but paper towels work, too.)

Step 2

Place flowers on top of the paper without overlapping the petals. Label the flowers if desired, and then place another layer of paper over the flowers. Repeat the entire layering order 2-3 times.

Step 3

Add a washer and wing nut to each bolt. Tighten the wing nuts gradually, working in a circle, until they're all equally tight. Leave the press undisturbed for at least three weeks.

Good to Know

We used pressed pansies, violas, sunflowers, chrysanthemums, tulips, rose leaves, ferns, cosmos, and daisies to decorate our press. To decoupage flowers on the top board, mix three parts glue and one part water in a paper cup. Stir well. Spread a coat of the mixture over the top of the press with a foam brush. Arrange the pressed flowers over the surface and smooth out any air bubbles with your finger. Use the foam brush to spread a coat of the mixture over the flowers and let dry. Minor shrinking and wrinkling will occur as the flowers dry.