For today’s projects, I’ll be using nature as my partner in crime and will show how to make cards with pressed flowers and other plant matter!
A few months ago my husband and I were on having our weekly zoom call with our sweet daughter, Sarah. She told us she’d been working on making wreaths with dried plants and flowers and somewhere along the way she had also pressed some flowers, which she showed to us. She is such a nature girl and we love that about her! I immediately had visions of making cards. She mailed some of her pressed flowers to me and as I played with them, I decided that my crafty friends might really enjoy learning how to make cards with pressed flowers. The first photo is one of the gorgeous pressed flowers she sent.
The steps used to create my focal pieces are pretty simple.
Here’s what I did:
- I covered my card stock with a thin, smooth coat of Golden Soft Gel Medium (in a glossy finish).
- Place your dried flower onto the prepared cardstock.
- Gently cover over the dried flower with another smooth coat of Gel Medium. The gel medium looks milky white when it’s wet but will dry clear and shiny.
Here’s a photo of my container of Gel Medium:
Once your gel is dry it essentially serves as a fixative both to protect and preserve the dried flower. Here’s one of my dried flowers after I’ve done the steps above and when it’s dry. This is the piece that I created in my video tutorial at the end of this post.
Check out how the colors of the flowers changed!
I did not anticipate that this would happen so it was a fun little surprise. That said, now I’m contemplating ways to preserve the color of the flowers. More on that later.
So for my various focal pieces I played with a variety of cardstock colors, types and layouts.
This first design was made with Sahara Sand card stock.
A few details:
- I’ve dry embossed and sponged my background layer.
- The focal piece is distressed a bit on the edges and raised up on a foam adhesive sheet.
- For one final step, I used the direct to paper technique and rubbed my Saddle Brown StazOn pad over the surface a bit to add to the distressed look.
The focal piece for this next card was created using Vellum Card Stock.
When I first applied my gel medium to the vellum the piece got completely misshapen and I didn’t think it was going to work. After it dried, however, it flattened out considerably and I was able to flatten it enough to be able to use it.
A few details:
- A piece of Whisper White card stock is attached to the backside of the Vellum to provide a smooth bright backdrop for the dried flower focal piece.
- There are no Dimensionals on this card.
While generally speaking I like the glossy finish I’d also really love to try some of the matte finish gel medium with these dried flower cards too. I think that the shinyness competes a little with the delicate flower image.
This last card is my favorite and is created using a window sheet.
A few details:
- The same process was used on this card with the only difference being that I attached my flower to a window sheet. It was fun to be able to see both sides of the flower in this case.
- To create my raised frame I did a trick with my rectangle stitched dies to get a square frame instead. Watch my video tutorial to learn how to do that. Scroll all the way to the end of this post to find the video.
To learn more about how I put this card together, watch my video tutorial at the end of this post.
Here are some additional pieces I’ve prepared to make cards with. I showed these in my video when they were still pretty wet. You may notice that the one in the upper right hand corner still looks a little milky white in places. That one is the thickest of the plants I used and is not completely dry yet.
Here’s a photo of how this particular plant looked before attaching it with the gel medium.
I just love fern leaves!
For these next focal pieces, I wanted to be able to see both the front and the back of my fern pieces, so these are attached to window sheets with that goal in mind. This first photo shows the front sides. Now there are a few differences in these two pieces that I want to point out.
For both pieces, I put gel medium on the window sheet first, but for the one on the left, I also put gel over the top of the fern. Can you see how the one on the right retained its color, while the one on the left is now brown?
I did one additional step for the one on the right with the goal of trying to retain the green color over time.
For the one on the right, I sprayed the surface with some Krylon Acrylic Coating (shown below). This should seal the surface and hopefully help to retain the color over time.
Isn’t this fern leaf on my window sheet so pretty?
Now I just need to decide how to use it on a card.
In addition, the surface now has more of a matte finish rather than a super shiny glossy finish. If you look at the side by side photos carefully you may be able to see the difference.
In the photo below these fern leaves are flipped over to see the backside, so the one on the left is now the one that is the green one. Also, you may be able to see that the one on the right (now the brown one) is not totally dry yet.
I hope you’ve enjoyed learning how to make cards with pressed flowers!
Please leave me a comment and let me know if you’ll give this a try!
At the end of this post, you’ll find the project dimensions, supply list, and my video tutorial. I hope you’ll enjoy playing with these ideas and will visit me again sometime soon!
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Watch my video to learn how to make cards with pressed flowers:
The project demonstration begins at around 9 minutes in case you’d like to jump ahead.
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- Card Body in Sahara Sand: 4-1/4″ x 11″
- Sahara Sand Focal Piece: 3-5/8″ x 4-1/2″
- Sahara Sand Dry Embossed Layer: 4″ x 5-1/4″
- Very Vanilla Inside Layer: 4″ x 5-1/4″
- Card Body in Whisper White: 5-1/2″ x 8-1/2″
- Vellum Cardstock Focal Piece: 2-3/4 x 4-1/4″
- Whisper White Focal Backing: 2-3/4 x 4-1/4″
- Dry Embossed Layer in Whisper White: 4″ x 5-1/4″
- Whisper White Inside Layer: 4″ x 5-1/4″
- Card Body in Natural White: 4-3/4″ x 11″
- Frame Piece in Natural White: 4-1/8″ x 4-1/8″
- Window Sheet: 3-3/4″ x 3-3/4″