pressing flowers blog

Want to preserve the beauty of spring and summer flowers, practice your child’s fine motor skills, and have some fun craft possibilities? Yes? Then look no further than the easy activity of pressing flowers. There are a few different methods, but the easiest simply involves some heavy books and paper.


  • Flowers
  • Heavy books, or plywood with screws and wingnuts, or purchased flower press (lots of options)
  • Parchment paper, printer paper, thin cardboard or coffee filters all can work
  • Weight (can be more books, rock, brick, etc)
wooden flower press
books for pressing flowers

Picking Flowers:

The best flowers for pressing are more flat and open; think daisies vs roses. If you do have a globe or thicker flower you can cut it in half and it will still work. Make sure to pick flowers that are disease free, and have no blemishes. Pick dry flowers, so avoid picking right after watering or early in the morning, otherwise they might be prone to mold. You might also want to dry some interesting foliage too. Foliage can add a nice contrast especially if you use your dried flowers for arts and crafts.

pink flower for pressing


The classic and easy way is to use a large, heavy book. Pick a book that you won’t mind if the pages get slightly damaged from moisture remaining in the flower. 

  1. Open to the back of the book, and place or fold your paper you plan to use on both sides of the open book. As mentioned, parchment paper, printer paper, thin cardboard or coffee filters all work well. Try to avoid paper towels since their texture can leave marks on the flower. Newspapers may also leave ink on the flowers too so best to avoid. 
  2. Place the flower(s) between the paper products bloom/face down towards the back of the book. If you do multiple flowers on one page make sure they have similar thickness for even pressure. Bulkier items should be done on their own. 
  3. Carefully close the book and place more books, or a brick/weight on top and voila. After about 2 weeks you should have a beautiful pressed flower(s). If they don’t seem fully dry, you can change out the paper product and let them press longer.
flowers going in book for pressing
pressed flower finished

Other Options:

A purchased flower press is also a great option, or making your own press using plywood. Simply drill holes on each corner, and use screws with wingnuts to press the flowers down. 

A quicker option is ironing flowers. You can place the flower(s) between parchment paper, squish them down flat with a book, and then iron on low (no moisture or steam) for 15 second intervals until dry.

Another quick method for drying flowers involves using a microwave. Place your flower(s) between the paper product in your microwave and then place a microwaveable plate on top. Make sure your microwave is on a low setting and try 30 second intervals until dry.

Extended Learning:

Try different types of flowers, foliage, and methods of pressing to see which you prefer. Try pulling apart some petals, keeping stems on some blooms and determining what dries faster. Why? Which flowers retain their colors best? There are endless experiments to be done!


With a little bit of mod podge or white glue and a paintbrush you can make a whole bunch of crafts with your pressed flowers and foliage. Make a card, a bookmark, ornament, or decorate a candle. Create a monogram with your dried flowers, or a hanging mobile or garland. Create an animal with your dried flowers and frame the finished product. My son and I had fun creating cards for his friends with our pressed flowers.

Dried flowers are delicate and can break if not handled gently. They are like super delicate tissue paper. It is a great lesson for practicing our gentle hands. Some find it’s easiest to use tweezers to place them. I would love to see your finished products so please send me a picture if you can!

boy with pressed flowers
examples of pressed flowers