Thursday, October 27, 2011

Pressed Leaves

Apart from pumpkins, corn mazes, and apples, I love the leaves of fall. I love green and I love the trees being green, but when they turn the different shades of yellow, orange, red, and brown I can't help but love it too. Unfortunately, fall in the south is short. We tend to have longer summers so by the time it starts to cool off its suddenly winter. If we are lucky, the leaves will last about 2-3 weeks. Sometimes the leaves change and fall over night. I'm not kidding. Last year when the majority of the leaves changed, they were gone the next day. However, there is a way to save these leaves!

I honestly prefer to press leaves and place them in a frame. I did this to a number of leaves last year, most of which I sold or gave as gifts, and they still have their colors. By framing them, I ensure that they will be intact for next year and I won't have to spend money buying new supplies and hunting down new leaves, not that I'm not always on the look out for new ones.

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Above are some dipped leaves. They look wonderful, I must admit, but cost more to make. I only spend $1 on a frame and press the leaves in one of my text books. Furthermore, dipped leaves are more likely to be damaged during storage and will therefore have to be replaced the next fall. However, if you wish to try this method, Martha Stewart has a great tutorial.

Now on to the pressing! This is actually VERY simple and you only need 3 things! Unfortunately I haven't been able to find my leaves. I believe they ended up being donated a during our move. I actually just figured this out, thinking they were in a box this whole time. Looks like I'm going to have to make some new ones. This means that I don't have any pictures of my own and I apologize.

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Supplies

Photo Frame (as many as you want)
Brightly colored fall leaves
Large book for pressing

Optional- Wax paper. I don't put any in my book with leaves, but flower petals tend to stain so I use it then. Also optional, card stock or construction paper.

Directions

Pick your leaves. Perferabally, pick leaves that have already fallen. If you must pick a leaf from a tree, thank the tree for allowing you to have its leaf.

Place the leaf (or leaves) in the back of the large book. If you are using wax paper, protect the pages with the paper before adding the leaves. Allow to sit for 1-3 weeks depending on the pressure. I tend to stack other large things on top of the book so it only takes 5-7 days to press. Use your discretion.

Remove the leaves and place in a frame. I put white backgrounds in the back of mine, but black will look great too. The white background is seriously the insert turned around. If you want to add your own background, you will need card stock or construction paper.


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Finally display!


What do you like to do with your fall leaves?

Look Alive!
<3The Mortician's Wife

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