Thursday, April 16, 2009

MSCE April and Kids Craft Week: Botanical Prints

I know I've either seen someone do this type of print before or read a post about it. But I don't know where I saw it- so if I should be linking to give you the bloggy-credit you deserve please let me know!

The weather is finally getting nice and I'm loving all the green and spring colors that are starting to show up! I have some flowers coming up in the garden, sprigs of grass (and weeds) showing up in the front yard, and the first potted plant of the year on the step. Every chance I get I want to be outside enjoying and watching nature wake-up. 

Today's fun kids craft is all about what you can do with little bits of plants collected from being outside. It's fun and easy to make these pretty botanical prints.

Aside from the bits of plants that you collect for this project you'll also need: 
  • wax paper (or a plastic paper like the backing of contact paper or a sticker sheet) 
  • a sheet of heavy wt. paper 
  • And a popsicle stick

I took and an almost spent flower off the plant on the step, picked a few blades of grass and some dandelion leaves (saves me some weeding later- bonus).

I plucked the back off the flower (so it would lay flat) and placed the petals onto the paper. (A side note about the paper used for the print - it should be what I think of as a porus paper- something not glossy or really smooth.)

I covered the flower petals with the leftover backing from contact paper that I used for another project 

and rubbed it with a popsicle stick for about 15-30 seconds.

This was the first print.

Here are the second and third prints I made from the same flower. (I love how this looks like it was done with colored pencils or pastels.)

Then I tried some leaves-

and the grass-

The second time I printed the grass it actually came out better than the first. The first over printed- which makes sense it has so much water and pigment, we all know how easily grass can stain clothes and this is pretty much the same thing.

You could stop here, and have a really nice print to frame or hang on the fridge but I decided to cut mine up and make a card. 

Moms and Grandmas-  wouldn't you just love to get a pretty handmade botanical card for mother's day!


  1. This is my favorite so far! I need to pass it on to some of my instructors as a project idea for their summer classes. Great project!

  2. Thanks Joanne. I've done made the kind of prints that you do with paint or ink with day camp groups before, but doing the prints this way would be much easier for an instructor- since you don't have the paint fingers to clean-up afterwards. And I think the results are more interesting.

  3. I've never seen anything like this before - it's very cool!

  4. Posting this on my blog today!


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