Creating a beautiful pressed flower bookmark is easy and cost effective and makes a great gift for gardeners, flower enthusiasts, avid readers or just about anyone who appreciates nature – using the pouch laminating machine you already own.
Here’s what you’ll need to get started:
- Fresh flower blooms
- White paper towels
- Heavy books
- Craft glue (such as Elmer’s)
- Card stock (preferably acid free), cut to 1.5” x 8.5” strips
- Lamination pouch
- Pouch laminating machine
- Hole punch
Pick (or purchase) fresh flower blooms that you want to use as the decorative element in your bookmark. Thinner and smaller blooms, such as violets and forget-me-nots, are ideal as they are easier to press and dry. However, almost any tender flower bloom can be used if you have a little patience.
Petals may be removed from the flower head (if you want individual petals) or you can leave the flower head fully intact. Lay your desired petals or flowers flat on a white paper towel. You don’t need to worry about arranging them, just ensure that the individual petals are not touching each other, as this will result in color bleeding and an inability to separate the flowers once they are dried. Cover the flowers with a second white paper towel and then carefully place the flowers (which are now sandwiched between two paper towels) between a stack off heavy books.
Leave the flowers in place for at least a week before checking to see if they have thoroughly dried and flattened. Patience is key during this step, as blooms that are not totally dry will ultimately rot and will produce disappointing results. Note that for larger or thicker blooms, it can take up to four weeks for a flower head to be completely dry and flat.
The next step is to arrange the blooms and/or petals to create your desired design on the cardstock strips. Once you have your layout finalized for each bookmark you plan to create, it’s time to glue the blooms in place. For best results, we recommend placing a small amount of glue into a disposable plastic lid. Then, using a toothpick, get a tiny bit of glue and glue each of your blooms in place on the cardstock. Use the smallest amount of glue necessary to get your flowers to stick. Then wait for the glue to dry (a few hours should suffice). Now place the glued bookmarks between two fresh paper towels, and place them under the stack of heavy books again overnight to ensure your now glued flowers are totally flat.
Now it’s time to laminate! Carefully line up your bookmarks in the laminating pouch leaving enough space between each cardboard strip to cut between the bookmarks. Carefully feed the filled laminating pouches into the laminating machine. Once the bookmarks come out of the machine, quickly use a tissue to press the lamination down against the flowers and smooth out any air bubbles. Finally, cut your bookmarks out, punch a hole, and tie a ribbon through the hole to complete your pressed flower bookmark.
Pressed flower laminated bookmarks are a great gift and can also be used by nonprofits and schools as a token of thanks or even a fundraiser to support children’s reading initiatives. Filmsource offers a wide variety of pouch laminating machines and laminating pouches for all of your laminating needs. Contact Filmsource today to learn more about our array of products, perfect for businesses and home crafters, alike.