Have you ever wanted to find a way to preserve all those beautiful flower petals you find lying around your garden or on your nature walks? One fun and eco-friendly project is making your own recycled floral paper! It’s a great way to preserve the beauty of your favorite flowers while also creating something unique and useful.
It’s also a great way to show kids how to be resourceful and use old materials to create something new! I was honestly surprised at how well this paper turned out! It’s a lot sturdier than I expected and would be great for special projects like scrapbooking or making fun invitations for a party.
Here’s how to get started on your very own floral paper!
- Flower petals, glitter, or any preferred add-ins (We used rose petals and lavender)
- Shredded or cut paper scraps
- Large basin or container
- Screen (an old window screen can also work)
- 2 old picture frames approximately the same size (or you can try this starter kit!)
- Staple gun or duct tape
- Flat surface (such as a piece of cardboard, wood, clipboard, etc.)
- Several pieces of fabric cut to the approximate size of your paper
1. Make your mold and deckle (screen attached to frame)
Gather two old frames of any size. Just keep in mind the size frame you choose will affect what size paper you’re able to make! Take your screen and cut so that it fits the opening of your frame.
Use a staple gun (or electrical tape in my case) to attach the screen securely to your frame.
2. Shred and soak your paper
Gather approximately 4 cups of shredded paper. If you have a paper shredder, this is perfect! If not, you can probably still use paper you’ve cut or torn yourself, it’ll just be much more time consuming and tedious.
Place your shredded paper into a bin with enough water to cover everything. Let it soak overnight.
3. Blend paper into a pulp
After at least 12 hours, blend a couple handfuls of paper at a time with plenty of water. You don’t want to overwhelm your blender with too much paper and not enough water!
Pour the pulp mixture back into an empty bin after each blend. Do this until you’ve blended all of your paper up!
Fill the bin containing pulp mixture with more water until there’s enough to submerge your frame.
4. Add flower petals + other add-ins
Sprinkle in your flower petals, glitter, or whatever add-ins you want! You can use dry or fresh flowers. We used a combination of dried chamomile, lavender, and rose petals.
If you want more control of the placement of your flower petals on the paper, you can also choose to not add them to the pulp mixture right now and instead sprinkle or place them on top of the pulp after you lift your screen out of the water at the end of step 5.
If you don’t want floral paper, feel free to skip this part!
Stir it up right before you strain in the next step!
5. Strain The pulp
Hold your two screens together so that the empty frame is on top of the frame with the screen (screen side up).
Submerge both under the water until some pulp has settled over top of the screen.
Lift up and let the water drain out. Once you can see that pulp is covering the entire screen, lift it all the way out and hold until most of the water has drained out.
6. Transfer paper
Prepare a hard, flat surface with a strip of fabric on top. Place the frames down (still together) on the surface.
Remove the top frame. Stand the bottom frame upright and slowly lower it down so that the wet paper side is facing down on top of the piece of fabric.
Take a sponge and press down on the backside of the screen to soak up water from the paper. Work your way across the surface, ringing out water from the sponge as you go. Continue until the sponge isn’t soaking up water anymore.
7. Hang floral paper to dry
Lift the frame up gently and your paper should now be transferred over to your piece of fabric. Hang up the fabric until it’s completely dry. Repeat until you’ve used up all the pulp or until you’ve made as many pieces of floral paper as you want!
8. Peel off your finished floral paper
After 24 hours, your paper should be completely dry and peel off of the fabric easily.
And that’s it! You’ve just made your own recycled floral paper! You can use it for scrapbooking, invitations, card making, writing fun letters, or any other creative project you like. How cute would these DIY nature journals be with your floral paper for the interior pages!?
Plus, you’ve helped reduce waste and given new life to something that might have otherwise been thrown away. Enjoy your beautiful new paper!
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