::Play:: Flower Pounding

October 5, 2011

For today’s post for Eat:Play:Learn we share a post from Rhythm of The Home Contributor, Rachel.

Flower Pounding

Flower pounding is one of my favorite autumn crafts to do with the kids.  You could do it year-round but my favorite flowers to use bloom best in the spring and early fall.

Materials

Paper or cloth for the background

Hammers (one for each person who wants to pound if possible!)

Hard flat surface (that won’t be damaged by hammering on top of it)

Basket (to hold the flowers you gather)

Scissors (to help remove stems and pick flowers)

Small scrap piece of cotton fabric to lay on top of your flowers while you pound

Flowers and leaves

Pencils, markers, crayons, etc. (to draw and write in your cards)

A note on your background: We were making cards so we used water color paper, although heavy card stock also works well. I wouldn’t recommend normal copy/printer paper as it is too flimsy. You can also pound your flowers onto plain white cotton or unbleached muslin and frame your picture.

A note on your flowers: Flat open faced flowers work the best. Pansies and yellow daisies are my favorites. You can experiment with all types and colors of flowers; you might be surprised at what works and what doesn’t. Fern leaves are also beautiful to use in this craft. Colorful fall leaves look gorgeous when pounded too.

Gather Natural Materials

Go outside with some enthusiastic children and gather your flowers and colorful leaves. Get lots!

Make sure you take time to smell the flowers and enjoy being in the great outdoors with your precious little ones. Enjoy the feel of the breeze blowing through your hair, and the smell of the grass and the falling leaves. Take time to swing in the trees or climb up a big rock wall!

Find a good spot to rest for a while.

I try to remember that I will have these sweet boys under my care for such a short period of time, there is so much fun and learning that I want to share with them before they grow and start families of their own! I want them to have happy memories of their childhood that they will want to recreate someday with their own children.

Once you have a bunch of pretty flowers gathered in your basket you can set to work.

Pounding Flowers

If you are making cards like we did, then you’ll need to fold your paper in half and decide which side you want up and how the card should open. Then lay your paper out flat and carefully place a flower face down in whatever position pleases you the best. If the flower you’ve chosen has a large stem on the back or a very juicy part where it connects to the stem you may want to carefully cut that piece off. I find it easiest to do this by laying the flower where I want it and holding its petals in place with my left hand and carefully cutting the juicy part off with scissors in my right hand. You can also pluck the petals out and arrange them carefully on your paper before covering them with your cloth, as we did here with this small yellow sunflower’s petals.

Then without disturbing the petals, lay your piece of cloth on top of the flower, holding it in place with one hand while you lightly tap on top of the flower with your hammer. Little ones may need your help holding the flower with the cloth over it while they tap with the hammer. Tap all around the flower, hitting it with your hammer as flatly as possible.

Once your cloth looks wet all over on top of the whole flower carefully peel the cloth back and peel up the pounded flower.

And there you have it! Your flower should have transferred all of its pretty color onto your paper. Continue adding more flowers and leaves to your art until you are pleased with the outcome. You can add stems to your flowers by pounding or drawing them on with colored pencils. This craft is as much fun in the making as it is enjoying the final product! Here are some pictures of our finished cards:

Even the cloth we used to cover the flowers while we pounded them turned out pretty…

::::::::::::

Rachel Flores is a happy mama of four in the foothills of East Tennessee. She is passionate about showing her children the wonders of the world they live in, and spends as much of her time outdoors with them as she possibly can! In her “free time” she creates, sews and journals about their second generation homeschool life on her blog At the Butterfly Ball.

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{ 7 comments }

heidi margit October 6, 2011 at 1:29 am

Thanks for this great idea, I will use it as an activity in our autumn party we are having!

Laura October 6, 2011 at 1:53 am

this is beautiful. how suprisng that such a heavy tool can make such a delicate picture :-)

Amanda October 6, 2011 at 12:33 pm

with out fail, every time I see this project I think “Why haven’t I done this yet!?” The results are absolutely stunning.

blessings,
Amanda

heather October 6, 2011 at 9:07 pm

these are absolutely beautiful! i love activities that include a nice, thoughtful, process… not just the end result. and hammers ;) considering my son LOVES hammers :)

thank you for a wonderful idea… we will definitely be doing this soon!

Sas October 11, 2011 at 1:31 am

Oh, this is just wonderful! What a great idea!
I will try it immediately, it looks so lovely.

Thank you so much for sharing and inspiring
and warm greetings from Holland,
xxx Sas

♥ Aleta ~ Hinterland Mama October 15, 2011 at 7:40 am

I was quite surprised to come across this post, linked to by ‘the freedom three’.
I posted about this exact topic a while ago: http://lovesbyletabon.blogspot.com/2011/09/hammer-pressed-flower-prints.html. Inspired for me, by Amanda Soule’s new book.
It seems a very popular idea. Yours turned out so gorgeous – my little guys perhaps were quite heavy handed!
But boy, isn’t it fun?!

Charliene May 24, 2012 at 9:37 am

We just did this. It was a really neat activity, although yours turned out much brighter and perfect than ours. We made them into small cards to send to grandparents. I’m wondering what I can do with the cloths. They’re so beautiful! Do you know if the colors wash out in the laundry? Any ideas?

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