Seed Paper Tutorial

I first heard of seed paper–or hand made paper that has real flower seeds embedded in the pulp itself and is actually plantable–about a year ago while browsing through a stationary catalog.  It was the coolest idea I’d ever seen–and so incredibly spring-y!

Well, who knew that you could make this funky stuff all by yourself? And dang we had a good time! These would be just perfect to include with a birthday or Christmas card–don’t you think?

First Step:

Making the Screen Frame

Here’s what you’ll need for the screen frame:

6-12 wide craft sticks–think tongue depressors

Craft glue

1 or 2 pieces of mesh or screen about 6″x6″

electrical tape

Glue four sticks together–like this.

Lay the screen over the sticks and glue in place.

Now glue two more sticks–one on the top and one on the bottom. Cut two more sticks and glue in place like this.

I rested a glass bowl over the frames to hold everything in place until the glue dried.

Your frame should look pretty much like this.

Now wrap the whole frame with electrical tape, making sure to cover all the exposed wood.

Second Step:

Making the paper pulp

Here’s what you’ll need to make the pulp:

4-6 pieces of used white computer paper, construction paper, art paper,  newspaper or junk mail

small flower seeds

water

hemp twine (optional)

ground cinnamon (optional)

dried petals (optional)

Tear the paper up into 1-2 inch pieces…

and put it in the blender. Pour in enough warm water to cover the paper.

Blend until paper turns to pulp. It looks like white oatmeal.

If you want to add cut up pieces of hemp twine–now’s the time. Whirl it up.

Have your seeds ready–but don’t add them yet. Do not put your seeds in the blender. I probably didn’t need to say that–but you never know. Ok, now fill a 9×13 glass Pyrex dish half full with warm water. Spoon enough pulp into the water to make it like a thin soup.

Now add about a couple teaspoons of the seeds. Add the crushed, dried flower petals and a sprinkle or two cinnamon–if you want.

Stir it all together.

Step #3

Making the seed paper

Dip your screen into the pulp solution. Move it around like you are panning for gold or something, until there is enough on the screen to cover it.

Push pulp from the edges of the frame onto the screen with a spoon or table knife.

Kinda like this…

Carefully tip the frame over–pulp side down…

onto a towel.

With another towel, press down on the screen to sponge out the excess water.

Press for about 1 minute.

Now gently lift off the frame. If you have to coax the paper off the frame just go slowly–nudging with a table knife if you need to.

Let your paper rest on the towel until it’s dry enough to move. Transfer to a pan and allow to dry all the way–overnight is best. If you’re in a hurry you can use a blow dryer set on low.

Once it’s completely dry, tear it carefully in half.

 


Poke or punch a hole in the top somewhere–more in the middle than mine is–and loop twine through the hole–to use as a bookmark.

Once you are finished with it you can tear it into pieces and plant it in loose, moist soil–about 1/4 to 1/2 in deep.

Now then…don’t you feel clever?

:]

 

 

Oh, do come enter our EASY “Melissa & Doug Summer Toys” $75 giveaway! We need 200 entries by June 3rd 2011. Please, please–spread the word!

 

 

Basket & Grass

Now, I know that Easter was last week, but I also know, that if you are like us–there are still some chocolate bunnies kicking around your place somewhere…and likely you are still picking basket grass off the carpet. It all just came too fast this year and I’m just not quite done with it all.

So in the spirit of the ongoing “celebration”…and nibble-fest, you’ll forgive me if I couldn’t resist the urge to show you the cute little pot holders we came up with—

calling them “Basket & Grass” for hopefully obvious reasons.

I’d like to make a couple in pinks and purples and yellows, you know…just to see how sweet it would look in the spring pastels. Kinda makes you want to run out and buy some baby chicks–doesn’t it?

If there are any brave souls out there who would like the pattern, let me know in the comment section. That just may be the very incentive I need to actually write the silly thing down. It will be good for me.

Happy spring!

A Few Lovely Things

Simple finger food…

cozy sweater hugs…

amazing, sweet friends…

baby Conference notes…

pink twirly skirts…

unexpected snowflakes…

“big girl” undershirts…

second generation softness…

and very, very brave garden buds…

What is lovely in your world this week?

Ahhh…Spring…

Have you ever wondered what on earth “Vernal Equinox” means? Well, my lovelies, I’ll tell you–and then you’ll be wise and all knowing…

like me.  :]

There are two days each year when daytime and nighttime hours are approximately equal– each being 12 hours long. One occurs between March 19 and 21 and is called the Vernal Equinox—or Spring’s Equal Night. Did you know that Easter is always the Sunday after the first full moon–after Equinox? I’ve always wondered how they figure all that stuff out.

Vernal Equinox in Vilnius, Lithuania    (The Daily Herald)

People all over the world celebrate this day with candle ceremonies, planting seeds and flowers and Spring feasts–that usually include eggs, cheese, seeds, potatoes, pork or fish and asparagus, which I suppose are considered particularly “springy” foods. Don’t you positively love any reason to make a day an unforgettable event?

It’s not too late–if you want to celebrate the return of Spring–and who doesn’t? Gather up your own festival foods and enjoy a family night planning your garden or working in the yard–at last, at last!

Truly–whatever means spring to you–today’s the day. Do it!

“Spring Equinox”

Listen, can you hear it? Spring’s sweet cantata. The strains of grass pushing through the snow. The song of buds swelling on the vine. The tender timpani of a baby robin’s heart.

Spring.

~Diane Frolov