The Art and Craft of Pounding Flowers

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9781579548650: The Art and Craft of Pounding Flowers

The Art and Craft of Pounding Flowers

No ink, no paint--just a hammer!

Who would imagine that flowers and leaves from your garden, from a houseplant, or even from a store, could be used--without the fuss of ink or paint--to make beautiful, lasting images? This remarkable new book shows you how to transfer pigment directly from a flower or leaf onto fabric or paper for an exquisite imprint--with just a hammer!

Complete instructions on choosing the best plants, selecting fabrics and paper, hammering flowers, and preserving your botanical impressions

More than 50 projects, including greeting cards, wrapping paper and ribbon, journals, place mats, napkins, throw pillows, wall hangings, curtains, T-shirts, scarves, baby gifts, Christmas ornaments, and much more--all with easy-to-follow, step-by-step instructions

Gorgeous color photographs and illustrations throughout

Craft and gardening enthusiasts alike will enjoy this beautiful book that combines two of the most popular and rewarding hobbies in America. Parents, teachers, and children will love it, too!

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

About the Author:

Laura C. Martin is an accomplished writer, botanical illustrator, lecturer, and storyteller. She has published more than 15 books on gardening and nature crafts. Ms. Martin lives in Atlanta, where she writes, quilts, paints, and spends as much time as possible in her garden.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Introduction

Since the first edition of this book came out, my passion for hammering flowers has not waned. I continue to be amazed at both the beauty and ease of doing this craft and the stunning results obtained by all who put their hand to it.

If you have never tried hammering flowers, what a treat you have in store! If you can hammer a nail, you can be an artist. Welcome to the craft of making lasting and beautiful botanical impressions with little more than a hammer, fabric or paper, and plant materials. I'm not aware of any other craft that offers so many creative opportunities and can be done by such a wide variety of people--from preschoolers to graduate art students to the elderly population. This is a craft that is mysterious, yet simple; it is also failproof and, at the same time, challenging.

The basic technique can be described in just a few words: Simply pick a flower, place it on paper or fabric, cover with a paper towel, and hammer away. The results are astounding--and instant. Many plants transfer perfectly onto material, complete with vibrant colors and tiny details. There is no waiting, no mixing paint, no applying ink. Some plants, such as little Johnny-jump-ups, transfer so perfectly you almost need a magnifying glass to see all the details. Other plants, such as impatiens, come out looking more like an impressionistic painting.

Although this craft is literally easy enough for a preschooler to do, it also offers variations that will attract and challenge even the most experienced artist. Each plant transfers in a unique way, and even the same kind of plant will transfer with varying results, depending upon how mature the leaves or flowers are, what type of material or paper is used, and whether or not the fabric was pretreated before hammering. All of these factors influence the look of the final plant image.

Writing this book has been all about trial and error and discovery, for each flower and leaf brought new surprises. Some of the impressions I created went straight into the trash can, but others came out so well that I used them to adorn clothing such as blouses and scarves, to create art suitable for framing or decorating useful items such as tablecloths and tote bags. My "research" led me to try 60 different plants, flowers, and leaves. (See "Plant Guide," pages 154 to 174, for a full listing.) Further experimenting reinforced the usefulness of hammering on the back side of the fabric to enable you to quickly see results and of taping down plant material to keep it from shifting during hammering. One other fun and useful discovery was that you can get similar results by "hammering" with the back of a metal spoon-a great new find for those who work with kids. The result of all this experimenting and discovering is this book--a treasure trove of information for crafters.

You may wonder why a craft as easy as pounding flowers would warrant a book. My answer is a simple one: While the basic technique is undeniably easy, the variations are so endless they can be overwhelming. Which plants work best? What fabrics and papers work best? How do you make the image long lasting? Can you wash the fabric impressions? You'll find the answers to these questions, and many more, in the pages that follow.

This book gets you started, offering ideas for plants that give you good impressions, the best materials to impress them on, and instructions for making crafts with the materials you have decorated. Some of these projects take only a few minutes to do, while others are works of art that take months to finish.

I've filled this book with information on the art of hammering flowers, and my hope is that you will use it as a springboard to stimulate your own creativity. Start here, with my basic techniques and instructions, then venture out and try new flowers, using them in new ways. While it's fun to have and give items made from your hammered art, it is the process of creation that is the true gift of this craft, for it allows everyone, almost without exception, to become an artist. So read through the basic instructions, take a look at some of the projects, then give it a try--you'll never have more fun with a hammer!

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

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Martin, Laura C.
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