Nature Prints

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Nature Prints
Total Time 1 hour Ages all-ages

Pound out natural pigments to make pretty floral- and leaf-patterned fabric.

What you'll need

  • Fresh flowers and leaves
  • Unbleached muslin cloth
  • Paper bags
  • Hammer
Helpful Tip:

Pansies don't work very well, but blue lobelia print just fine; red impatiens may be too bright, but pink ones leave a delicate color. You can play with what works best for your tastes.


The fabric pieces make great pillow fronts or quilt squares. Use the same method to pound leaves and flowers onto paper to make floral stationery, gift tags or notecards.

How to make it

  1. Cover a smooth, hard surface with paper bags and spread out the fabric. Arrange a leaf and flower design on one half of the fabric, then fold the other half over the design.

  2. Feel where the outlines of the leaves or flowers lie. Using a hammer, pound on top of the leaves or flowers, being sure to go all the way to the edges. When the color has bled through the fabric, open it up and scrape off the plant residue. You'll have a mirror image of the leaves and flowers.

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