Nature Fun: Symmetrical Pressed Flower and Leaf Designs

Ages 5+ (Adult needed for help with ironing!)

Symmetry is the quality of being made up of exactly similar parts facing each other or around an axis.Think butterfly wings! For today’s project, you and your family will collect nature items and use them as shapes to create a symmetrical design. 
Then you can draw in your own shapes to add fun details!

Materials Needed:

  • Fresh leaves, wild flowers, nature items of your choice (no sticks though!)
  • Iron 
  • Absorbent paper: parchment paper is ideal!
  • Wax paper also works but will need a piece of fabric between it and the iron so the wax doesn’t melt onto your iron (use fabric that is ok if it gets wax on it, too)
  • Glue
  • Sheet of Construction paper/any paper 
  • Drawing materials

Collect Your Nature Items:

  • Larger leaves and flowers make for extra fun but tiny leaves create a fun (and intricate) experience too!
  • Make sure you have a collection of at least a dozen nature items so you can really explore SYMMETRICAL design making: many of them should be the same or similar

Dry ‘em out:

  • Heat up your iron to medium heat
  • Lay out your nature items on parchment paper
  • Place another piece of parchment paper on top
  • When your iron is warm, press it down onto your materials and hold for about 15 seconds (it will smell a bit like you are cooking vegetables)
  • Lift up your iron and check on your plants: if they still look somewhat normal, keep pressing down your iron in 15 second intervals
  • You’ll be able to tell when they are ready: things like veins become clear and they will be completely flat! You will also see the moisture on the parchment paper

Think Symmetrically:

  • Your nature materials are ready! 
  • Gather your construction paper and glue
    –>Helpful Suggestions: Choose a stem or long leaf to be your midline. This will help guide your symmetrical shape placement.
    Example: if I place a small purple flower on the left of my stem I have to place a purple flower on the right side of it too! 
  • Have FUN with this: where will you place all of your flowers and leaves? Will you create patterns too? 
  • Glue your materials down as you go 

Additional Details:

  • Get out those drawing materials: add in your own loops, shapes, and marks to further enhance your image!
  • Poke holes on the top and string a ribbon through: you can hang up your masterpiece! 

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