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Using pressed leaves to decorate gift wrap

natural gift wrap brown paper and pressed leaves

Pressing leaves to decorate gifts is simple, free and can be done throughout the year, building up a supply to use on your gift wrap.


The only downside is that some leaves become slightly brittle over time.

I like to press green, fleshy kinds of leaves - ivy, fig leaves, magnolia along with ferns. I usually preserve fallen autumnal leaves in glycerine instead.

Pressing leaves is very simple - you need either a flower press, large heavy books and some sheets of absorbent paper, or sheets of paper and a rug that gets walked on a lot.

  • Select your leaves and make sure that they are clean, dry and without blemishes.
  • Lay them face down on your paper - either in the press or book, or on sheets to be put under the rug. Make sure that they don’t overlap and aren’t creased.
  • Cover with another piece of plain absorbent paper and squash lightly all over the surface of the paper.
  • Build up layers until you have used up all your leaves.
  • Close the press, put the book under something heavy or put the sheets of paper between newspapers under a rug.
  • Wait for 4 - 6 weeks. Though if you are wanting the leaves for something semi- disposable - like decorating gifts - then you can probably use them after 10 days.

I tend to use pressed leaves - like the sweet cicely leaves in the photo - flat on top of a gift. Wrap string around the gift several times, tying at the back of the parcel. Then tuck your leaves under the string at the front.

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