How To Create Leaf Stamps For Crafting

Everyone loves crafts.  They are fun to do.  They can be easy to make.  They can fill your house full of unique and interesting decor.  And they can be much cheaper to make than to buy!  For example, leaves make a great addition to almost any craft, especially in stamp crafts.  Now just think how great they’d look together…stamps and leaves…So here are some tips on how to use leaves as a stamp when crafting.  

It is a traditional custom to go out collecting beautiful, colorful leaves in the fall and then press them between pages of a book (or some other method of pressing) until they have dried. Now, these can last a very long time, but the leaves will quickly turn brown and become brittle. And that’s a problem for any leaf lover.  So consider collecting the images and making leaf prints instead of just saving the leaves.  Go out and collect leaves from the woods, a field, or your yard. You can use any kind of leaf that you like, including leaves from flowers, herbs, or even weeds.  They all work just as well as tree leaves!  Once you’ve found your leaves, you will need to temporarily press the leaves in a book or plant press so that they don’t become damaged before you have the chance to start using them as a stamp.  

Before you begin to make the leaf prints, be sure to cover your work area with paper.  Select a rubber stamp pad (or you can use a paint roller) and place the leaf on the inked surface, with the top side up.  Place a piece of paper over the leaf and gently rub across it, pressing the leaf against the ink.  If the leaf is larger than the stamp pad, you will obviously have to pick it up and place it down on various points on the stamp pad, until the entire surface is covered in ink.  Then pick up the leaf by the stem, and place it ink side down on the piece of paper that you want to leave the print on.  Then place a second piece of paper over the leaf and rub gently across it with your fingers.  Be careful not to let the leaf slide around or the image will be smeared, and you’ll have to start all over again.  Carefully lift the top piece of paper and set it aside.  Then carefully remove the leaf.  The bottom piece of paper should have a colorful image of the leaf.  

Print some leaves by placing ink only on the top of the leaf, instead of the underside and compare them.  The veins will probably show up better if you use the underside of the leaf.  It will also help you be able to identify the plant that the leaf came from and you can write its name on a sheet of paper with the leaf.  When you get really good at this stamping procedure, you may be able to make leaf imprints without removing the leaf from the plant.  Take the rubber stamp pad outside with you and place it under the leaf.  Be sure to press the entire leaf into the ink, and then onto some paper.  

You can make leaf prints to decorate a plain piece of paper.  They look nice on cards, invitations, notes, and name plates for dinner parties.  You can also make a nature journal, including the name of the tree the leaf came from, the area where you collected the leaves, the date, and even who you were with when you found it.