A nature frame, or sun catcher, is a beautiful addition to your windows. It’s a very simple craft to do with kids of all ages. Here’s my step-by-step guide to making your own nature frame using lolly sticks. Making a nature frame using sticky back plastic gives you a clearer result, but I prefer using tissue paper to cover it. A plastic-free solution seemed more in keeping with a nature frame.
Step 1 – Collect and press your flowers
Firstly you need to collect your flowers. If you’re collecting them anywhere other than your own land please be very careful about what you pick. Some flowers are protected and many are delicate. If you’re unsure, please don’t pick them.
In order to press your flowers you’ll need either a flower press or some heavy books and a kitchen roll. Ideally you don’t want patterned kitchen roll as it can leave an imprint on the flowers, but it’s not always possible to get hold of stuff without. Put your flowers between two sheets of paper and weigh them down with several heavy books. Leave these to dry out for a week.
Step 2 – Make your frame
There are several methods you can use to make the frame of your sun-catcher, but we decided to use lolly sticks as it seems more rustic. These are the ones that we used. Lay your lolly sticks in a square and glue with either PVA or hot glue. Cut two squares of pink or white tissue paper roughly the size of the frame and glue one of these onto the frame. If you are using PVA glue try not to get too much onto the paper as it makes it soggy and fragile.
Choose your flowers and roughly how you would like to arrange them. Using a small amount of glue secure these in place. You don’t want to cover the whole flower and stem in glue or it will just fall apart. PVA glue really is best for this bit because hot glue becomes very hard too quickly.
Once you’re happy with your flower arrangement glue the other sheet of tissue paper over the top of the flowers. You don’t need to put glue on this side of the flowers, but you do need to glue the tissue paper to the frame. Secure everything in place with four more lolly sticks. Leave everything to dry.
Hanging your nature frame
Once completely dry you should hang your nature frame in a window that doesn’t get direct sunlight all day to maintain the colours of the flowers. You can either secure it with a bit of blue tac or glue some string to the back of the frame.
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