How To Personalize Your Own Stationary with Leaf Stamps
If you’re looking for a fresh way to liven up your stationery, the answer could be as close as your own backyard. Whether you’re using your own standard card stock or you want to take the whimsical beauty of seed paper to a whole new level, this quick and simple project will give your correspondence an artistic boost.
Choose Your Leaves
Leaf stamps use the natural pigment of the leaf to create a striking outline on your stationery. If you’ve ever battled grass stains on clothing, you know how effectively certain plants can lend their vibrant coloring to other items. You may need to experiment with a few different leaves before you find the best ones for your project. In general, leaves that are moister and slightly thicker will give you the best results. Dry leaves aren’t as effective for this project, so pluck a few fresh ones from your garden. You don’t need many.
Select the Paper
Use acid-free paper for this project. The ideal choice for a garden-themed piece of stationary is seed paper. Seed paper is an environmentally friendly choice, typically made from recycled cardstock. Assorted seeds are embedded in the paper, so your recipient can plant the paper when he or she is done with it. The paper decomposes and the seeds take root, allowing a lasting garden to bloom from your invitations or greetings.
Arrange Your Leaves
By using this method, you can create an impressive design with just one leaf, so you don’t need to use more than one or two leaves per piece of paper for a stunning effect. Arrange your leaf carefully on the stationary so you’re not obscuring any words on a pre-printed invitation, or covering the writing area on a piece of paper that you intend to jot a note on later. Writing over the delicate leaf stamp can smudge it, so leave the writing area clear.
Stamp the Design
The stamping process is very simple. Lay a paper towel over the leaf and gently strike it with a small hammer. As you press the leaf, its natural chlorophyll will release. You’ll begin to see the shape of the leaf bleed through the paper towel. Continue hammering until you see the full outline of your leaf on the paper towel.
When you’re satisfied with the extent of the pigment released, gently lift the paper towel and leaf from the paper. Lift straight up to avoid smudging the design. Allow the stamp to dry completely before framing, mailing, or otherwise decorating the paper.
With natural leaf stamps, you can create a new, personalized design on each piece of stationary. The stamp offers a little glimpse into your home garden in the shape of a leaf plucked from your yard. Use seed paper for the project, and your stationery can also start a garden of its own wherever it lands. This project is quick and simple, so you can collect your supplies outside and begin decorating on a whim.
Image via Flickr by Kumaravel