Sunday, September 16, 2007

Spotlight on DesignsInFloral

Buy Handmade

One of the wonderful things that Etsy is great for is reclaiming crafts. I'm sure we can all name certain things that just speaking the name makes us cringe. We've seen one too many hot-glued, poorly knitted, hodgedpdoged items to ever think highly of those "art" forms again. But that is unfair to the craft--it's not the fault of the technique or the materials that that particular practitioner has, uh, a lot of growing to do. And browsing on Etsy is a great way to redeem those crafts that you have long since written off.

Pressed flowers is one of those crafts that, perhaps because of its seeming simplicity, often finds those big, fake, smiles plastered on other people's faces. But once again Etsy provides proof that there is hope. And more than hope, there is beauty.

DesignsInFloral shows the art and craftswomanship that is possible within the medium. And really, I will never see pressed flowers the same way again. Her work consists of two main types--the first is the more traditional flower pressing--single flowers or bunches pressed and available on just about anything you can think of. Even in these more straightforward designs, Cheryl shows a clear understanding of composition and color. The second type of work found in her shop is not only original, it's captivating--she uses pressed flowers as collage elements to create larger stories. In these works, the flowers blend into the image, creating two layers at which the work can be enjoyed and appreciated.

The first image shows an example of her flowers used as collage elements to create a figurative work. Now, granted, I am a sucker for cute snowmen and Santa Clause's's SO CUTE! Ahem. The texture of the floral elements works wonderfully to create a very dimensional image from Santa's soft beard and puffy coat edging to the sharp pine needles of his small tree. The whole thing has a wonderfully organic and "country" feel. This card would be beautiful framed among a collection of Santa Clauses or hung in a rustic/primitive/country home. This is the kind of card I buy, fully intending to send, and then find I can't part with!

The second image shows how the floral elements pull together for an abstract piece. The colors and textures here are simply gorgeous and pull together beautifully for a piece that simply embodies autumn. I especially enjoy the careful attention to the background of the piece. Look carefully and you will see that it is not simply a couple of squares placed on the card, but many smaller pieces. Also of note is that the entire background is made of leaves. Imagine the process--each one must be hand selected. Each one carefully pressed flat. Each one cut *just so to fit the card and place their color in the desired location. Each one affixed to the card. And finally the leaf skeleton (which has undergone it's own process) can be affixed. The entire card bespeaks care and attention to detail. This is the soul of handmade, this is what pressed flowers should be.

DesignsInFloral is still a relatively new Etsy shop, just having opened this summer, but I would keep a careful eye on the shop for unique and fabulous cards that are sure to come this fall and winter. They are just the thing to send some handcrafted love with!


  1. Absolutely wonderful work--yeah DesignsInFloral!!

    Mrs. Dragon--you did a very nicely done write-up too. Very nice.
    Smiles, Karen

  2. thanks for highlighting this seller - she does AMAZING work! Alas, I too am a sucker for a really cute snowman - and the one you spotlighted is fabulous :)

  3. I have purchased some cards and a piece of art work from this artist. It is amazing how much detail is in them. Much success to her!


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