How to Preserve a Four Leaf Clover in a Frame

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Lucky you—you’ve found a four-leaf clover. This is a fairly rare botanical occurrence, and you should preserve it as proof of your good fortune. The art of flower and leaf pressing started long before the invention of acid-free paper and UV-resistant glass and sealers. However, with these technological advancements and some careful preparation, your clover will remain bright and intact for generations to come.

Proper Preservation

    Fold a piece of printer paper in half, lay the clover inside it and place the paper and clover inside a heavy book.

    Stack three other heavy books on top and allow the clover to dry for two weeks.

    Remove the clover from the book and place it on a plate. Handle the clover carefully; the leaves will be brittle.

    Paint the clover with few drops of green food coloring to enhance the color. Clovers will lose their color quickly, turning from green to a grayish-green in a few weeks.

    Allow the clover to air dry overnight and then repeat steps 1 and 2 with fresh paper.

Framing

    Take apart the frame you have chosen and clean both sides of the glass. Place the glass on a clean rag and allow it to air dry overnight. Handle the glass with care from this point forward. Once the clover is sealed, you will not be able to clean the inside of the glass again.

    Choose an acid-free paper on which to mount the clover.

    Lay the frame face-down on the paper, without the glass, and trace the inside of the frame.

    Cut the paper along the traced line. This will ensure that the paper fills the frame but does not cover all of the glass. If you are using a mat on top of the paper, you can trim the mat instead of the paper using the same process.

    Place a small amount of acid-free glue at the center of the clover where the leaves join and lightly press the clover onto the paper. The placement of the glue will ensure the leaves remain intact.

    Spray the entire paper with an acid-free, UV-resistant sealant.

    Lay the paper onto the mat and tape in place with acid-free tape. If you are not using a mat, skip this step.

    Cut a piece of plastic Mylar the same size as the paper or mat as instructed in steps 3 and 4.

    Center the mounted clover face-down on the glass so that an even rim of glass appears around the entire paper or mat.

    Place the plastic Mylar on top.

    Seal the mounted clover to the frame with aluminum tape. The tape should adhere to the glass as well as the paper. If you feel confident in your folding abilities, you can wrap the aluminum tape over the edge of the glass. However, if you misalign the tape and fold it over too much, it will be visible on the front of the glass and aluminum tape is very hard to remove.

    Assemble the frame.

    Tips

    • Aluminum foil is an acceptable substitute if you cannot find plastic Mylar in your local craft store. However, you will need to work very carefully to avoid rips and tears. Cut a fresh piece of aluminum foil if it has been damaged.

About the Author

Transplanted Yankee Erin Watson-Price lives in Birmingham, Ala., and has been writing freelance articles since 1997. She worked as writer/co-editor for Coast to Coast Dachshund Rescue's newsletter, "The Long and the Short of It." In 2007 she obtained a certification as a copy editor. Watson-Price holds a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images

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