diy project: seeded paper pouches


With spring coming near, it is time to freshen up my pots and planters. I found a mix of wildflower seeds and thought that it is the perfect thing for spring. With my planter full of seeds and a half of a bag left, I figured I would share the wealth and pass some seeds on to my friends.  I made big sheets of seeded handmade paper embossed with lace or chunky sweater knits. And as I am always on the search for cute gift-wrap boxes for all of the spring birthdays, I made the paper into simple boxes.  They fold flat for storage so they don’t take up much room, and best yet, are 100% recycled and when planted will biodegrade and grow into something beautiful. –Brenna, paper & ink

If you are looking for another use for Brenna’s beautiful seeded plantable paper, check out this DIY plantable love note tutorial from last month!

CLICK HERE for the full how-to after the jump!

Materials:

For the paper:

  • Paper… newspaper, printer paper,
  • Blender
  • Water
  • Window screen
  • Baking rack
  • Sewing needle and thread
  • Large basin (make sure your baking rack fits inside, I used a plastic storage box)
  • Wildflower seeds
  • Textured items, such as lace, sweaters…
  • Smooth tea towels, and towels.

For the pouches:

  • Seeded paper
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Scoring tool… bone folder, end of a paintbrush…
  • Glue
  • Circular object such as a plate, about 8” in diameter (or a compass)

Instructions:

1. Make the screen… cut a piece of screen to the same size as the rack. Sew the screen on the rack at the corners with the needle and thread. It does not have to be sewn all the way around… just enough to hold.

2.  Tear the paper into small pieces.

3. Put about 1 part paper to two parts warm water in the blender.  Blend until all of the paper bits are gone. You should have a fairly smooth pulp.

4. Pour the paper pulp into the basin

5.  Repeat making paper pulp until you have the bottom of the basin covered with pulp.

6.  Add about 4 blender jars full of water to the pulp in the basin making a thin soup.

7.  Add the wildflower seeds to the pulp and stir to incorporate.

8. Dip the screen covered rack in the basin letting it sink all the way to the bottom. Stir the pulp on top of the screen. Gently bring the rack up jiggling it back and fourth gently and making sure it has a uniform layer of pulp on top of the screen. Pull it out of the water and let it drip for a moment.

9. If desired, lay the textural items on top of the wet pulp. Lay a smooth tea towel on top of the pulp and textures and gently push down on the tea towel squeezing the excess water out.

10. Gently tip the screen (tea towel side down) onto a towel. Take the rack off and put another towel on top of the pulp.

11. Press the towels to get as much water out as you can… or you could do this on the floor and step on the towels to remove the water.

12. Gently remove the top towel, and peel up the sheet of damp seeded paper.  Let dry.

For the pouches…

1.  Cut a rectangle from the seeded paper any size you would like.

2. On one side of the rectangle, score about ½ an inch in from the edge, and fold in making a tab. Fold the rectangle in half so the opposite edge meets the fold you just made.

3. Apply glue to the tab only and press the rectangle closed creating a flattened tube.

4. To make the curved ends of the pouch, place your plate or other circular object at one of the open ends of the rectangle. Trace around the end of the circular object creating an arch. Repeat on the other end.

5. Cut the ends off along your markings creating semi circles.

6. Score the ends of the box where they will fold by using the plate again. Match up the ends on the rectangle with the edge of the plate to make a football shape. Score with the scoring tool, and repeat on the opposite end and the other side.

7. Gently fold the ends of the box in on top of each other to create the pouch.

8. Make sure you let the recipient know to plant the box when they are done!

  1. these are tres cute! Love the green ribbon. Perfect for St. Patty’s Day!

  2. Wow…how innovative…truly green!! xx meenal

  3. What a fun and unique idea. I can’t wait to share this with my art class!!

  4. Ashley says:

    Wow. Eco-friendly packaging that is a gift in itself! I’m anxious to try it myself

  5. I am wondering if instead of placing a textured item to create a pattern if using a clean stamp would also work?

    I give seeded paper hang tags with all jewellery purchases. Although this would make a nice package for special occasions, instead of the recycled paper boxes that I normally use.

    Thanks for this great idea!

    Chelsy

  6. Lauren says:

    Is the dip time in the water short enough that the seeds don’t sprout? I’d never thought about that before with seeded paper, but in looking at the process it makes me wonder how to keep the seeds from starting their process.

  7. Just stunning. What a labor of love – great job!

  8. Teri says:

    This would be a great project for little Christmas gifts! I know that Cargo, the makeup, does their packaging like this. I LOVE that!! It seems like a great idea on so many levels! So glad to have seen this tutorial! Thank you!

  9. Victoria says:

    amazing! Thanks for the pictured instructions. I think I’ll give it a try :0)

  10. claire says:

    This is super cool! I love it!

  11. I used to make these when I was a kid. Going to try making these again soon!

  12. Veronica says:

    cool idea, will try it asap.
    but wouldn’t it be easier to put in the rack first and then the pulp on top? or does this not work???

  13. These are fantastic! I’ve done something similar, but these sound so convenient!

  14. Shirley says:

    Like Adrienne, used to do these as a child and taught my daughter to do them as well, for Girl Scouts (many years ago). They made great gifts then and I’m sure they will again. The blender makes it much easier!!!

  15. Kirsten says:

    Awww this reminds me of my wedding programs….we used a seeded paper as well. I love the look of it, and how you can plant the paper and get a gorg garden.

  16. Belly B says:

    This is fantastic! Super innovative!

  17. Sara says:

    Hi! I featured you tutorial on my blog!

  18. Taylor says:

    I was trying to think of a creative way to give my boyfriend all the little notes I write him, and I love the idea of making seeded pouches. I’ve made homemade recycled paper before, but it never occurred to me that I could add seeds! and I love seeing how to make the pouches!

LEAVE A COMMENT

Design*Sponge reserves the right to restrict comments that do not contribute constructively to the conversation at hand, contain profanity, personal attacks, hate speech or seek to promote a personal or unrelated business. Our goal is to create a safe space where everyone (commenters, subjects of posts and moderators) feels comfortable to speak. Please treat others the way you would like to be treated and be willing to take responsibility for the impact your words may have on others. Disagreement, differences of opinion and heated discussion are welcome, but comments that do not seek to have a mature and constructive dialogue will not be published. We moderate all comments with great care and do not delete any lightly. Please note that our team (writers, moderators and guests) deserve the same right to speak and respond as you do, and your comments may be responded to or disagreed with. These guidelines help us maintain a safe space and work toward our goal of connecting with and learning from each other.