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Craft Project: Modern Botanical Prints

  • Bryan McCay

    Getting Started

    I've always liked vintage botanical prints grouped together on a wall as part of my decor. Now finding them couldn't be easier, thanks to the lovely free versions available online for downloading and printing—my source was To give the old-fashioned flowers a modern spin, I used a paint pen to trace the outline of the print onto glass. When framed with a colorful backing, the look is fresh and playful.


    • Picture frame with glass in desired size
    • Printout of botanical, resized if necessary. (Print as a mirror image because the glass with finished botanical will be flipped over when hung.)
    • Sharpie oil-based paint pen in white (fine tip for outlines, extra fine for details)
    • Paper or fabric backing for frame in color of choice


  • Illustration by Kagan McLeod

    Step 1

    1. Place glass from frame over botanical print on a hard, flat surface.

  • Illustration by Kagan McLeod

    Step 2

    2. Trace the outline of a botanical onto the glass with a fine-tip Sharpie, omitting anything that you don't want included in your finished version—like seed pods or extra leaves.

  • Illustration by Kagan McLeod

    Step 3.

    3. Let paint dry for about 15 minutes. Then, using an extra-fine-tip pen, fill in details—veins on leaves, individual petals, etc.

    Tip: Precision tracing isn't necessary. It's more important to capture the spirit of the image. For example, if the botanical has dots or cross-hatching in an area, use that same technique but don't worry about matching it exactly.

  • Illustration by Kagan McLeod

    Step 4

    4. Let paint dry completely, usually less than 30 minutes. With frame face down on a flat surface, place glass into the frame with painted side up. Put the colored fabric or paper on top of painted surface. Replace the frame's original backing and secure.

    Originally published in the May 2012 issue of Family Circle magazine.