Source: The Kreative Life
Find some big sturdy leaves, that are waxy and veiny because they work the best. Here is my step-by-step tutorial on how to make skeleton leaves.
You will need:
- Waxy leaves
- Large pot
- Water (12 cups)
- Super washing soda – also called sodium carbonate (2 cups)
- Metal tongs
- Shallow dish
- Food colouring of your choice
- Cooling rack
The amount of water and super washing soda will vary depending on the size and amount of leaves. I would suggest using one part super washing soda to six parts water.
In a well-ventilated room, mix water and super washing soda in pot and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer and add leaves. Allow the mixture to simmer for 2-3 hours. After the 2-3 hours, the water will look very murky.
Using the tongs, place the leaves in the colander and run under cool water. (My leaves were pretty tough, so I don’t know if adding all types of leaves to the colander will work or if you’d have to rinse them individually if they’re more fragile.)
Pour out the murky water and rinse out the pot. Fill the pot with just enough water to cover the leaves. It doesn’t have to be as much used before when simmering them. I added ½ cup bleach. Place the leaves into the bleach water and allow to soak for 20-30 minutes. This will remove as much color from the leaf as possible.
Now, this is where I did things a little differently. Instead of using the brush to remove the skin of the leaf, I placed the leaf flat on my hand and ran it under the sprayer on my kitchen sink. The skin started immediately coming off.
After about a minute under the water, the skin was completely removed. I’ll admit that some of the leaves tore a little, but I still kept them because it added a little character.
Mix water and food color in the shallow dish according to the tint you want. I used a blue and green mixture.
Allow to sit for 10 minutes. Remove from water and place on cooling rack. Allow to completely dry.
After mine dried, I painted a cheap frame and used a piece of scrapbook paper for the background.
Now that you know how easy making skeleton leaves at home is, what will you try next?