The temperatures have dropped too low for the sap to be flowing, but I can’t stand to not be working on some sort of project, so the perfect time to start my stillroom book. My friend Anke did a guest post here at Comfrey Cottages about making a stillroom book last year here.
Sometimes it takes me years to jump into a project… that is just the way I am. I read everything I could about bees, collected bee books, went to meetings, even collected honey pots, etc for 5 years before I ever took the leap to keeping my own bees! Same with the maple syrup making and even herbalism.. Let’s just say I like to have a good game plan and theoretical knowledge of something before beginning :)
Here it has been 8 months since Anke and I were talking about making a stillroom book… and I am finally started. It took me awhile to even decide which sort of book I wanted. I decided on this kind of scrapbook sort of book that has pegs so you can add pages as needed. I like the fact that it had a cover and pages that I could wipe off if they got dirty here in the apothecary.
You just open this flap on the inside to take out the screw pegs to rearrange or add pages.
I thought and thought about what all I wanted to include in this book. I decided that botanical samples would be a must. Here is nettles.
I started pressing flowers and other plant bits last season in preparation for this project. Since actually starting, I have decided I will make sure and include stems, barks, seeds, roots and other bits this year in my pressings. This is the little press I use now. You will note that I label things as I put them in the press. I will just use white out to cover last years labels.
My copy of Mrs. Grieve’s A Modern Herbal had been where I pressed botanicals before!
I have been doing a lot of thinking on what I want to include in the writings. I have decided to do short herbal monographs and also include herbal medicine making recipes and herbal edible recipes also. In the interest of not having page after page of recipes I have came up with a great idea to not only save pages, but be neater also, which I will share with you another time :^)
I plan to include drawings, photos, and do a bit of decorating along the way too. I want this to be a functional plus beautiful family heirloom I can pass on to which ever child is herbally inclined. If more than one child is interested, it will be easy to take the pages out, copy them, glue in botanicals and make a second one.
Tips on habitats the wildings can be found in, and growing requirements for some will be included also.
In future posts about this I plan on sharing with you about the process of gluing your pressed botanicals also. There is an art to it! I find it peaceful and relaxing to do my gluing at the library. They have large tables I can spread out at, great lighting and best of all.. no distractions!
I will continue to share this project as it evolves. Do you have a stillroom book you are working on also? Or a straight herbarium? I would love to hear about it if you do!
Herbal and Honey Hugs to all who visit Comfrey Cottages