One of the classes which I am teaching at the Bead & Button Show is my Leaf Fossil class. The class makes use of sheet molds of foliage. It's one of my favorite classes to teach, and seems to be fairly popular.
My own work has made use of leaf molds for many years in many styles of application. I have an entire storage drawer full of molds and a separate box for those which are used with specific shape cutters for silver pmc pendants and earrings in my wholesale line. The drawer is full and hard to close sometimes.
But I find these molds so irresistible that I cannot stop making new molds. In order to make foliage molds in a small pattern or scale for jewelry, I go out in early spring and pick leaves before they grow too large. I also pick blossoms off my fruit tree or the material after the blossom has faded from the ornamentals, like this:
These types of plant material tend to make very finely detailed lines and have a bit of floral character to them. Here are a couple molds using such feathery stuff: I generally like to use Sculpey Bake Shop Bendy or a mixture of Bake Shop Bendy with Premo for my molds.
And finally, here is a bead pressed between these two molds and finished with acrylic paint antiquing.
Take a walk this spring and keep your eye out for interesting plants or leaves! Have fun!