It’s hard to say goodbye to your bouquet, especially after so much thought and care went into planning your wedding florals.
While faux flowers keep forever, there’s something special about real florals on your big day. The good news is, there are many ways to preserve your wedding flowers and keep the memories alive – whether you’re keen for a DIY project or want to hand it off to the professionals.
Check out the ideas below for inspiration.
1. Hang your flowers upside down
The easiest and simplest way to preserve your wedding bouquet is to hang it upside down to air-dry. You can hang the whole bouquet together or separate the individual flowers and hang each stem individually.
Choose a dry, dark place such as your hallway cupboard for the best results. The process usually takes a week or so, but it can take longer if the weather is cool. Once fully dried, the twigs and stems become very brittle and fragile – so take care when handling them.
During the drying process, the full and vibrant colours in the flowers will slowly fade. An air-dried bouquet is usually subtle, with lots of brown and yellow tones. If this vintage look is your style, air-drying is a great option. If you want more vibrancy and colour, go for one of the other methods below.
2. Press your flowers
Flower pressing is a fun craft you can do at home with simple, everyday materials. On the other hand, if you don’t have the time or just want a really high-quality result, you can invest in professional flower pressing services.
Start by selecting the best flowers from your bouquet. If you have a small bouquet, you may even be able to press the whole lot together.
Spread your flowers out on clean wax paper, carefully adjusting the orientation and positioning of the petals until you’re happy with the look. Once pressed, you won’t be able to manipulate the flowers, so don’t be afraid to take your time with this step.
Place another sheet of wax paper on top of the flowers and place a heavy book on top. Add heavy objects on top, such as a vase or bricks. Alternatively, you can use a wooden flower press.
Check your flowers after one week, but be prepared to let them rest longer before using them. You’ll know they’re ready when there’s no moisture left.
You can use pressed flowers to create all sorts of keepsakes. Arrange them attractively as framed art, create a fashionable phone case or turn them into coasters – the options are limitless.
3. Freeze dry your flowers
Freeze drying is a preservation process that involves removing moisture from your flowers by freezing them. It requires specialised equipment, so unless you think you’re going to freeze dry a lot of florals in the future, it’s best to get it done professionally.
You can freeze dry individual flowers or your whole bouquet, although most professionals will separate the bouquet before freezing. Each flower is rehydrated and pre-treated to make them more shatterproof and improve colour retention.
The flowers are then placed in the freeze dryer where they remain in a vacuum. The full process can take 10 to 15 days, depending on how many and what type of flowers you have.
Professionals may colour treat your flowers to ensure a realistic and vibrant look. They can also help with arrangements and displays. We recommend taking your display to a local custom framing studio and requesting a shadow box frame.
4. Transform your flowers into something new
If you like the idea of preserving your flowers, but aren’t a big fan of floral arrangements for decor, consider transforming your wedding flowers into something new.
When it comes to crafting with your wedding flowers, clear epoxy resin is your friend. You can use it to create paper weights, coasters, ring holders, jewellery trays and so much more.
You can buy moulds from your local craft store. Simply fill the mould half way with epoxy resin and then around your flowers in the fluid. Once you’re happy, fill the mould to the top and let it dry. Then you can remove the mould and put your new object to use.
5. Commission a piece of art
A more modern way to preserve the memory of your wedding flowers is to commission a piece of art featuring your florals. Whether it’s fine art photography, watercolour painting or a custom embroidery – a one of a kind artwork is a great way to remember your wedding flowers.
The great thing about commissioning a piece of floral art is that you can ensure it’s exactly to your style and design taste. It can be as realistic or abstract as you like, and you can play with colour palette and artistic mediums to suit your existing decor.
In the end, you’ll have a forever keepsake that fits right into your home’s aesthetics. Don’t forget to invest in a quality custom frame to showcase the artwork.
However, you decide to remember your wedding flowers, a little thought will go a long way. If you’re going to head off on your honeymoon straight away, consider asking your bridesmaids to send the bouquet off to be preserved on your behalf. Alternatively, hang it upside down to dry – either way you’ll have a beautiful keepsake to come back to and enjoy for years to come.