A wedding bouquet is a beautiful and unique component to you and your wedding. What do you do with your wedding bouquet after the wedding? Do you give it to someone special, toss it away or leave it to wilt? Don’t you think it’s just too precious to let go of your wedding bouquet just like that? Have you ever thought of preserving your wedding bouquet? Many affectionate brides will choose to preserve their wedding bouquet to make a wedding day keepsake. What about you?
Preserving your bridal bouquet can be affordable (via DIY) and also expensive – from $100 to $800 or more (via professional help). The method you choose to preserve your bouquet will determine the outcome and price. For e.g. freeze-dried by professional is expensive but you get a realistic looking bouquet while DIY drying upside down will result in shrink bouquet.
It’s good to take the wedding bouquet preservation idea into account during your wedding planning especially if you’re going to have the bouquet preserve by professional. Because you need to book and have everything ready so that you can ship the bouquet to the intended preservationist right after your wedding. If you’re going to preserve your wedding bouquet by DIY, you still need to get the supplies ready. Also bear in mind which ever method you choose to preserve your wedding bouquet, it will take few weeks to complete. So make sure you have time to monitor or carry out the process as bouquet preservation need to be done within few days after your wedding. If you’re going to honeymoon right after the wedding, make sure you get someone to help you out if you’re doing the preserving yourself.
If you are going to have a bouquet toss as well preserving your bouquet, you can ask the florist to make another bouquet for the toss or use your bridesmaid’s bouquet. Simple as that.
So you’ve decided to preserve your wedding bouquet?
Here are the 4 typical methods & tips of wedding bouquet preservation:
1. Hang your bouquet to dry
This is the simplest and cheapest method of all and I’m pretty sure you’ve heard or even attempted at it before. This method typically have you hang the flowers or bouquet in upside down condition and let nature take control. The end result of this method is very different from when its fresh. The color will become brownish for light color flowers and become darker for dark pigmented flowers and the flowers will shrink in shape and size.
a. Tie the handle near the stem with rubber band or string.
b. Hang the bouquet upside down in a dark and cool place. E.g. closet
c. Once they are dry few weeks later, spray the bouquet using dry flower spray or hairspray to prevent them from falling apart. Another reason for the hairspray is to bring some of the color back.
– Make sure they are hang freely to dry to avoid flatten on one side.
– It’s better to dry the flowers individually then drying a bouquet to ensure uniform drying. You can reassemble the bouquet after that. Flowers all pack together will somehow trap moisture thus preventing thorough drying. Sometimes it will become moldy.
– Reason the flowers are keep out of direct sunlight (in dark) is to maintain good color (reduce fading).
– Perfect for roses, peonies, sunflowers, lavender, hydrangeas and strawflowers. Avoid this method if your flowers are white and have thin petals.
You can then decorate the dried bouquet in a vase or frame it up in a photo frame, made into Christmas ornament and make potpourri by adding a few drops of scented oil to the trimmed dried flowers or petals.
2. Press your flowers to dry
As the name suggest, you simply press the flowers and left it to dry. The outcome of this pressing method is your flowers/bouquet will be in flat dry form. Normally when you DIY, you will be pressing the flowers individually as the bouquet will be too large to handle. To preserve the whole bouquet you might need to get professional help.
a. Choose a heavy book like an encyclopedia or phone book.
b. Layer a page with wax or parchment paper to avoid mark.
c. Place flowers you would like to press on the paper and cover with another layer of wax or parchment paper.
d. Close the book and leave it for two weeks or more until the flowers are dry and flat.
– If you need to press a much larger flower, you can use cardboard instead of heavy books and then press with heavy objects like bricks or table/chair.
– Flowers with thin petals are the most ideal for pressing as they dry faster and tend not to mold when pressed.
– All flowers are perfect for pressing except flowers with petals that can easily disengage when dried.
You can use pressed flowers to fill a picture frame, make into pendant or laminate it to make bookmark.
3. Preserving using silica gel
This method uses silica gel as the drying agent to draw out the moisture. Your flowers will look livelier and more vibrant in color compared to hang to dry and pressing method. Silica gel is usually found in shoe box, electronic box or packaged food. You can buy silica gel at craft store or floral shops. For this method, normally you need to trim the flowers and bury it individually.
a. Fill a large container with silica gel.
b. Gently, bury the flowers you wish to preserve in the silica gel.
c. Cover the container tightly and leave it for a week or more.
d. Gently remove the flowers and use a brush to remove excess silica gel.
e. Spray with hairspray to keep them intact.
– When buying silica gel, get the fine variety.
– Alternately you can use sand or borax instead of silica gel.
– This method can be expensive as it takes a lot of silica gel just to preserve small flowers. The good news is it’s reusable!
– Perfect for roses, tulips, zinnias and other sturdy flowers.
You can use the flowers preserve by silica gel method for decorating your coffee table, made into jewelry or have it frame up or keep in display case with your other wedding keepsake.
4. Preserving using freeze-drying
In freeze-drying, the moisture from the flowers are remove (turned into vapour) by means of vacuum in one chamber and then from vapour turned into ice in another chamber. Due to this, the natural shape and color of the flowers could be preserved. And yes, amongst all the preserving method discussed in this post, freeze-drying has the most lifelike outcome. Because it utilizes special freeze-drying machine, this method can only be done by professional help and can be expensive.
To have your wedding bouquet freeze-dried, make sure you have already contacted the flower preservation company before your wedding to make the necessary arrangement. Freeze-dried flowers are normally placed in display like shadow box or domed frame for protection and decoration.
Checkout these bloggers’ wedding bouquet preservation DIY ideas:
1. Melissa’s adventure in using the pressing and silica gel method from the flowers of her wedding bouquet.
2. Sara hang dry her wedding flowers and keep them in shadow box.
3. Danielle hang dry her wedding flowers and keep them in mason jar.
4. Adorable Duo hang dry her wedding bouquet and decorate on their coffee table.
5. Abby had her wedding bouquet hang dry and then make into Christmas ornaments.
6. Nancy choose to press her wedding flowers and frame them up.
7. Abbey had her wedding bouquet hang dry and decorate in a vase.
8. Lisa preserve her wedding flowers using the silica gel and hang dry method. Check out the stark difference!
9. OJ had her wedding flowers pressed and frame them.
10. Laura hanged her wedding bouquet upside down and store in shadow box.
11. Carla had her wedding bouquet hang dry.
12. Lindsey made potpourri out of the wedding bouquet.
13. Susie turned her wedding bouquet into Christmas ornament.
14. Pamm hang dry her bouquet and then place them in a shadow box.
15. Emily pressed her wedding bouquet and decorate them in a shadow box.
16. Lori dried her wedding bouquet and place them in a shadow box.
These are wedding bouquets preserved by professional:
1. Kristy had her wedding bouquet freeze-dry by professional.
2. Tera had her wedding bouquet preserve by professional.
3. Jessica had her wedding bouquet freeze-dry.
As you can see from the above ideas, brides who seek to be creative can choose either to hang dry the bouquet, pressing or using the silica gel method. Flower preservation companies meanwhile uses freeze drying as well as pressing and silica gel method too. Which ever method you choose make sure it’s the best option to preserve your wedding bouquet as you only have one to spare!
Please share this article in your social media sites with your soon-to-be bride friends. Have you just had your wedding? Did you preserve your wedding bouquet? Which method did you choose?
Now here are some creative ways to use roses in your wedding!