Preserve your Bouquet the Artistic Way

If you’d like to keep your bouquet for years without going the dusty, dried-flowers route, here are some fantastic ideas.

Martha Stewart suggests drying and framing  your blossoms, creating a beautiful framed arrangement:

  1. Snip blossoms and lay them on newsprint.
  2. Fold newsprint over to cover, and insert in a flower press (or between the pages of a phone book).
  3. Leave them for 10 to 12 days, until dry and papery.
  4. Use tweezers to transfer the flowers to card stock and arrange. (In the photo, dusty miller leaves and hydrangeas are arranged alone, in pretty grids, and in a heart shape.)
  5. Use tweezers to gently lift each blossom, and a paintbrush to apply a dot of glue to the underside, then press into place.
  6. Let dry, and frame.

For more adventurous pressed flower art, Kate Chu has some amazing designs, like the one below, that you might like to attempt yourself.

After you have dried your flowers using a flower press or between the pages of a large book, here are some more fantastic ways to use them, by wisegeek.com:

Stationery: Choose high-quality paper that enhances the flowers you are using. Using a small paintbrush, apply a thin layer of glue to attach the flowers in a predetermined arrangement to cards, envelopes, or paper. If you apply too much glue, blot the area carefully using a paper towel. Allow the glue to dry thoroughly before using the stationery.

Paperweight or Sun Catcher: Using two identical pieces of plastic or glass, position the flowers on the bottom piece and secure with a small amount of glue. Once the glue is dry, you can place the top piece of plastic or glass in position. For a sun catcher, bind the edges with copper tape and attach a copper wire and suction cup for hanging. To form a paperweight, drill two holes and use binding posts to secure.

Decorated Candle: Apply glue to the back side of each flower and then press gently them onto the candle. If the dried flowers do not lay smooth, wrap firmly with waxed paper and hold in place with tape. Once the glue is dry, remove the paper and tape. Apply a second coat of glue to the candle and then use melted paraffin wax to seal the flowers.

Decorated Lampshade: Use slightly diluted glue to attach the dried flowers to a lampshade. Before the glue dries, place semi-transparent, handmade rice paper over the lampshade. Pat a layer of diluted glue over the paper; do not worry about being neat because creases will create texture.

botanicallampshades.com

There are many other uses for dried flowers. Browse online for more ideas such as bookmarks, wreaths, and doorplates. You can even have your flowers made into mirrors or jewelry!

Note that finished pressed flower arts need to be sealed before displaying, in order to keep flowers away from moisture in the air. Always allow the picture to dry completely before sealing. For various methods of sealing your flower art, click here or here.