While nothing really compares to fresh flowers, one of the most heartbreaking things is to throw your flowers away when they aren’t fresh anymore. That’s why some smart folks out there have thought about drying them, which automatically gives the flowers a new lease of life. In a different way, of course.
It’s true that some home decor trends might come and go, but keeping your favorite blooms is one of the easiest crafts you can learn. So why not? It adds a ton of appeal to your rooms, and you won’t even have to spend a fortune!
Dried flowers can be an amazing addition to your home, as they always look lovely and last very long. You can either preserve them by hanging them upside down somewhere dark and dry for a couple of weeks, or you can press them in your books. We’ve made a list of 4 efficient ways to make your dry flowers last for longer, so have a go and see which one you’d prefer!
One of the most common ways to dry your blooms is air drying. It’s elementary to be done, and you will rapidly see the results, as it only takes three weeks. We tried this trick with a wonderful bouquet that had limonium, statice, carnations, many roses, chrysanthemums, and one or two hypericums.
Later on, we also added snapdragons, as we wanted to test and see how they fared.
You have to know from the start that a couple of stems might dry better than others. For example, lilies aren’t so good at drying, mainly because they have a lot of moisture in them.
So if you want to try this technique, we’d recommend you go with something else, such as statice, limonium, roses, beautiful carnations, and even chrysanthemums. Then, you have to decide just how long you would want each stem to be, then remove all the extra foliage from each one.
Divide the branches into each type, then tie them together with a string, making sure you secure them tightly because the stems might shrink. You will know after a couple of weeks, they are completely dried. Carefully take them down and spray the branches with hairspray. It will preserve the flowers.
Use a flower press
It is thought that flower pressing first started in ancient Egypt. However, it has probably become better known in the 1500s, because of the Oshibana, the art of using pressed flowers to create art.
This craft has become increasingly popular in Victorian England, being brought straight from Japan by those who traveled a lot or had various trading businesses. It’s a completely different way of drying flowers, and you don’t even need to get a traditional-style flower press.
For example, we bought a beautiful bouquet (Valentine’s-themed) which had 23 red roses, five chamelaucium, and tree magnolias. It was SO big! We unwrapped the bouquet and pressed the flowers within the pages of a book. Of course, we added a pile of books on top for a bit more weight – it’s more effective this way.
However, if you DO have a flower press, that’s great! Gently, undo the binds on your flower press. You might find there all kinds of screws or even a strong rubber band. Take each flower head and gently add it to each layer.
Truth be told, three weeks should be more than enough to see some results. With great care, open up your flower press and have a look at the petals. If you’re out of patience (which we totally understand), you could easily iron your flower heads between two pieces of paper, on the lowest heat. You will definitely LOVE the results, and we’re looking forward to hearing all the details about the process and how it went!
Let them dry in the vase
This is the perfect alternative if you can’t hang your flowers upside down. Basically, this method has been accidentally done by most of us at some point. It’s not an intricate process.
In fact, it’s exactly the opposite: you just buy the flowers, put them in the vase, and forget about them for a LOONG time. Also, it’s worth mentioning that you have to leave the flowers in the vase with water, as it works especially well when drying hydrangeas.
Try silica gel
For this technique, you will need silica gel, but also an airtight container. And for that, you can always go to Amazon and get yourself a practical kit. Arrange your blooms by removing the leaves and gently strumming the stems.
Also, carefully pop into the airtight container filled with silica gel. Place them face up, then add more silica and cover the flowers completely. Leave the container in a dry, cool place for up to three days. Then, remove the flowers from the container, gently brush them with a paintbrush and remove the gel from the petals.
How do you dry flowers and still keep the color?
Hang the flowers upside-down in a dark, dry room, that’s also well-ventilated. This way, you’ll get to dry them while also preserving their color. This drying procedure might take two to three weeks to complete.
Then, remove the dried flowers and spritz them with hairspray to protect them for longer. One of the most efficient ways you could try to make sure that dried flowers keep their color is to keep them out of the sunlight right after they’re cut. Sunlight exposure could end up bleaching the flowers, causing them to turn into a creamy brown shade.
What can you spray on dried flowers to preserve them?
Probably the best and cheapest option for a good preserving spray is to use your…hairspray. That’s mainly because it’s great at preventing moisture from landing on the flower’s surface, without coloring the petals an unpleasant, yellowish color.
Your dried flowers could last longer if you simply use a sealing spray. This way, you’ll get to preserve any sentimental flowers from your bouquet, to enjoy them for longer. You can also use a product to dry the petals’ dampness.
What types of flowers can you air dry?
Probably the best flower you can air dry is the hydrangea. That’s mainly because this method will allow the flower to dry and remain in its original rounded shape, which makes an outstanding decorating piece for your home.
If you want to get the full effect of dried hydrangea, it would be recommended to tie the plant stems at the bottom, and hang them upside down in a dried, dark place. There are two basic methods that you can use to dry a hydrangea. First, there’s the hydration method, which is more efficient when it comes to the proper preservation of the flowers. Secondly, there’s the classic (and faster) one, which we mentioned above.
If you’re going for the hydration method, you should keep one or two inches of the stems in fresh water, and leave some space between the flowers, for proper air circulation. Also, make sure you keep them away from too much sunlight, as it might bleach the petals. Darker hydrangea heads are known to keep the colors better, so you need to pick those varieties that have deeper shades.
If you enjoyed reading about crafts, we have something else in store for you: 7 Important Must-Know DIYs for Every Homeowner