Your wedding day is special. It doesn’t matter whether you had a huge party or you had a COVID-safe wedding, like one via Zoom or one with a limited guest list via a self-uniting marriage.
It’s something you want to remember.
One way to remember it is by preserving your wedding bouquet. Today, we’ll go through a bunch of possible ways to keep something that’s temporarily in bloom beautiful for life.
How to preserve your wedding bouquet
There are a couple ways to preserve your wedding bouquet.
The first, and most expensive, is to have your fresh flower bouquet professionally preserved after the fact. A lot of times when you go this route, the bouquet will stay just that: A bouquet. It will probably be stored in glass, and will probably run you a pretty penny.
A more frugal route is to dry your bouquet yourself. You could opt to press each individual flower between the pages of a thick, heavy book. Or place your bouquet in an empty vase until the flowers dry.
But the best way is to use a flower and herb drying rack. Ideally you’ll store this in a dry area of your home that’s typically dark. Your flowers will be ready in about two to four weeks.
What to Do With Your Dried Wedding Bouquet.
After your bouquet is dry, there are tons of creative projects you can do to help preserve the memories of your matrimony.
Make a Shadow Box
One option is to put your flowers behind glass yourself. Simply get a shadow box, like this one from Michael’s, open it up, and place your flowers inside. Depending on the size of your box, you can either keep your bouquet whole or clip the stems of each original flower, arranging them in a new display pattern.
Make a Christmas Ornament
Another cute way to remember your wedding is to take one of the roses from your bouquet before it’s dried. You want the petals to be flexible and supple.
Then, put them inside a clear Christmas ornament from a craft store. Gently slip each petal into the opening at the top. Once you’re happy with the fill, leave the ornament out and open in a dry place for a couple weeks.
Once everything’s all dried out, install the top of the ornament. Now every Christmas, you’ll be able to take a minute and reminisce about your beginnings as a couple.
You could do this by drying the flowers first, too, especially if you’re worried about moisture building up inside the ornament.
If you think each bud of your bouquet will be small enough to fit into the top of the ornament without crumbling, you could try putting the entire bud inside that way, too. It’s a little riskier, though. The petals could shatter.
Make Potpourri Bouquets
Want a daily reminder of your vows?
Make a ‘potpourri’ bouquet that you can store in a place you’ll see it everyday, like your clothes drawer or jewelry box.
After your flowers are dry, crush up the petals. Or don’t. Some might get crushed in the process whether you want them to or not.
Then, get a square of decorative gauze. You can find some at Michael’s, but if you’re being uber frugal, looking someplace like your local reuse store is also a possibility as a ‘scrap’ may be enough.
Place your crushed petals in a pile in the center. Pull the edges of the gauze together, creating a bundle full of flower petals at the bottom. Tie a ribbon around the gauze just above the top of the flowers.
Then, trim the ribbon and any excess gauze. Now you have a nice little potpourri bundle full of your wedding flowers.
Make a Japanese Herbarium
Maybe you don’t need your flowers to last forever. Maybe just a year would be enough.
Or maybe you’ve already done one of the ‘forever’ projects, and still have few flowers left over.
In these cases, you might want to make a Japanese Herbarium. First, you’ll dry your flowers.
Then, you’ll place them in a glass container. Traditional herbariums are on the taller and relatively skinny side, but really, you can use any container with a lid or cork.
TIP BASED ON MY OWN PAST FAILURES: On past projects like this, I’ve tried using glass baby food jars. In my experience, they do not work. They’re only really meant to be opened; the lid won’t completely fit back on. Even if you use glue, there’s a huge risk of leaks.
Your flowers are going to be fragile. Be careful putting them in, or the petals could crumble. Once they’re safely inside the glass, you can gently use tools like tweezers or wooden skewers to arrange them to your liking.
Keep layering flowers until you’re to the top. Or until they’re as high as you’d like them to be.
Then, fill the jar with baby oil or mineral oil.
Your herbarium will look beautiful in the sun. But the UV rays will degrade the colors, and eventually the flowers themselves will degrade. You usually get about six months to a year out of this display method.
Create anniversary bath bombs
Want a super sweet romantic tradition for your anniversary?
After you’ve dried your flowers, use them to make a batch or two of DIY bath bombs. You can get an all-inclusive kit to make your own from almost any major retailer.
But you could also opt to make your own from scratch. Here’s a great bath bomb recipe. She hides toy dinosaurs in her bath bombs.
You don’t need to do all that. Instead, just before your mold your bath bombs, throw some dried flower petals into the mix.
Store them in a special place, and use one or two each year for a candle-lit, rose petal bath.