How to preserve flowers as decoration

Whether it’s preserving wedding flowers or a single rose, knowing how to dry and press them can make flowers a wonderful memento. Learn how by reading our easy guide.

Updated 19 July 2019

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Fresh flowers fade quickly, but dried flowers make a decorative feature that lasts much longer. Whether you want to preserve a certain meaningful bouquet or you just want to have a go at creating a gorgeous, long-lasting centrepiece, drying and preserving flowers is a fun, productive weekend activity. Here we’ve got everything you need to know when it comes to how to preserve flowers, with three different techniques to try.

Preserve smaller flowers by pressing them and larger flowers by hanging them.  

Method 1: Pressing flowers

If you’re wondering how to preserve dried flowers this is a great way to get started. You can buy a specialist flower press and follow the instructions it suggest – or, just use the biggest, heaviest book you can find. Try it with single flowers and then combine the results to decorate stationery, letters and other materials.

  1. Open your book in the middle and place pieces of baking paper on both pages
  2. Lay the flowers on the baking paper, making sure they don’t overlap
  3. Close the book, then place another heavy book or a weight on top
  4. Leave it for around 10 days
  5. The flowers will dry out and be pressed flat, making them ideal for craft projects

Method 2: Hanging flowers – ideal for preserving wedding flowers

If you’re wondering how to preserve wedding bouquet, this is a great approach as it keeps the whole bunch of flowers together:

  1. Keep the flowers in a bunch
  2. Hang upside down
  3. Ensure they are out of direct sunlight
  4. Make sure the area is well ventilated
  5. Wait 2-3 weeks and voila, beautifully dried flowers

Method 3: Microwaving flowers

Microwaving is the best way to preserve flowers if you don’t have much time. This technique can be done in just a few minutes so saves you waiting around.

  1. Place the flowers in a microwaveable bowl one at a time
  2. Cover with four cups of cat litter
  3. Microwave on high for 3 minutes each, checking regularly
  4. Let the cat litter cool
  5. Remove the flowers and brush gently to get rid of any remaining litter

Now you know how to preserve a rose, daisy or any other kind of flower, nothing is stopping you! Choose one of these methods you’ll have a beautiful memento that you can keep for the long term.

Key steps

  1. Choose the flowers you want to dry out
  2. Decide on one of the methods above
  3. Follow our guide to hanging, pressing or microwaving
  4. Enjoy your beautiful dried flowers 
Originally published 3 May 2019