Not every wedding needs flowers… And not every bride needs a bouquet. But if you are involving real florals in your wedding, then chances are, you’re spending a lot of money on them. Which is all fine and dandy… but that’s a lot of money to spend on something that you only get to enjoy for a day.
Flowers are gorgeous. I love them. If I were wildly affluent, I’d have a new bouquet on my table every week. But most of us aren’t exactly eager to dump hundreds to thousands of dollars on something that will (probably) only be used for a few hours.
If you want to get the most out of your flowers, try one of these post-wedding suggestions to preserve your blooms:
Donate them. I’ve seen a lot of people donating their flowers to hospitals, long-term care residences, retirement homes, and shelters in the last few years. This is a beautiful way to let others enjoy the flowers that helped make your wedding as stunning as it was!
Coasters. You can find resin coasters all over the internet. Putting your flowers into a set of coasters is a wonderful way to add something pretty and functional to your home.
Resin Art/Weights. Like the resin idea, but not a fan of coasters? You can easily put your flowers in a different mould and create a bookend, paperweight, or sculpture (or you can pay someone to do this for you… trust me, there are PLENTY of folks who work with resin out there)!
Trays, Bowls, or Plates. You know what else you can do with resin (or glass, or other plastics)? Serving pieces. Whether it’s a big, elaborate bowl or a serving tray, pressed flowers look gorgeous in serveware.
Jewellery. Not to sound like a broken record, but resin jewellery’s really cool. Whether you’re into statement pieces or something subtle, you can put pieces of your wedding flowers into a pendant, a bracelet, a ring, earrings, cufflinks, or something else entirely!
Frame Your Bouquet. I’ve seen a handful of vendors and artists who take flowers from your wedding, press them between two sheets of glass, and put them in a frame to create a beautiful piece of art that you can hang in your home. If you haven’t seen this done before, check it out on social media- it’s worth the look.
Photography. Maybe you just want to preserve the image or memory of your flowers, rather than the actual flowers themselves. Get out your camera or have a professional take some shots of your flowers- No, it’s not weird- and have the result blown up and hung on your wall. The photo doesn’t even have to look like a bouquet: You can have them spread out or rearranged however you like. You can even pose with them, if that’s your thing!
Press Your Flowers. The tried-and-true way of preserving your favourite flowers. If you really want to go heavy on the sentimentality, you can press them in your wedding album (as long as you pile a few heavier books on top of it).
Holiday Ornaments. You can easily find clear, hollow ornaments at craft stores when it gets close to the holidays (or whenever they start putting the Christmas decorations out… so, July). I actually saved my Maid of Honour bouquet from my dear friends’ wedding and did this, myself- it’s really easy! All you need to do is fill a transparent glass or plastic ornament with the petals (or full blooms) from your bouquet, centrepieces, etc. and seal it up with some appropriate glue or epoxy. Just make sure you seal it well! If you want to add a little extra something, you can paint or print the wedding date on the ball, or (as I did with the ribbon from my bouquet) take a piece of fabric and glue it around the top or middle of the ornament.
Compost your flowers. I know… Most people probably wouldn’t consider this to be particularly romantic or sentimental. But you know what? Composting your wedding flowers is symbolic and eco-friendly as hell. You’re using something beautiful and celebratory to nurture and feed the garden that you and your partner(s) can start together, once you’re married. Waste not, want not, right?
Make candles with them. If you’re like me and you’re mildly obsessed with candles, this is a fantastic option to make sure that your flowers see more use than just decorating your wedding. You can heat the sides of a candle and roll it in the petals of your flowers, or (if you have the time and inclination) you can make your own candles from scratch with the petals and leaves of your wedding flowers. You can mix them into the wax before you pour, or you can arrange them strategically on the top, bottom, or sides of the mould. If you really want to go the extra mile, you can create scented candles!
Display your flowers. Straight to the point- dried flowers, if kept in a sealed case, can last for up to ten years. If you like the look of dried blooms and have the space for it, you can always preserve your flowers as-is and put them in an appropriate vase or container.