There are several methods you can use to dry flowers for crafts. Some methods involve keeping the shape of the flowers, while others flatten the blossoms. Select the appropriate method, depending on the type of craft project you are making. The pressing method works best if you plan to create wall art, framed jewelry or decoupage treatments. The silica drying method works best to dry flowers for potpourri, arrangements and other three-dimensional designs.
Press Drying Flowers
Snip the flower blossoms from the stems. Sandwich the blossoms between two coffee filters. The coffee filters aid in the drying process better than wax paper or other types of paper.
Slip the coffee filter sandwich between the pages of a large book. A phone book, encyclopedia or dictionary will work well.
Place at least 20 pounds on top of the large book containing the flower blossoms. The weight should be uniform over the top of the book. For example use more books or objects that have at least the same dimensions as the pressing book.
Leave the flowers in the book to press for at least two weeks. Before crafting with the dried pressed flowers, place them on wax paper and spray them with floral glaze. The glaze will help hold the color and the shape. If you plan to decoupage the pressed flowers, no floral glaze is necessary.
Drying Flowers in Silica Gel
Cover the bottom of a bowl with 2 inches of silica gel. Silica gel is available in the floral section of most crafts stores.
Lay the fresh flowers on top of the silica. Gently cover the blossoms and the stems with more silica gel until the flowers are completely covered. Pansies and other flat flowers may be placed face down in the silica; roses and other deep flowers should be placed face up so the gel will support the petals.
Place the lid on the container. Make sure the seal is airtight.
Check the flowers after two days. It could take as long as a week to dry the flowers completely. Check them daily to make sure they are not becoming brittle. Remove the flowers from the silica gel when they are dry.
Spray the dried flowers with floral glaze, if desired.
About this Author
Katherine Kally is a freelance writer specializing in eco-friendly home improvement projects, practical craft ideas and cost effective decorating solutions. Kally's work has been featured on sites across the Web. She holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology from the University of South Carolina and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.