A wedding bouquet is made of flowers specifically selected to complement the theme of the occasion and to accentuate a bride's dress on her special day. Such a bouquet should not be tossed in the air and forgotten about but carefully preserved and displayed in your home. Spend endless hours with your children and grandchildren, narrating stories of your wedding while using the preserved bouquet as a reference.
Preserving Wedding Bouquets
Photograph your bouquet so you can refer to it after you dry the flowers.
Remove the decorative bouquet holder, or any clasp holding the flowers together, the decorative lace and the floral tape from the stems to loosen them, and open the bouquet. Spread out the flowers in front of you.
Lift each flower and cut off excess stem length, leaving only 2 inches under each flower head. Place similar flowers together. Repeat the procedure with any foliage, such as leaves, ferns or baby's breath.
Purchase shallow plastic containers with tight-fitting lids from a home department store and silica gel from a craft store. Keep the height of the flowers in mind when buying the containers, since the flowers will be immersed completely. The number of containers will depend on the amount of same-type flowers.
Fill half of each container with silica gel, and immerse a flower into it. Hold it on one side as you lower another flower of the same type into it as well, but make sure the flowers do not touch. All of the flowers in the container should be the same type. Add more silica gel into each container so each flower is immersed in it completely. Make sure you do this slowly and carefully so the blooms retain their shape.
Replace the lid on each container, pushing it tightly so it seals completely.
Place the containers in a cool, dry location, such as a garage, on a kitchen counter or in a basement, and do not move them so the flowers set. Wait three to four days before checking the flowers. They should be dry to the touch, with no moisture. If you feel they are still too moist, then replace the lid and let them dry further for another three days. The entire drying process takes a week to complete.
Remove the flowers from the containers, and set them in front of you. Attach 3 to 4 inches of florist's wire to each stem to give it the same height it was before you cut off the excess stem.
Use the photograph of your bouquet as a reference to arrange the flowers the same way in the bouquet holder. Rearrange them so the bouquet closely resembles the photograph.