How to Preserve Wedding Bouquet for Shadow Box

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As memorable as the wedding day is, everything that carries the essence of this day is equally as cherishable. The wedding bouquet is one of those things from the big day. As we tend to hold on to pieces that bear memories as long as we can, preserving the bouquet of a wedding has indeed become popular. In this article, we will discuss How to Preserve a Wedding Bouquet for Shadow Box.

Watching the flowers go dead can be sad. But you can choose to preserve the bouquet and showcase it in a shadow box to carry this important accessory throughout your married life. 

There are a lot of preservation methods out there. Depending on how you are keeping the preserved flowers, the preservation method varies. This article will let you know some of the options for preservation if you want to keep it in a shadow box which is a glass-enclosed display case.

You need planning and preparation ahead if you are thinking about preserving your wedding bouquet. Generally, the flowers holding its three dimensional shape after preservation is preferred for showcasing it in a shadow box. But there are other ways to preserve them which may not allow the flowers to retain their original shape. Depending on how you want your shadow box to look like you can choose any. If you would rather like to preserve them by yourself instead of sending them to a professional, hang on, we are going to share methods.

Different Ways to Preserve Wedding Bouquet for Shadow Box

Here are some of the best ways to preserve the wedding bouquet for shadow box.

Air Drying the Whole Bouquet

The most common,easy of all and also an efficient method is air drying the bouquet. This method allows the flower to keep its shape intact and preserve all of the flower including stems. Though the flowers' color will fade. If that is not a concern for you, go ahead. 

  • Remove any paper, ribbons or pins from the bouquet.
  • Tie ribbons to the stems and hang them upside down in a dark, airy and warm place. Avoiding sunlight will protect the colors of the flower as much as possible.
  • Keep them hanging for at least a week.

Microwaving the Flowers

 It is a quick method, though it may sound weird to some people.  What you have to do is-

  • Take a microwave friendly dish or bowl. Use one which you may not use again!
  • Remove the flower from the stem.
  • Use silica gel to cover one inch of the dish. Then place the flower on top. Add some more so the petals don't flatten.
  • Put it in the microwave uncovered.
  • Keep the temperature on low for 2-5 mins and keep an eye on the flowers. Drying time depends on the flower type. It may take longer for some flowers to dry.
  • When the flowers seem dry, take them out. Cover the dish with a lid with a slight opening and keep it like that for 24 hours.
  • Then clean the petals with a brush. You can spray some acrylic spray for protection.

Dry the Flowers Using Silica Gel

The granules of silica gel soaks up the moisture from plants and flowers, causing them to dry out.  This is not the cheapest or quickest way but it keeps the flower closest to its original state with their vibrant color.

  • Take a glass container. Make a base with the gel, keep the flowers on them.
  • Pour silica gel without hampering the flower's shape. Fill the container. Then close it with a lid so it is airtight. Else it can be impacted by mold.
  • Check after a week. If it is dry, take them out gently. Spray them with any artist fixative spray for protection.

Preserve with Epoxy Resin

The result from this method can be stunning. Though working with resin can be tricky, it can be worth the work when you are planning to showcase it in a shadow box. You can use the shadow as the mold or use other molds as you like before you put it in the shadow box.

  • First dry out the flower using any drying out method.
  • Mix equal amounts of resin and catalyst. Resin sets quickly so you need to work fast. Make sure you have made enough mixture as per your need. Mix it as the manufacturer recommends.
  • Then you can dip the flower in the mix. Or keep the flower in a silicone mold then pour the resin on top. If the flower is dipped then hold it for some time so the epoxy gets in between the petals. Then lift the flower and hang it. Cover the surface underneath with newspaper or something to protect the surface.

Press the Flowers

Pressing the flowers is simplest of all, takes some time but adds a new viewpoint to the flower. If you would rather showcase the look of pressed flowers go for it. You can use heavy books for this process if you don't want to spend on a flower presser.

  • Sandwich the parts of the flower you would like to press in two pieces of paper. Keep it inside a heavy book. Close the book.
  • Put more weights on the book. 
  • After a week, check on it. If it is ready as per your liking, take them out.

With this process, the flowers do get more fragile. Make sure to handle them gently afterward.

Using Sand as Moisture Absorber

Sand will draw out moisture from the petals, causing the flower to dry out and be easy to preserve. This is a cheaper option though it can be time-consuming.

  • Cut the flowers from stems in desired length.
  • Place them in a bed of sand, put more sand on top gently so that their shape is not compromised.
  • Keep them as long as they are not dried out. 
  • When they are ready, take them out. To clear tiny grains of sand out of the petals hang them upside down for a while.

Dip in Wax

In this method, the flowers will last up to six to seven months. But the positive point is, you can not set waxed flowers apart from the original flowers in terms of looks. 

  • In a pan, melt paraffin wax in boiling water until it is smooth.
  • Then, turn the stove low so the mixture is not too hot but slightly warm.
  • Dip your blossoms and immediately take them out.
  • Hang them upside down. Wax doesl dry quickly.

Conclusion

You can decorate the shadow box as you like with the preserved bouquet along with other materials from your wedding day. Different preservation methods will give the bouquet a unique look, you may play with the methods way before your wedding day so that you can choose what you like best and then apply that to the precious flowers of the wedding bouquet.

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