When it comes to sympathy flowers, you might be left with an abundance of them after the funeral. Facing the loss of a loved one is one of the most difficult things we must endure. Going through that loss is intense, and many emotions may surface. The presence of flowers decaying is often not conducive to the healing process.
For some, throwing away sympathy arrangements and funeral flowers can almost make you feel as if you are losing your loved one all over again. The thought of losing anything might be too much during such a sad time.
Preserving those flowers and making them into something different to celebrate your loved one or a memento that you can cherish and hold onto can help you alleviate some grief. The activity itself gives you some time away from your thoughts and something to concentrate on that is relaxing and not stressful. Also, this way, you will not have to go through the act of discarding those once-beautiful flowers.
Before we begin sharing ideas for projects involving preserved funeral flowers, we want to mention a necessary piece of advice is to never freeze flowers. If you try to freeze them, they will turn to mush once they defrost and need to be discarded.
However, if you keep those flowers away from the freezer and only use the correct appliances, preserving them is pretty easy!
Dried Petal Potpourri
Potpourri is best accomplished by drying the flowers. There are several ways to do this, the easiest being laying the flowers out on paper towels and turning them once a day. You can also hang the flowers upside down. Keep them in a warm place with good air circulation.
For a quick method, you can place the flowers on a sheet with parchment paper and bake in the oven at 200 degrees for two hours.
To strengthen the scent of your potpourri, you can also visit a craft store to purchase fixatives, and you can even add a few drops of essential oils.
Floral Forget-Me-Not Bath Salts
If potpourri isn’t your thing, but you like the idea of dried flowers, you can also make some floral bath salts. Simply add the dried flowers to some dead sea salt and Epsom salt and add some essential oil of your choosing, and you will have luxurious floral bath salts. If you worry about the floral material clogging the drain, you can always purchase muslin tea bags to fill with your bath salt ingredients.
Pressed Flower Frames, Bookmarks, Candles and Christmas Ornaments
Pressing flowers is as easy as set it and forget it if you choose the old-fashioned method. You can simply take the flower, place it on a piece of paper, cover it with a separate piece of paper then take a heavy book and place it on top to finish the pressing process. This may take patience as it can take seven to ten days for the flower to dry out completely. Don’t peek at your petals until that amount of time has elapsed.
For who are those less patient, you can also accomplish having pressed flowers by microwaving them. You will set the flowers in between sheets parchment paper, and instead of a book, you will place a plate on top. Nuke them for 30 seconds at a time until you are satisfied with the result.
Once you have your pressed flowers, there are many keepsakes you can create with acrylic matte medium from a craft store. You can brush the medium onto the outside of candles, on a bookmark, a Christmas ornament or inside a frame to adhere your pressed flowers to as decoration and a lovely, lasting memory.
These are just a few things you can do with funeral and sympathy flowers. If you do not wish to do any DIY activities with the flowers, you can always seek out a company to either preserve the flowers or make jewelry and other keepsakes for you.
It is also perfectly acceptable to not want reminders. People handle loss in different ways, and whatever you want to do to facilitate your own grieving process is okay. If you do not wish to have any reminders of your loss in the form of repurposed funeral flowers, an option is to offer them to others.
You may have friends and relatives of the deceased who would want some of the flowers, or you can even contact some non-profits to inquire about donating the flowers. If they are still reasonably fresh, there are many ways to use them to bring happiness to others in times of need. There may be other uses for them once they are decaying by companies that use them for composting.
If you would like to discuss flowers for any occasion or purpose, our dedicated floral experts at Oakbrook Florist serving areas around Palo Alto, CA, are always glad to help!