If you haven’t noticed recently dried flowers are everywhere in home decor! It’s definitely one of the biggest home trends at the moment. I remember going to East London’s flower market when the lockdown had eased last year. There was a stand selling dried flowers and it was the busiest flower stand in the market! The thing is it’s very simple to do yourself. You can either let nature do it’s thing or there are a few other ways in speeding up the process. I’ve been looking into the best ways of drying flowers for myself, so here are the best ways of drying flowers.
Depending on the type of flowers and what you’ll be using them for different methods will work best. Always pick fresh flowers when preserving and drying your flowers for the best results.
1. Air Drying
The simplest method for drying your flowers is take a few flower stems and tie them with some rope or twine and hang them upside down to dry. Preferably keep in a darker area like closet to stop the colour from fading in direct sunlight. Make sure that wherever you store the flowers it isn’t to humid.
This method for drying flowers does take a couple of weeks. But they’re so pretty when completely dried! Use a single stem for a wabi sabi vibe or a few stems for a vintage romantic feel.
2. Pressing Flowers
If you’re looking to do something a little more creative with your dried flowers like a piece of art, then pressing your flowers is a good option. This method will take a couple of weeks to complete but there’s not much to it. All you need is some heavy books for applying the pressure.
Open the book and put in a piece of paper to protect the pages of the book and the flowers. Close the book and put a couple more heavy books on top to increase the weight.
Flowers with a high water content like roses don’t work well with this method. I once tried to press a rose and just got a mouldy mess a couple of weeks later! For pressing larger and thicker flowers like roses or peonies individually pick the petals off instead. Or try taking out the middle of the flower which will reduce the water content but you should still get the overall shape of the whole flower.
3. Silica Gel
Silica gel is a drying agent you can get from your local craft shop. Use a shallow plastic container and place a layer of the silica crystals at the bottom about 1.5 inches, then place your flower blooms on top. (This is method is only for the blooms no stems). Cover the flower blooms with another layer of crystals on top and seal with the lid for the container.
Using the silica gel takes 2 – 7 days depending on the flowers you’ve chosen. This method is good if you would like a softer texture for your dried flowers and the best colour retention.
Using the microwave was interesting technique I found out for drying flowers. Place your flowers in between two pieces of kitchen roll and put heavy plate on top of kitchen roll. Turn on the microwave for 10 – 30 second intervals depending on the power setting of your microwave.
Make sure you check on the flowers after each interval to make sure the flowers aren’t scorched and crumbling. When you feel the flowers are dry enough, leave them to cool.
5. Oven Bake
Oven baking your flowers is best for more creative uses like potpourri or other creative projects. If you haven’t the time for air drying or pressing and you don’t mind a bit of loss in colour then baking is a good option.
Remove all the leaves and cut stems off so only the top blooms are left. Then spread flowers on a baking rack and put on a low heat for a couple of hours. For a convection oven set the temperature around 175 degrees. 150 to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. The smaller the flowers the less time they’ll take. If you have a mixture of small and large flower blooms check on them every 3o minutes to make sure they don’t burn. And take out the smaller flowers first. The larger blooms should take no longer than 3 hours on a low setting.
If you’d rather just buy some dried flower bouquets, stems and arrangements to choose from…
Are you a lover of fresh flowers or dried flowers for home decor? Or does it depend on your mood and the season of the year? Let me know if you’ve tried any of the dried flower methods in the comments below!