How to Dry Prom Flowers

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Attending your prom usually includes fancy attire, pictures, a lifetime of memories and beautiful flowers. Preserve your prom flowers, typically a corsage or boutonniere, as a keepsake and physical reminder of the night by drying them once the prom is over. Decide how you'd like to display your flowers or where you'll keep them, such as in an album, a scrapbook, in a case or shadowbox. That will help you decide which method is the most ideal for you to dry your flowers.

Things You'll Need

  • Rubber band
  • Heavy book(s)
  • Clean paper bags, newspaper or waxed paper
  • Drying agent (silica gel, pellets or powder)
  • Airtight container
  • Paint brush

Air Drying

  • Wrap a rubber band around the stems just under the heads. Avoid using string, as the flower stems may shrink during the drying process, causing them to fall or become damaged.

  • Hang the flowers upside down in a well-ventilated room that isn't humid or bright. Dry, darker rooms work best. The drying time is typically two to three weeks.

  • Remove the flowers and display them where you desire. Don't remove them until you're sure they are completely dried.

Pressing

  • Place the flowers between two clean paper bags, pieces of newspaper or waxed paper. You may have to take the corsage or boutonniere apart in order to press the flowers only, as embellishments may get in the way and not flatten.

  • Place the flowers--still sandwiched between the paper--in the center of a large, heavy book, or between two large, heavy books. Put the books somewhere that isn't humid and where they won't be disturbed.

  • Pressing flowers typically takes two to four weeks. Once they are completely pressed, you can add them to a scrapbook, photo album or picture frame.

Drying Agent

  • Remove the stems and decorations from the flowers if you are preserving only the flowers. The results may be more desirable by disassembling the arrangement.

  • Spread a layer of silica gel in your drying container, at least an inch deep. Place the flowers on top of the gel so they are not touching one another.

  • Carefully add another layer of silica gel on top of the flowers. Seal the container, which should be airtight.

  • Remove the flowers after the recommended drying time (usually two to seven days). Gently remove any excess gel that's still on the flower petals using a paintbrush.

Tips & Warnings

  • The flowers may dry better if you disassemble your arrangement. Reassemble it when you're done using florist wire and tape to re-create stems if you desire.
  • Make sure the flowers are dried before removing them from your drying method. If the petals "give" or move when you press them, or they're still flexible, the flowers are not completely dry yet.
  • Keep silica gel out of the reach of young children. Save the gel to use again.

References

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