Flowers have been part of many funeral traditions for thousands of years. Not only do they symbolise the life cycle from birth to death but, they also bring about a sense of comfort. Funeral flowers and funeral wreaths are a beautiful way to express sympathy and to celebrate a loved one’s life in a meaningful way.
However, when the funeral proceedings are over, it can be difficult to part with the flowers. These eight creative ideas are a combination of practical and sentimental ways to repurpose funeral flowers.
Drying and framing flowers sent in memory of your loved one can be a special token of remembrance.
What paper do I use to dry the flowers?
It is important to dry the flowers out as quickly as possible to prevent browning. This can be done by using newspaper, blotting paper, printing paper, flat cardboard or facial tissue.
Using a book
The easiest method of flower pressing requires no equipment other than absorbent paper and a heavy book. Pigments in the flowers may stain the pages of the book, so it is advised to use paper on each side of the flowers being used.
- Step one: Place the flower between two pieces of paper, and place them within the pages of the book. Make sure the flowers are spaced out so the moisture from one flower doesn’t transfer to another.
- Step two: Use a heavy weight or another book to press the flowers.
- Step three: After a couple of weeks the flowers should be completely dry. Be very careful when removing the flowers from the book as they become very delicate.
- Step four: When the flowers are dry you’ll be able to arrange and trim them accordingly so that they’re able to fit into a glass frame.
Using a wooden flower press
There are a number of flower press kits available online, which will have their own set of instructions. But if you already have one, here are the steps to follow:
- Step one: Before the flowers go into the press, make sure you trim off any unwanted leaves and brush off any dirt.
- Step two: The flowers will need to go into the press as quickly as possible to avoid browning. Open your flower press and remove all the cardboard inserts except for the bottom. You’ll want to distribute the flowers evenly throughout the press, starting at the bottom layer, putting your flowers on top of the cardboard inserts.
- Step three: Close the press, tightening the screws of all four corners. For best results leave the press undisturbed for two to three weeks.
Pressed flower cards
You may be feeling out of touch with close friends and family after arranging your loved one’s funeral. Creating beautiful handmade cards with pressed flowers from your loved one’s funeral is a personal and sentimental way of expressing your love and gratitude to those closest to you.
How beautiful would it be to have the natural fragrance of flowers lingering in your home? Potpourri has been used since Medieval times when dried lavender was used to freshen bedrooms and laundry.
To make homemade potpourri you will need:
Flowers, baking tray, parchment paper, scissors and home fragrance oils
- Step one: Preheat the oven to 90˚C
- Step two: Cover a baking tray with parchment paper. Remove the flowers from their stems and seperate the petals. Place on baking tray.
- Step three: Add 10 to 15 drops of home fragrance oils to the petals, and pop the potpourri in the oven for a minimum of two hours.
- Step four: When the potpourri is ready, add a few more drops of oil.
- Step five: Once the petals have cooled down, place the potpourri in a bowl or small silk satchel.
Make a wreath or centerpiece
Beautiful flowers deserve to go to beautiful people. Why not make little remembrance bouquets for other people who also held your loved one dear. Or, you could give flowers out to hospitals and care homes. You could involve the whole family in making different, creative arrangements. It’s a special gesture to let someone know they’re in your thoughts.
Make a DIY floral candle
Lighting a candle in honour of your loved one has been a funeral tradition for thousands of years. But, lighting a candle with their funeral flowers melted into the wax, can be an extra special tribute.
Calmful Living has an easy-follow-recipe to make your very own DIY floral candle:
You will need: a small cooking pot, an old candle, flowers, a small glass jar, one wick and an empty can
Step one: Place a can into a pot with two inches of boiling water. Melt the wax from the old candle in the can.
Step two: Place a wick in the centre of a glass jar looping it around a stick or pencil so that it stays in place.
Step three: Place the petals of the flowers into the edges of the jar using a little bit of wax.
Step four: Gently pour the melted wax into the jar and leave it to cool.
For a more lasting tribute, which you can return to year after year, why not create a special memorial garden for your loved one.