How Do You Preserve Flowers (Easy DIY with Video)

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Those flowers might look stunning when you first receive them. However, try as you may, you can’t keep them fresh forever. Sooner or later, their color will fade and lose their appeal.

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Is it possible to enjoy their company for more than a few days? How do you preserve flowers?

Thankfully, there are several methods to freeze your favorite bloom in time. In this crazy creations post, I’ll show you the easiest way to preserve your flowers with Modge Podge!

How Do You Preserve Flowers Video

How to Preserve Flowers Step-by-Step Instructions

Drying flowers is a fantastic way to preserve their vibrant shades. It involves slowly removing the moisture while maintaining the flower’s condition to keep its color.

You can then upcycle them onto a vase and place them in any spot in your home that needs a stylish touch.

Let me walk you through the steps below.

Step 1: Pick Your Flowers

I cut a variety of flowers I was wanting to preserve.

The first step is to choose your flowers. Cut the flower below the stem at your desired length. Then, remove the excess foliage using a sharp blade. 

Here’s a pro tip:

Choose flowers that haven’t reached their peak bloom. They often retain the most color and will remain vibrant after drying.

Step 2: Dry Your Flowers

I laid them onto a paper towel and placed another paper towel on top.

Next, you’ll need to dry your flowers.

Lay them on paper towels and cover them with another paper towel. Then, place a heavy item on top, like a thick book, to press and flatten the flowers.

Alternatively, you could use wax paper or parchment paper, I have used both.

I placed a heavy item on top of the flowers. This will press them to flatten them. Keep them this way for a few days.

Keep them pressed for a few days to a couple of weeks. The goal is to remove the moisture and dry the foliage out.

I carefully took off the paper towel to reveal the flowers.

Once dried, carefully peel the paper towel to avoid damaging the flora.

Step 3: Clean the Vase Surface

I cleaned my old vase with rubbing alcohol and let that dry.

Next, get your vase and clean its surface using rubbing alcohol. This step will eliminate mold and parasites, which can damage your dried flowers.

After cleaning, let the surface dry for a few minutes.

My mom had given me a peel and stick dragonfly decal, so I followed the directions and placed this on one side of my vase.

I received a peel-and-stick dragonfly decal from my mother, so I placed it on the vase to add some fun touch!

Step 4: Coat the Surface with Mod Podge

On the opposite side I painted on a coat of Mod Podge onto the vase.

Once cleaned, paint a thin layer of Mod Podge on the side where you plan to stick the flowers. Use a clean paintbrush for this step. 

Step 5: Press the Flower on the Vase

I carefully painted another coat of Mod Podge over the top of the vase and flowers.

After the initial coating, press the flowers onto the smooth surface of the vase. Taking care not to damage their form, arrange the flowers as you see fit.

I placed the flowers onto the vase as I wanted them.

Paint another coat of Mod Podge sealer over the top of the vase and flowers. But do it carefully to avoid damaging the bloom with the bristles!

Step 6: Let the Flower Dry

I let it dry and then did a second coat and let that dry as well.

Lastly, let your masterpiece dry for a few minutes. Mod Podge usually takes 15 to 20 minutes to dry on paper, depending on the thickness of the coat. But as you’re using the varnish on a ceramic or glass, I recommend leaving the vase to dry for at least 24 hours.

Here is the completed vase from the dragonfly side view.

For the final touch, paint a second coat and let that dry as well. It’ll produce a lustrous coat you’ll surely love as I did!

How Do You Preserve Flowers Video

Here's the opposite view.

Does Mod Podge Seal Dried Flowers?

Yes, the Mod Podge will seal the dried flowers. It’s a non-toxic sealer, adhesive, and finish, perfect for as delicate a job as protecting dried blooms.

Here’s what the upcycled vase with preserved flowers looks like after drying:

A fashionable vase with a dried flower decor like this is incredibly versatile. You can use it as a regular flower vase or something to hold your candles, pencils, and more.

Aside from sealing dried flowers, Mod Podge is a fantastic craft supply with plenty of other uses. Any arts and crafts project that needs gluing, finishes, and varnishes calls for a Modge Podge!

I can still use this as a vase or I can use it as a pencil, utensil, candle holder, etc

How Do You Preserve Flowers Q & A

What Do You Use to Preserve Real Flowers?

There are plenty of ways to preserve a flower. Air-drying and pressing are the more traditional approaches, but some use modern techniques, too!

Here are some of the best methods you can use to preserve real flowers:

  • Dry them in a microwave
  • Cure them in epoxy resin (this can be tricky not to get air bubbles and might require multiple layers of resin. You’ll also need additional tools a silicone mold, and it takes time for resin to cure. Add them along with some resin to jewelry, make sure you use both the resin cure or hardner parts A & B to mix them well.
  • Dry them with silica gel or silica sand
  • Let the flowers dry and turn them into potpourri
  • Dip them in paraffin wax
  • Air-dry them upside down on a hanger
  • Add petals to a candle, by melting them into the wax.

How Long Preserved Flowers Last?

Dried flowers can last a long time. Cared for properly, they can withstand exposure for two to three years before crumbling.

Flowers with coating can last a tad longer, though. Protected from air and moisture, they can survive five to six years, with some even reaching decades!

Here is the completed vase as a candle holder.

What to Do with Preserved Flowers?

There are other creative uses for dried flowers other than sticking them on a vase. For one, you can arrange them on a vase, set them up in your living room, and enjoy their presence year-round.

Want to share your love of flower arts with your friends? Add a piece of two of your dried flowers on your gift wraps for a unique way to show your appreciation. There’s no limit to how creative you can be with these artworks.

Spray your roses and flowers with hairspray and let them dry out. The hairspray helps them last longer and then as the flowers dry helps preserve them.

What is the best spray to preserve fresh flowers?

Applying hairspray is an excellent practice when drying fresh flowers. The coat of hairspray can protect the flora from moisture damage and help maintain their form and color.

How to preserve flowers with hairspray?

Spray an even amount of hairspray on the dried flowers’ surface. Coating three layers of aerosol hairspray to your dried flowers can help preserve their colors better.

How do you dry real flowers?

You can press flowers as I did and described above. It’s an easy technique and doesn’t require specialized tools or steps for drying.

Air drying is another method worth checking out. In this approach, you arrange the flowers in a bouquet and hang them upside down in a dark but dry area for two to four weeks.

Next I placed the leaves onto the Mod Podge.

How do you preserve leaves?

Preserving leaves is more painless than drying flowers. You can press-dry them, dip them in wax, soak them in glycerin, or laminate them. Check out my guide about preserving leaves for more information!

How do you dry flowers and keep their color?

One trick to keep as much color for your dried flowers is to cut them before they’re fully open. Drying them in a well-ventilated area away from sunlight also helps them retain much of their pigment.

How To Preserve Fresh Flowers Permanently with Modge Podge?  This post will show you how to cut, dry, and preserve your flowers with Mod Podge.

How do you keep pressed flowers from fading?

The sun is your enemy when it comes to pressed or dried flowers. So, keeping your artwork away from the sun’s glare is essential to keep it from fading. Spraying a UV-protectant hairspray is also an excellent practice to keep pressed flowers intact.

What kind of flowers are great for drying?

  • strawflower
  • lavender
  • zinnias
  • peonies
  • carnations
  • dahlias
  • marigolds
  • pansies
  • there are endless possibilities really.

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Check out some of my other flower-related posts!

Final Thoughts

The fleeting beauty of flowers is a part of their appeal. But with the preservation trick I shared, you’ll now be capable of prolonging their charm for years.

Maybe you’re thinking of making one as a gift. Or perhaps you want to preserve flowers with sentimental value from wedding bouquets or anniversary flowers.

No matter what your reasons are, knowing how to preserve flowers makes tending to them more enjoyable.

Share your beautiful creations with family and friends!

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    1. I love this! My daughter’s fave is sea creatures and such; so I’m going to “borrow” this idea, play with it and send you a pic. Thanks!

      1. Thank you Sue, and yes I would love to see your twist and take on it please do send pictures 🙂

      1. do you spray the vase to coat and protect so you can wash it?

  1. So beautiful! My daughters and I forage wildflowers all through the spring, summer and fall. We’ll have to give this a try. Found you through the Simple Homestead Blog Hop!

    1. Thank you Sarita and thanks for sharing. I would love to see what you and your daughter’s create – and thanks for stopping by.

    2. A great way to use what we find in nature, huh!?!

      1. Thank you Sue, you are so right and I’m excited to enjoy it year around

  2. Oh my gosh, Chas. That is beautiful! Such a pretty DIY. Thank you for sharing. 🙂

    1. You are so sweet Linda, thank you so much. Hope you’re having a lovely week.

  3. Mother of 3 says:

    That is really beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing with us at Encouraging Hearts and Home. Pinned.

    1. Thank you Joanne, I truly appreciate it and thanks for the great party and Pin.

  4. What a wonderful way to save some precious flowers. I love how memories could be preserved this way. Your upcycled vase turned out beautiful.

    1. You are so very sweet, thank you so much Amy, I appreciate it.

  5. Beautiful! My mom always asks if I press the flowers my sister sends to my sons grave. I said I don’t know how but now that I do I’m definitely doing this and putting it in his room. Thank you for wonderful instructions.

    1. Thank you Danna, and I’m so sorry for your loss. I hope that you might be able to create something beautiful with those flowers in his memory.

    1. can u wash the vase ?

      1. If you use dishwasher-safe Mod Podge you can wash the vase, and it seals it.

  6. That’s great, I wouldn’t have thought of using mod podge but it turned out so well.
    I remember pressing flowers as a kid and then using clear sticky backed plastic over them to make cards but I always had bubbles that I couldn’t get rid of!

    1. Thank you Julie, and thanks for sharing that memory, I totally remember doing that too and had trouble with bubbles as well.

  7. Thank you for sharing at #ThursdayFavoriteThings. Pinned and shared. Have a lovely week. I hope to see you at next week’s party too!!

    1. Thank you so much Marilyn, I appreciate it. Hope you had a wonderful weekend.

  8. Thank you for sharing at #OverTheMoon. Pinned and shared. Have a lovely week. I hope to see you at next week’s party too!

    1. Thank you very much Marilyn, I appreciate it. Hope you are having a lovely weekend.

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