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Preserve Your Wedding Bouquet With The Art Of Flower Pressing

  |  By Alison McGill

Photography courtesy of Alessandra Jennifer Ross.

Did you know your wedding bouquet can easily and affordably be transformed into a piece of custom art? “Flower pressing will turn your bouquet into an everlasting keepsake,” says Emily Santos of Pressed Petals By Emily. “Each piece of artwork is customizable for the bride to best match the aesthetic of their home; either classic frames, modern floating glass frames, or rustic shadow boxes, there is an option available for everyone. A pressed bridal bouquet is not only a beautiful piece of art for your home, but an incredibly meaningful one that can be passed down generations.”

Pressing your bouquet also offers a wonderful way to be more sustainable with your wedding flowers. Learn more about the technique (it's also very hot in fashion—Taylor Swift wore an Oscar de la Renta pressed flower dress at the 2021 Grammy Awards) from Santos who details her creative petal pressing process.

Emily Santos frames a pressed bouquet. Image courtesy of Pressed Petals By Emily.

How long does your flower pressing process take?
“From beginning to end, the bouquet preservation process takes around 15 hours on average. When a bouquet is received, it is carefully deconstructed to prepare for the press. Each flower has a different level of density and moisture, which is a contributing factor to determining the method of pressing. Some flowers will be entirely deconstructed petal by petal, whereas other flowers and greenery can be pressed whole. Each flower has a pressing method that is most suitable to retain as much color and texture as possible. Some of these pressing methods include ironing, microwaving, or using parchment paper within the flower press. While the flowers are in the press, they are monitored weekly to ensure that they are drying successfully with limited humidity, reducing the possibility of mold. Once the flowers are entirely dried out, each flower is recreated and sealed using the individually pressed petals. Next, the planning process begins for the design and placement of the final piece. Last, but surely not least, the flowers are set in place to recreate the original style of your bouquet and the frame is then sealed and wrapped. The final piece will be returned to the bride anywhere from eight to 12 weeks, depending on the duration of time required for pressing.

A pressed bouquet creates a beautiful bespoke art piece. Image courtesy of Pressed Petals By Emily.

For someone wanting to do this petal pressing process, what do you need to do with the bouquet post-wedding to ensure it can be pressed?
“In the hustle and bustle of the wedding day, bouquets very rarely receive proper care which can reduce the lifespan of your florals by enhancing wilting and browning. While your top priority will not be your bridal bouquet, it is important to ensure that the bouquet is placed in water at some point during the day. Perhaps delegate this task to one of your bridesmaids or wedding planner. To get the most use of your bouquet, use it as a decorative piece during your reception at your signing table or on display at the bar. Not only will your bouquet be in a vase with water, but it will double as decoration; win-win! Prior to dropping off your bouquet for pressing, it is important to ensure that your bouquet remains in water, away from direct sunlight. Trimming one inch off the bottom of your bouquet prior to placing it in the vase of water will assist with keeping your flowers as fresh as possible until they have been delivered.”

What is the average cost for a pressed flower piece?
“Bouquet arrangements range in cost from $310-$515, depending on the size and style of frame ordered. Currently, we offer floating glass frames, standard frames, and shadow boxes. Each of these options are also available in small sizes as add-ons to gift to family members and wedding parties—a wonderful "thank-you" for their contributions in your big day.”

Emily Santos of Pressed Petals By Emily. Image courtesy of Pressed Petals By Emily

Why is this unique and artful process a beautiful thing to consider?
“A preserved wedding bouquet is one of very few keepsakes you can visually admire day in and day out. Without a doubt, a wedding is one of the biggest, most significant—and inevitably most expensive—days of your entire life. From the Pinterest boards for florals, decor, and venue inspiration, the spreadsheets on costs and budgets, and the hunt for the perfect wedding gown, there are a countless number of hours spent planning to ensure that your day is absolutely perfect. Having your wedding florals preserved will provide you with significant piece of artwork to display in your home while cherishing such fond memories.”


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