Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Preparing Flowers for Resin - FAQs

Fresh cut flowers might be shortlived but we can't help enjoy them for their fragrance, beauty, shape and colour. It's no wonder that we want to preserve them forever in resin.

But how do you preserve them?

And can you put them straight into resin?

These are questions I'm often asked about putting botanicals into resin. Hopefully, this FAQ page will answer the questions you've been wondering about.

I know you're itching to get your flowers into resin before they begin to fade, but before you dive in with those beautiful flowers from your bridal bouquet, or the memorial flowers from a loved one's passing, read through these FAQ's so that you know how to treat your flowers for best results.
Wedding bouquet of white chrysanthemums, deep red rose buds and blushing bride proteas on a wooden deck

Keep Your Flowers Fresher for Longer

First things first, keep the flowers in a cool place until you're ready to work with them. Have you noticed how florists keep their arrangements in the fridge? There's a very good reason why. It helps slow down the flowers' development so that they are fresher when they're delivered. You can keep your precious blooms in the fridge for several hours.

Things that will make them wilt faster are heat, draughts and direct sunlight. So if you can't put your flowers in the fridge, place them in an esky (aka cooler/chilly bin) or even in a bucket of fresh, cool water to help keep them hydrated, in the coolest place in your house and away from draughts.
Wedding bouquet of pale apricot open roses, blue sea holly flowers, gypsophila and greenery in a bucket of water.
Keep flowers in a bucket of fresh water in the coolest place in your house

Preparing Flowers for Resin - FAQs

Now, read on to find out the answer to some common FAQs.

Q. Can you put fresh flowers in resin? 
A. No. Flowers and other organic materials should be completely dried before embedding in resin. If any moisture remains in the material, the flowers will become brown, sludgy or mouldy in a short time.

Q. How do you dry flowers for resin? 
 A. For whole flowers, place them on a layer of silica sand (like Flower Drying Art) or cooking salt and then carefully spoon more desiccant around and over them until they are covered. Leave them to dry for a week and then check them. They should feel papery. If not, repeat the process until they are dried. You can learn more about drying flowers with desiccants here.
Stem of yellow chrysanthemums lying on a bench alongside a plastic lid of dried yellow chrysanthemums.
Fresh flowers on the left and flowers dried in silica sand in the microwave on the right
Q. How do you preserve the colour of flowers when you dry them?
A. Most flowers will change colour when you dry them. But the best way to preserve the colours is to dry them using a quick method like the microwave drying method.
Pressed rainbow rose petals strewn on a black bench alongside a Microfleur flower press with 4 rainbow rose petals
For quick results, dry flowers in the microwave using a Microfleur flower press
Q. Can I dry flowers in the microwave? 
 A. Yes. This is the quickest way to dry them. You can use a Microfleur flower press if you want to press the flowers. To keep the flowers whole and 3D, place them in a microwave-safe container and cover them with fine silica gel. The silica gel needs to get down inside the layers of petals too.

Q. What’s the fastest way to dry flowers?
A. Use the microwave. Not only does it give the fastest results, but the flowers retain their colour really well. The power level and length of time required will depend on your microwave. You can press them or dry them whole in the microwave. Find more information on using the microwave to dry flowers here.

Q. Can you put dried flowers straight into resin?
 A. Some dried flowers become translucent when they're put in resin whilst others don't. To be on the safe side, seal the flowers before embedding them to help prevent the resin from penetrating the petals.
Pressed red and yellow rose petals coated in a layer of wet Mod Podge on a sheet of silicone baking paper. Painting a layer of Mod Podge onto a rose leaf.
Sealing dried petals and leaves with Mod Podge
Q. How do you seal flowers before putting them in resin?
A. There are many methods that work well. Dried flowers can be coated with white craft glue (Mod Podge), hairspray, resin spray, quick-drying gloss spray, or sandwiched inside clear packing tape or a laminating pouch. This video shows several methods for sealing petals. Just choose the one that works best for you. 
PIN FOR LATER!
Preparing flowers for resin inspiration sheet

'Til next time.....








If you can't get enough of My Tutorials and you want even more inspiration, click here to find my books and printable pdfs