Do you cringe a little when you think of dried flowers? Can't imagine how dried florals could possibly look modern and trendy? I had similar thoughts for a long time. Let's backup, way up.
When I was little, before even kindergarten, my mom would take me with her about once a month to visit with some of the older widows in our neighborhood. In retrospect, I'm very glad that my mother was able to foster these relationships, and I'm glad that I got to know these women I might not have interacted with much otherwise. But as a kid, sometimes it was tough. Many of you probably have similar experiences from a grandma's house or great-aunt Dottie's: adults talking while you tried to entertain yourself without bumping into tables full of breakables or snagging a doily.
And, of course, dried flowers.
They seemed to be everywhere, in vases in the living room or little wreaths above the toilet. I only saw dried florals in these older women's homes, and my little brain conjured up the idea that dried flowers were dated and old-fashioned. That stuck with me for a long time.
Fast forward to today, and I've done a 180. I think dried florals can be stunning when used right and are absolutely trending right now.
My re-introduction to dried flowers was slow and cautious. It took quite some time to reshape biases toward them. And to be completely transparent, I still don’t think they can be 100% interchanged with fresh florals. They of course have a dried, dead look about them. But if you learn which flowers look best, how to properly shape them, and the best ways to use them, you’ll see for yourself that dried florals do have a place in design.
And that's why I'm so excited about including a drying kit and a video tutorial with the Autumn Flora Fun Box! You can learn the best ways to dry your own flowers, and in January, with the Winter Box, I'll show you how to use them to create beautiful winter wreaths that will get you through those sluggish post-holiday months.
To get going, let's dive into some of my favorite examples of how dried florals can be modern and trending.
Wreaths are a great place to use dried florals, for obvious reasons. You want something you can leave up on the door or the wall for some time. But that doesn't mean you have to go fake! Dried wreaths can hold onto the beauty of fresh flowers by preserving them for longer. Look at some of these fun, modern takes on dried wreaths:
credit: Jasmine Dowling
credit: Botanical Brouhaha
Wedding Corsages and Boutonnieres
Were you one of those people who tried to dry your prom corsage and keep a little piece of that special night forever, and then a month later the entire thing had crumbled? You can preserve those special arrangements by using properly dried flowers from the get-go:
These aren't your grandma's vases full of ancient flowers. I love how modern and fun those dried tropical leaves are! Very trendy right now.
credit: Andrea Johnson Floral Design
credit: Bloom Botanics Floral Designs
And I just love that big hydrangea in the last pic! Because they are so big to begin with, they make great candidates for dried flowers. Learn more about hydrangeas and see how I've used them in arrangements by clicking here.
If you know me as a floral designer, you know that floral installations are kind of my jam. As in, every weekend I'm happy to be jamming out while I work on constructing a beautiful floral installation for an event. For this first one, the designer used those very trendy dried tropical leaves and mixed with fresh flowers, and the second one is simply breathtaking:
credit: The Dainty Lion
credit: Ashley Renuart
My speciality as a floral designer is weddings and events. I have made a lot of bridal bouquets, and let me tell you: dried flowers can open up a whole new set of possibilities when it comes to achieving the perfect look for a bride. I prefer mixing dried florals with fresh blooms, since this gives you the best of both worlds.
credit: Florals & Co.
credit: Crimson Wedding Flowers
Hopefully that gets your creative juices flowing and ready for all of the fun we're going to have with our autumn floral drying tutorials.
Learn something new. Create something beautiful.
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