Sending sympathy flowers to those that are grieving is a symbolic and meaningful gesture, one deeply-rooted in history that has become a core tradition in modern culture, (read part one of our Funeral Flower series for more information on the history and meaning behind funeral flowers).
Though a family that is grieving the death of a loved one knows that no gift could ever lessen the burden of their loss, they may take solace in knowing that they are in the thoughts of so many close friends and relatives. However, after a funeral is over, many families find it difficult knowing what to do with the flowers they received and how they might preserve their beauty and sentiment.
In part two of our Funeral Flower Series, we explore options for how a family can give their funeral flowers a second life. We hope you find these suggestions practical and useful.
Replant flowers in a garden or pot
Many funeral guests choose to send a potted plant or blooming garden basket to the family of the deceased in lieu of fresh cut flowers. If this is the case, your family can replant in a garden or a larger pot once the plant outgrows the one provided for the funeral service. Replanting sympathy flowers in your loved one’s memory is a living tribute that benefits future generations and will assist you in remembering your loved one in a heartfelt way. When replanting, be sure to follow normal tips and precautions to minimize transplant shock. Read this article for more information.
Turn funeral flowers into keepsake jewelry
A unique option for giving sympathy flowers a second life is to turn them into jewelry, which allows you to carry a loved one’s memory with you wherever you go. The handmade jewelry is made from sympathy flowers, and will vary in color depending on the type of flowers used to make the piece. Many flower petal jewelry makers will even allow families to combine up to three different flowers and colors to create a swirl pattern. This article shows how funeral flowers can be turned into keepsake jewelry.
Check out these businesses that turn funeral flowers into beautiful keepsake jewelry:
Alternatively, you can create flower petal jewelry at home if you have the necessary supplies. Follow these instructions to learn how.
Decorate a candle
Another great option for preserving memorial flowers and creating a long-lasting memento is to make your flowers into a keepsake candle. Depending on your preference, keepsake candle makers can create a candle that burns like normal, exposing the flowers as the wax melts (see picture on left). Alternatively, you can choose a candle that is simply a wax shell with a hollow center where you can place a faux flicker candle. Because this option doesn’t burn, your flowers will remain encased in the wax forever.
Check out these businesses that turn funeral flowers into unique and heartfelt keepsake candles:
1. Creations in Candles (as seen in the picture on the left)
2. Forever in Time (as seen in the picture on the right)
Alternatively, you can create flower keepsake candles at home if you have the necessary supplies. Follow these instructions to learn how.
Press flowers to preserve their beauty
Pressing flowers that you receive from a funeral service can help preserve their natural beauty and appearance. There are a number of ways to press flowers, the most common of which include using a book, iron, or microwave to dry the flowers, and there are plenty of options for how you might display flowers after they are pressed. See below for a short list of ideas:
Frame pressed flowers
Frame your pressed flowers to help keep them safe and protected, while also displaying their beauty for others to see. Add a photo of your deceased loved one, their obituary, and/or writing samples for an extra personal touch. Click here for instructions on sealing and framing pressed flowers.
Make pressed flowers into coasters
Give your pressed sympathy flowers a second life by turning them into drink coasters. Pressed-flower coasters are a unique and beautiful use of memorial flowers, and will help spark conversations about your loved one each time you sit down for a drink with friends or relatives. Click here for instructions on making pressed-flower coasters.
Turn pressed flowers into a bookmark
Craft sympathy flowers into bookmarks for a timeless memento of your loved one. For an added touch, make a pressed flower bookmark for each of your closest friends and relatives, and stick between the pages of the deceased’s favorite book for a sentimental memorial gift. Click here for directions on how to make a bookmark out of pressed flowers
Dry flowers to give them a second life
Similar to pressing flowers, which we discussed above, drying flowers helps preserve their beauty and allows you to display the flowers in a way that is sentimental to you in remembrance of your loved one. For directions on how to air-dry your flowers, click here, and see below for inspiration on how to display your dried sympathy flowers.
Showcase dried flowers in a shadowbox
Using a shadowbox instead of a flat picture frame (as previously described) allows you to display your dried flowers in their natural, un-flattened shape. Adding a picture, prayer, poem, or writing sample from your loved one can help further personalize your DIY keepsake. Click here for instructions on how to craft a dried flower shadow box.
Turn dried flowers into fragrant potpourri
Turn dried flowers into potpourri to preserve their natural aroma and make them last even longer. Potpourri is also a beautiful decor accessory, and its presence in any room will help you remember your loved one fondly. Click here for directions on making potpourri out of dried flowers.
Encase dried flowers in a holiday ornament
After you dry your sympathy flowers, encase them in a holiday ornament for a sentimental reminder of your loved one every holiday season. Check out this article for helpful tips and tricks and a how-to guide to get you started.
Do you have a favorite way to preserve and cherish meaningful flower arrangements? Leave your ideas in the comments below.