A bride-to-be asked if it was worth it to have her bouquet preserved. Well, as a world class sentimentalist (read: pack rat), who doesn€™t throw (stuff) away, I€™d have to say it was/is for me. Now, not everyone puts flowers at the top of her wedding list. Trust me, I€™ve seen my fair share of silks and carnations (cringe) at weddings to verify that. But, I always knew flowers would figure prominently in my exchange of vows (we really, honestly can€™t call that thing we did a “wedding”), so having my bouquet preserved was imperative. In case you just fell off a horse-drawn turnip truck, yes, you really can get your bouquet freeze-dried or otherwise professionally preserved and mounted for posterity. My bouquet was a little teeny, tiny thing–white freesias and white tulips, with cosmos buds and variegated pittosporum for interest, tied with a golden brown scrap of lace. I put it all together with more than a minimal amount of sweat and only about seventeen €˜oh, c€”p€™s. But, don€™t you do that! It wasn€™t as easy as I thought and there are many reasons why you should hire a professional. We€™ll have that chat later. I would have, but since there was no time for even a phone call (you€™ll understand when you get the story), I HAD to do it myself! €˜Kay, so, anyway, we€™re talking about bouquet preservation–I got married on a Monday and since there was neither planning NOR honeymoon, I showed up at work the next day. (Yes, The Dove Lady has kept her day job–the birds prefer to eat year €˜round, pleeznthankuverymuch!) And I loved my bouquet so much that I brought it in for Show€˜n€™Tell. I carried it around, it sat on my desk, we wandered the halls, rode home on the bus, sat in some water (the bouquet) for a few hours and then overnighted in the fridge (remember–this was July–if there was room, I woulda been in there, too!). It wasn€™t until the next day when I brought it to work again that someone said, “Hey, you gonna get that dried?” (hand smacking forehead) Of course! So, I made some calls. And since I was meeting my girlfriend in Folsom for dinner that night, I took it to the nearby shop. I had a mind boggling choice of frames. And I like detail and texture, so I bought some pretty matt board at the frame shop (check out Michael’s the arts and crafts store) and Pat mounted the finished product on that. AND, since that night€™s dinner was sort of a second wedding reception (the first was Monday night, just my brand new husband and me!), I put the champagne cork (it was reeeally nice champagne!) in the frame with my bouquet. Oh, OH-kay. I inTEND to add the cork. As soon as I find it. (Oh, don€™t worry. It€™s here somewhere. The Dove Lady doesn€™t throw [stuff] away!)
€˜Kay, so if this kinda thing is important to you–how fun to display it at your big anniversary parties and your children€™s weddings! An heirloom, as Paulette said!–you will want to make arrangements for bouquet preservation beFORE your wedding. And, you know, it doesn€™t even have to be your whole bouquet. Your husband€™s boutonniÃ¨re and a few chosen blossoms and some keepsakes would be lovely (no cake or candy, please–bugs or The Dove Lady might find it!) If your heart€™s truly set, be sure to ask what kinds of flowers preserve best. That may help you decide on YOUR wedding flowers if you haven€™t already chosen them and help avoid disappointment (my Plan A was white lilacs and white peonies–you can€™t get either without ordering ahead, and besides, lilacs don€™t dry well.) So, anyway, one other thing to ask about is if the person you hire uses color enhancers on the dried flowers. Ask to see examples, painted, not painted. Details, details, details.
There are more than just the three folks I€™m going to tell you about, including a plethora of preservers to whom you can ship your bouquet. Hmmm…we€™re talking delicate stuff here, especially return shipping when the flowers are crispy, so I€™d stay local. Personal opinion. So, you will need to delegate a responsible someone to see to it your bouquet is delivered safely to the shop either that day or the next. Ask about pick up at your reception. These are three names I€™ve seen regularly over the years: Forget Me Nevers, www.forgetmenevers.com, (916)487-7304, in Carmichael; Sweet Memories Florals, www.sweetmemoriesflorals.com, (916) 985-3945, in Folsom; and Bouquets to Stay, www.bouquetstostay.com, (916) 774-9666, in Roseville. Check €˜em all out and see what works best for you.
While you€™re detailing, ask your wedding consultant about gown preservation. What? You don€™t have a wedding consultant. Tsk. I€™m sorry.
- The Dove Lady likes her day job, loves her boss, and besides, she likes to eat year ’round, too.