CHERISH THE MEMORIES…..PRESERVE THE FLOWERS
For centuries, special occasions have included some form of fresh herbs and flowers to accent a special moment or event. In the late 1700’s the art of drying flowers became a ritual to preserve not only the summer gardens for winter décor, but also for medicinal tinctures, perfumes and potpourri. By the early 19th century, the fascination matured and became the ‘rage’ with many a parlor being graced with elaborate designs encased in beautiful domes and frames. A great number also included preserved birds and animals, to portray a complete nature vignette. A few years later, the passing of Queen Victoria’s beloved husband Prince Albert, brought about an obsession for saving and preserving memories. The custom became more detailed even yet with the addition of mementos, photos, ribbons, and any odd sort of keepsake or trinket being included. Since then, we have been pressing prom corsages in high school yearbooks, and tissue wrapping wedding bouquets to safely store in a hope chest. And today it continues…
We are very proud to keep this tradition alive and have one of the few on-site, freeze dry preservation machines in NY. This unique and delicate process, most recently noted on NBC, and afforded the Good Housekeeping seal of approval; is one of the most sophisticated methods of preservation today. Once preserved, we artfully arrange the flowers in decorative frames, shadowboxes, domes, or a host of other ideas. These flowers are a wonderful keepsake to be treasured for years to come, with all the memories intact.
- Bar/Bat Mitzvahs
….and a host of others.
You can also cherish your garden by preserving some of those prize winning blooms, or that lovely vase of roses.
Our frames are American made, by a family owned business in Montana; with many shapes, sizes and finishes to choose: round, oval, rectangle, square and heart. Various finishes include oak, cherry, mahogany, white, silver, gold and black. We can also coordinate a custom color to compliment your décor. Ranging in size from 5”-24” diameter for any style of arrangement.
Our custom shadowboxes of the same colors and similar shapes are perfect for adding complete collage of mementos with the flowers. This is one of our favorites as it visually tells a story or relates an entire event with its contents. These can include not only flowers, but an assortment of your cherished items. These are also perfect for collections, family mementos, antiques, and a host of other non floral items.
These are 2 choices resurrected from the past. The bell jar or ‘cloche’ was used in the Colonial garden to create a miniature terrarium for tender seedlings. Today we not only use them for this true purpose, but as a decorative cover for all sort of precious items. Flowers are placed in a small vase or needled arranger, and the cloche sets right over it. They are a unique accent to any home, vintage or modern, and start quite small for 1 bloom, and graduate up to app. 20’ tall.
The wood based domes are a Victorian tradition, but because of their simple design, can look quite modern. Flowers are arranged in an upright design to fill the inside, and then displayed on a shelf, dresser, or table. These start at a single bloom size and go up to a 12’’ tall. Perfect in any room, and not an invading piece. These both are perfect for multiple recipients.
These glass houses capture all the charm of times gone by. Originally used for prized orchid collections, today they are also the perfect container for dried flowers. A unique centerpiece or shelf addition, they are available in two sizes and can accommodate the larger amounts of flowers.
Having your flowers arranged into a decorative design is an option for those who just don’t care for any of the above or have their own ideas. Keeping in mind that freeze dried flowers are very fragile; with care and a designated display area, this would be an option.
These small nosegay bouquets are also perfect when you have multiple recipients. They are small enough to display on a dresser top, vanity, or inside a china cabinet.
The tussies mussie holders are a decorative holder to display your poseys, and a wonderful keepsake. Much loved by the Victorian aristocracy, and our personal favorite.
Fresh flowers surprisingly, start to deteriorate when the blooms are perfectly open. At this point their lives are nearly over; they have given their show-which was their entire desire. Freeze drying preserves whatever stage the flower is in, whether bud or wide open. If the flower is spent or drooped, we can at times rehydrate them, but you must be aware that the flowers preserve in the condition they are brought in. It is not a miracle method, but a preservation method. With that; it is advantageous for us to receive the flowers as soon as possible-preferably within 3 days of the occasion. While some flowers last longer, the results are best with the freshest and healthiest blooms. If…your flowers were forgotten out of water or just fretfully damaged; we of course can replace the spent blooms or an entire bouquet.
Keep your flowers in water, or water any foam or florist container they are in.
Mist them lightly with tepid water.
Using a plastic bag (recycle your drycleaner wrap or cello!) completely cover the flowers loosely, and twist tie to keep the moisture level inside.
Until you bring them to us, place them in the center* of your refrigerator-not the freezer-or any cool, dark place which is preferably below 50 degrees but above freezing. The cooler they are, the less the blooms will mature and begin to deteriorate.
*do not place near any interior walls of the refrigerator, as they may freeze.
If you are shipping flowers to us; after following the steps above you will need to pack them with plenty of padding, taped or wired in, and including an ice pack. We highly recommend overnight shipping-especially in extreme temperature seasons.
We can locally retrieve your flowers for you-ask about our event pickup.
Freeze drying only ranges from $10. for one flower, to $200. for a standard sized wedding bouquet, and 500.+ for a large memorial heart. The cost of the preservation is based on the amount of space your project uses in the machine.
All frames, domes, shadowboxes, and tussies are additional
The design fee is additional.
If we are replacing any flowers or accessories, they will be additional
Flower retrieval is additional
To uncomplicate the process…the flowers are first placed into a deep freeze and can remain so indefinitely until your space becomes available. During busy seasons this could be up to one month. The freeze dry machine is much the size of two large home refrigerators, where the interior temperature is at -5 degrees. The flowers are transferred from the deep freezer and placed inside for up to 3 weeks where the moisture will gradually be withdrawn every day with the rising of the temperature. Upon coming out of the machine they are completely dry and not unlike a thin, delicate paper, which makes them extremely fragile. Some flowers preserve better than others to which we can advise you; if you question the success of certain varieties, please feel free to ask of your concern…
The longevity of your flowers will depend on the conditions you display them; typically, you can expect 5-25 years. The more care you take, the longer they of course will last.
Never display near high humidity, extremely hot, or direct sun. It is also not advisable to handle them any more than necessary, as they are very brittle.
A small insect repellent is discretely hidden to ward off any possible intrusions, but an occasional watchful eye would be advised, as our insects of today enjoy all flowers, fresh or dried..
Even though this method is the least toxic excepting for air drying, there are energy issues and enhancement chemicals created soley for it purposes. We have chosen to forego these enhancements and to compensate for the energy used by purchasing carbon offsets from NativeEnergy.com