We take a look a few ways you can use flowers in the home, to make sure you benefit fully from their beauty and extend their life once their bloom starts to fade.
On the table
Flowers make a stunning centrepiece if you are having a dinner party and want to impress your guests. You can buy ready-made displays or create your own by arranging wildflowers in glass jars, bottles or baskets.
Using seasonal flowers is always effective, if you’re having friends and family round for dinner this autumn, decorate the table with woodland berries, birch branches, orange germini, cerise freesias and deep purple carnations. Over the festive period, incorporate traditional holly, ivy and mistletoe into your display.
Regardless of what flowers you are using, remember to pick a low arrangement so your guests can still see each other across the table.
On the walls
Flowers don’t only look beautiful when they are in their first bloom and you can ensure they last much longer by pressing them and using them as a piece of art. You may want to preserve some flowers which have a special meaning, like your bridal bouquet or simply give a bunch you picked from the garden a new lease of life.
You don’t need any specialist equipment to press flowers yourself, simply place your chosen flowers between some sheets of absorbent paper and place a heavy book on top. Leave the flowers to dry out for a week or so and then change the paper and leave for a further two weeks. You can then display the flowers on backing paper and frame them.
Pressing works best with naturally flat flowers such as violets, daisies and single-petal roses.
In your wardrobe
If you have some fragrant flowers such as roses in your garden or vases, you can harvest the petals to make homemade scented sachets to keep your wardrobe smelling great. Place the petals in a microwave and heat on full power for two to four minutes, or until they are no longer damp. Then leave them in a cool, dry place for several days until they are completely dry.
When they are ready, simply place the petals on a patch of material, gather the edges together and secure with a ribbon. If the petals don’t smell as strongly as you would like, add a splash of essential oil.
If you like a floral scent throughout your home, why not try your hand at making your own cleaning products using your favourite flowers?
You can make air fresheners by layering petals with non-iodised salt in a small jar. The salt helps draw out the natural scent of the flowers, keeping the entire room fresh and sweet smelling.
Lavender can be used in a number of cleaning products, thanks to its naturally strong scent. Simply fill a jar with lavender, top up with white vinegar, seal and leave for several weeks. You then need to strain and discard the lavender and you will be left with a delicious-smelling lavender-infused vinegar, which can be mixed with water to create an all-purpose cleaner.
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