Potpourri has a wide array of uses and is a great way to create something beautiful and practical from dried herbs and flowers. You can make potpourri in a variety of scents ranging from floral and fruity to spicy. You can make potpourri according to the season and ensure you always have a pleasing aroma in your home or place of business. While you can use essential oils as a base for homemade potpourri, you can also press and dry your own flowers and herbs. You can create potpourri from herbs and flowers that you grew in a garden, as well as those from bouquets and other cuttings. Not only is potpourri a great way to add fragrance to your own living space, it also makes a wonderful gift.
Techniques for Drying Flowers
- Determine which method you will use to dry flowers. Choose from air drying or using a medium to absorb moisture.
- Choose between silica gel, sand, or oolitic sand as a drying medium.
- Dry flowers by hanging them upside down in a dark, cool room. Allow between one and three weeks for flowers and other plant materials to fully dry.
- Remove stems, leaves, and any material from plants before air-drying them.
- Keep flowers, leaves, and other materials away from humidity to ensure they dry.
- Pick flowers when they are closest to their full bloom, but have not yet reached that state for best success.
- Gather more flowers and herbs than you think you will need to ensure plenty of materials for your potpourri.
- Use borax and sand for a low-cost drying solution that is effective and efficient.
- Only place flowers and herbs that are in good condition in your drying mix or to hang dry.
- Never place wilted or discolored flowers in your drying mix.
- Select silica gel for a fast method that will dry your flowers.
- Reuse silica gel repeatedly by heating it to 250 degrees for 60 minutes to allow it to dry thoroughly.
- Always cut plants, herbs, and other materials with sharp scissors or a sharp knife.
- Dry flowers and herbs with intricate details and many parts in a microwave to speed up drying times.
- Choose vibrant, dark colored flowers as these retain their hues longer than pastel blooms after the drying process is complete.
- Arrange materials in a shallow box and stir them daily to ensure they thoroughly dry.
Potpourri Display and Decorating Ideas
- Use glass, granite, or stainless steel bowls when mixing, blending, storing, or displaying potpourri.
- Select brightly colored petals and display your potpourri in an open glass bowl to display its beauty.
- Create a sachet by choosing fabric or a handkerchief and stitching or tying it closed to display your potpourri.
- Place potpourri on mantles, counters and shelves for a decorative look.
- Choose silk, velvet, or velveteen fabrics and satin ribbons to create beautiful sachets to give as gifts.
- Look for potpourri containers that have a removable and tightly sealed lid. This will allow you to preserve the potpourri's fragrance when not in use.
- Consider using candy dishes to display your potpourri creations. Check out thrift and antique stores for vintage candy bowls with lids for a beautiful centerpiece.
- Look for bowls, glasses, sugar bowls, and boxes that can be reused to display potpourri. Stop by yard sales and see what you can find.
Written By Ava Rose.