We think you’ll love this pretty way of preserving your wedding bouquet

On an occasion that should be filled with joy, many brides experience a twinge of sadness when faced with throwing away their bouquet. Allow us to introduce you to Imprint Botanical Casts – a genius and gorgeous way of turning your wedding flowers into a keepsake

Bridal bouquet by Studio Seapink and subsequent transformation into a cast by Imprint Botanical Casts
From bouquet to botanical cast: this hand-tied arrangement by East Lothian florist Studio Seapink (left) was subsequently transformed by Imprint Botanical Casts (right)

It’s one thing tossing it over your shoulder in the name of tradition, but throwing your bridal bouquet in the bin? An all-too harsh reminder that your wedding is over. There’s a raft of flower preservation companies out there, ready to turn your flowers into dried arrangements or paperweights, but Imprint Botanical Casts is one of the most original ideas we’ve come across.

Based in Fife, botanical casting artist Katy Eccles can take a handful of stems and turn them into a unique keepsake cast intended to hang on your wall and remind you of the good times you shared together.

Katy explains how it works: “I need at least 10-15 stems from the bouquet to create a cast. It’s preferable to get the whole bouquet intact, but if you wanted to keep some stems to dry or press, then I can pull the best ones for casting out of the bouquet.”

Choosing the composition of flowers for an Imprint Botanical Casts botanical cast
Katy places the flowers in a frame and plays with the composition until it’s just right

As with many aspects of wedding planning, the sooner you get the flowers to Katy, the better: “I need the flowers within 48-72 hours of the wedding, so I can make sure the stems have not perished before I’m able to cast them. (Wilted flowers become soft and papery which makes them difficult to create a proper imprint from.)

“I will work with you to advise best possible way to getting the bouquet to me as quickly as possible: either by courier, hand-delivered by someone who was at the wedding or dropped off by your florist. I can offer a collection service within Edinburgh and Midlothian for an additional £10 fee.”

Imprint Botanical Casts removing flowers from clay
The delicate art of removing the blooms from the clay cast

Before you set your heart on artwork filled with blowsy blooms, Katy points out that some flowers work better than others: “Unfortunately soft flowers with delicate petals don’t tend to come out very well, so roses and peonies are generally not suitable. A mixture of flowers and foliage is ideal; I can identify the best stems from your bouquet to cast.” 

There’s a range of sizes and styles of casts available and you can choose to have them hand painted or left in their natural plaster state. “The casts take three to four weeks to dry out and come ready to hang. In effect, it takes several months for them to completely dry – you will notice the plaster becomes whiter as it dries – but they are safe to hang on the wall meantime,” says Katy.

“As a special touch, your name and that of your new husband/wife, wedding date and venue will be inscribed into the back,” she adds. “I can also cast your bridesmaids’ flowers – perfect for a little thank-you to those ladies (or lads) who have helped make your day magical.”

Imprint Botanical Casts hand painting flower cast
Decisions, decisions: you can choose to have your cast hand painted or left in its natural plaster state

Like the idea? Katy is in demand and only able to fulfil a certain number of commissions a month. “If you cannot get your bouquet to me in time or my diary is full, I can source identical flowers to those in the bouquet to cast (for a fee). This means I can fit your cast around other work. It also opens the door for to those who are already married and wish they had been able to get their flowers cast.”

Katy is offering a special discount for anyone whose wedding has been affected by Covid. “If you’ve had to postpone, get in touch to book your cast in with a 30% discount off the full price. My heart goes out to all those whose plans have been disrupted by the seemingly never-ending virus.”