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The secret language of flowers

Everything has meaning, everything! Even flowers. Do they know that?! Back in the Victorian times humans needed a secret way to communicate, especially in the love department, and they did that with flowers. So if flowers could speak… well they can!

The idea to do this piece came from Lilla Rogers MATS bootcamp. Thirteen flowers for the different regions of the world bootcampers live in. As an exercise we were to draw and letter our flower. California was in the forget-me-not region, but rather than stick to only one kind I picked nine from the list and went for a varied bouquet of shapes and meanings. 

Need a little love? Buy jonquils. Luck? Camelias. A welcome return to happiness? Lilly of the valley will get you there. Maybe add ferns to that bouquet for a dose of magic. Speaking of which, love at first sight is pretty magical and gloxinias will do the trick. With all this how can you not be always cheerful, like the coreopsis? You’re not? Too shy to speak up about your love? Turn to acacia blossoms for concealed love. Or, perhaps you decide that being coupled up is overrated.. ok then bring single blessedness with the bachelor button. And whatever you do, forget me not!

Below are the real life flowers I used for inspiration, with their names and associated meaning. Victorians had dictionaries but nowadays it’s listed on the internet. Sometimes the meaning varies depending on the site. The one I used was thelanguageofflowers.com.

 Fern: magic
Fern: magic
  Bachelor button: single blessedness
Bachelor button: single blessedness
 Lilly of the valley: return of hapiness
Lilly of the valley: return of hapiness
 jonquil: love me
jonquil: love me
 gloxinia: love at first sight
gloxinia: love at first sight
 camelia: good luck
camelia: good luck
 coreopsis: always cheerful
coreopsis: always cheerful
 forget me not
forget me not
 acacia blossom: concealed love
acacia blossom: concealed love

Lilla’s assignment was to create a journal cover. Here’s what the journal would look like in real life.

But besides a journal cover, I thought this design could also make a nice piece of wall art so I made it twice as big (available in my shop). And I’ll also have it at my show in a couple weeks

illustration stationery

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