Allow the Fresh Spring Breeze Into Your Home and Wardrobe with the Secret Language of Flowers
Spring seems to have sprung with a particular vigour this year. Suddenly, patches of snow have melted into puddles of purple crocuses and daffodils have leapt from their slumber in a hopeful blaze of yellow.
Many of us have been fortunate enough to experience this sudden floral spectacle alongside the first mild, sunshine speckled days. After a particularly dark and difficult winter, the irrepressible optimism of Spring — which advances, no matter what — feels particularly pertinent.
Bringing this upbeat, promising mood into our homes and closets is a great way to capture the essence of this fleeting season. What’s more, being mindful of the symbolism and myths behind the spring blooms can add another layer of appreciation and mindfulness to our lives, imbuing our walks and wardrobes with a fresh positivity.
So, come with me on a journey through the secret language of flowers and, hopefully, get some Spring in your step!
The Innocent Daisy
Daisy’s generally bloom in April, but they are already making an appearance in stunning seasonal bouquets and are a perennial favourite in timeless Spring-inspired fashion.
This white bloom is part of the Asteraceae family which gets its name from the Latin word for star — Aster. A particularly apt name considering the similarities between the halo of petals around the daisy’s glowing centre and the twinkling stars in the night sky.
Daisies symbolise purity and innocence, thanks to an old Celtic legend where deities were said to comfort parents who had lost their children with a sprinkle of the pretty white blooms.
Linguistically, other symbolic properties of the daisy remain closer to us in modern life. As the phrase “fresh as a daisy” suggests, daisies represent a glistening new day thanks to the way their petals close at night and eagerly unfurl at dawn.
Many of us probably remember plucking the petals off a daisy chanting “they loves me, they love me not,” which perhaps has links to the daisies association with the Norse Goddess of love and beauty, Freya.
Humble and unassuming, there is more to the daisy than meets the eye which makes it a beautiful, understated motif to wear.
Wearing the daisy: Although fads and trends aren’t really our thing, the daisy is totally in right now thanks to the enduring ‘90s trend, but this timeless bloom isn’t just a flash in the pan. The daisy motif appears year in, year out in fashion — just like it our lawns, and the understated daisy brings an understated freshness.
The daisy in the home: Daisy prints make the perfect lightweight Spring/Summer curtains to usher in the season.
The Cheerful Crocus
Buy the print above from The Little Ram Etsy shop
Splashing rich purple and yellow across the once barren ground, the crocus is unsurprisingly associated with happiness.
My personal favorite Spring flower is more suited to a small posy in a jam jar or a buttonhole than a full bouquet, but what it lacks in size, it makes up for in good cheer.
Just like the sunshine yellow saffron which certain varieties of crocus produce, this Spring bloom is imbued with the warmth of the coming days.
Wearing the crocus: Crocus colours just scream Spring. Pairing purple and yellow might be daring, but you can totally carry it off with accessories, scarves and other flashes of beaming colour.
The crocus in the home: Crocuses make a great low maintenance window box which will pop up on its own accord, year-upon-year.
The Daring Daffodil
Buy the mask above from the Gully Cottage Etsy
One of the most potent and recognisable symbols of Spring, most people can’t help but crack a smile when they see the first daffodil of the year.
The daffodil symbolises rebirth and new beginnings, which isn’t surprising considering how these hardy bulbs burst into life after the frost recedes.
Perhaps especially pertinent this year, the daffodil is also a symbol of resilience thanks to their hardy nature and ability to reliably pop up, year-upon-year, no matter how harsh the proceeding winter may have been.
The daffodil carries various other meanings throughout the world including regard, esteem, chivalry and good fortune. One of the sweet joys of daffodils is their sheer abundance, so it’s perhaps fitting that a single daffodil can signify misfortune, whereas a cluster of blooms is always associated with more positive connotations.
Wearing the daffodil: A bold print which is sure to be noticed, I love the symbolism of the daffodil as a facemask showing both a resilience and a hope for a summer of less restrictions and more connection.
The daffodil in the home: Everyone associates the daffodil with Spring sunshine and bringing this plant into the home, whether in blooms or decorative art or prints, is a surefire way to bridle the optimism of the season.
The Bashful Primrose
One of the first flowers to bloom in early spring, the Primrose derives its name from the latin word ‘Primus’ which means first. Thanks to this etymology, primroses can be seen as a symbol of youthful energy.
Primroses are a symbol of femininity which — like the daisy — are associated with the Goddess Freya. Each of the five petals of the primrose can be seen as representing a different stage of life and, consequently, the primrose is also a symbol of longevity.
In the Victorian language of flowers, primroses are a symbol of bashfulness, particularly in love and giving someone primroses was a way to shyly whisper “I can’t live without you.”
Wearing the primrose: Both youthful and timeless, the shape of the primrose is the archetypical 5 petaled flower which most of us instinctively draw when doodling. Because of this quality, wearing a primrose design is somewhat neutral as it embodies the vast symbolic meaning of the flower in general.
The primrose in the home: Primroses make a very easy to nurture balcony or windowsill plant and are a sweet gift for a shy lover.
The Deeply Loving Tulip
Although associated with the Netherlands, the tulip originated in Central Asia where it grows abundantly as a wildflower.
Like all Spring blooms, the tulip has associations with rebirth and is the perfect flower to give to signify new life changes. The most well-known and enduring meaning of the tulip, however, is a deep and perfect love.
One of the most famous Persian love stories about the star crossed love between Fahrad and Shirn has a few different versions, but according to folklore, the first tulip is said to have bloomed from the blood of the ill fated lovers as a symbol of their everlasting love.
The tulip is also associated with charity in the Victorian language of flowers.
Wearing the tulip: Tulips come in many shades which are all somewhat lively and optimistic. The tulip pink of the shirt above has an unmistakable touch of Spring which would not look out of place in any season and is calming, soft and compassionate in tone.
The tulip in the home: The tulip brightens up any space and is perfect for bringing new life into a room. As a gift, tulips are appropriate to cheer someone on in a new venture or to show unconditional love — whether for a spouse, business partner, child or friend.
Cover image by Tejvan Pettinger on Flickr