The desire to adorn ourselves with plants and flowers is well-documented in the historical record. We read in accounts as far back as the ancient world that victors, both military and athletic, were crowned with laurel wreaths. Marie Antoinette often adorned her towering coiffures with fresh flowers. I read once that she and other ladies of the French court would hide vials of water in their hair to keep the blooms fresh, displaying a true dedication to beautifying themselves. Over a hundred years later, Frida Kahlo put her own spin on this idea, often adorning her black braids with flowers. I love descriptions from the medieval time period of young girls crowned with flowers dancing around a maypole to welcome spring. Young women in the 1960s picked up on this idea with their daisy-chain crowns.
These examples all talk about putting plants and flowers in or on one’s hair. A recent floral exhibit in New York City took the idea of floral adornment much further. Fleurs De Villes, at The Shops at Hudson Yards, was a paradise for flower lovers. Part floral display, part fashion show, and part art exhibit, the event imagined what it would be like to adorn ourselves with flowers from head to toe. Mannequins were “dressed” in floral gowns, headpieces, and even shoes made entirely of flowers and plants. In a nod to its NYC location, the show included a Studio 54 mannequin, one from Sex in the City, and even the three Schuyler sisters from Hamilton. I could go on about how spectacular the display was, but I think these pictures say it better than I ever could.