It was the time when Victorian era flower arrangements were first acknowledged as a form of art. Similar to Victorian fashion, architecture and home furnishings that were heavily influenced by Great Britain, the Victorian floral arrangement was altogether enjoyed by the upper class to show off their wealth and power through showcasing huge, elaborate, and intricate designs. Usually, this activity was done by cultured Victorian women who significantly took pride in their creation.
Victorian era flowers conveyed messages
Victorian moral values prohibited the society from outright entanglements between other people. With this, flowers had become a popular means of conveying furtive messages.
During this era, several flower dictionaries were published as to explain and decipher the secret meanings of flowers – floriography. Victorian flower arrangement soon held a special value among the people, as flowers themselves had constructed a language.
Most of the accounted meanings were taken from various European folk literature, such as myths, legends, and fables, among others. Also, since the use of the flower as a language had been popular back then, people gave their own interpretation themselves. However, whenever a genuine search for meaning appeared to be a failure, the meaning was rather fabricated as to suit the needed occasion or perhaps to establish standardization.
Meaning, like language itself, is arbitrary. There were many occasions when some flowers and their arrangement happened to be contradictory to their significations. Connotations extended further to the flowers’ colors as they had become archetypal and universal. For instance, a red rose signifies love and passion while white rose shows purity; these significations persist up to date.
Features of Victorian Flower Arrangement
Victorian style of flower arrangement had a standard of being extravagant, luxurious and filled with seasonal Victorian flowers. The flowers used for the design were picked from the florists’ own grown gardens that mostly consisted of Carnations, Tulips, Daisies, Fuchsias, Dahlias and Lilies among many others. Roses had become popular too among the Victorian era flower arrangement, as it was almost mandatory for every florist to include roses in their arrangements.
The containers were almost equally important with the Victorian floral arrangement per se. Usually, they are designed elaborately but not to the extent that it would outperform the flowers. Different containers may also be used, from vases to urns, baskets, and bowls among many other containers made with a variety of materials.
Different containers may also be used, from vases to urns, baskets, and bowls among many other containers made with a variety of materials.
What were the popular colors in Victorian flower arrangements?
Early Victorian flower arrangement designs preferred rich colors like red, purple and royal blue matched with the color of gold. However, after the French Rococo or Late Baroque movement in the 1840s, floral arrangement shifted to brighter colors paired with silver. Soon enough towards the end of the Victorian Era, more simplistic approach towards flower arrangement challenged the previously elaborate and lavish designs.
The prominence in aesthetic beauty and elegance of Victorian flower arrangement had persisted up to the present times. Contemporary renditions of the modern Victorian floral arrangement are to be seen on almost every special occasion. Truly, the Victorian era flower arrangement has become one of the major the foundations of many floral arrangements that we know today.