Have you noticed that almost every home, office or hotel lobby has at least one vase or centrepiece of decorative flowers? Even malls and some diners have decorative flowers.
You’ll find that even without a special occasion, such as a birthday or wedding, decorative flowers are always around to give any location colour and life.
Because of this, the florist and floral design industry have continued to grow and bloom. No matter what year or what location, flowers are always sought out by many.
As the years went by, artificial flowers have also become a preference for many. They not only last much longer than real flowers, but they also don’t require much maintenance. Modern technology and techniques have also improved the appearance of artificial flowers. They look super close to the real thing you wouldn’t even know that they’re artificial. Artificial flowers can also replicate the appearance of flowers that are rarely in season or have pollens that cause allergies and irritation. Hence, it’s no question why they’re also sought after as much as real flowers.
Have you ever wondered, however, when the use of flowers as decorative items started? What culture started it? What year did it really start?
It isn’t really surprising, but they’ve actually been around in many structures and cultures, long before our grandmothers and great-grandmothers started decorating the inside our home with them.
Sit back and relax because we’ll walk you through the history of the use of flowers as decorative items and more:
Ancient Egyptians in 2800 - 28 BC
Flowers in the ancient Egyptian times were initially used for religious ceremonies (garlands), decorations for tombs and the home. The flowers were cut displayed in the households using urns and vases. Other than those, flowers were also used for temple offerings, decorations for banquet tables and guests’ wreaths. These flowers were then arranged following simple designs and repetitive patterns.
Ancient Greeks in 600 - 150 BC
With the Greeks, celebrations such as weddings and births made use of wreaths and garlands. Vases were not really popular during this time period. Hence, the use of wreaths and garlands. Floral arrangements of these times were also symmetrical. They also chose flowers mostly for their symbolism and fragrance rather than their colour. Due to this, flowers chosen for decors were mostly white, especially in weddings since they symbolised purity.
Ancient Rome in 28 - 325 AD
The Romans’ uses for flowers didn’t differ much from the Greeks. However, their wreaths, garlands and crowns were much more detailed than the Greeks. Their arrangements are also not only fragrant, but they were also coloured.
Byzantine Period in 320 - 600 AD
This period also encompasses the Roman and Greek styles of floral adornments. However, they added fruits, small flowers and more leaves to their arrangements. The arrangements were also placed on goblets and large baskets. This period even put more importance on colour as the arrangements made use of complementary colours.
Ancient China in 500 BC - 100 AD
Religious ceremonies were mostly where the Chinese in this period used floral arrangements. The flowers decorated the homes’ altars and temples. The Chinese also placed greater importance on the flowers’ colours and texture. Additionally, they were one of the first to design baskets made especially for flowers. Lastly, the Chinese were the innovators of artificial flowers.
Renaissance Period in 1400 - 1600 AD
Decorative flowers made their acclaimed debut in this period through paintings. These paintings featured flowers mostly on vases. Furthermore, garlands were also woven with flowers, fruits and foliage. These garlands were then placed on vaulted ceilings and walls. It was also during this time that the Christmas wreaths made their debut.
Victorian Period in 1920 - 1901
The most extravagant and lavish floral arrangements were used during this period. Vases and urns were made of porcelain and even silver to house the flowers. Shapes of arrangements also varied between round, oval and even triangular! It during this period that the designing of flowers also recognised as an art and were taught.
In conclusion, it’s evident that decorative flowers go way back in time and that they’ve certainly evolved in every year. We even have arrangements that are much more grandiose and extravagant. There’s also no specific limit to how big an arrangement is. They’re also no longer limited to religious purposes. Indeed, floral arrangements have come a long way, and it’s clear that they’ll be here even after many years later. Whether it’s a wedding, a birthday or a simple celebration, flowers can be the finishing touch because of their versatility.