Faux Florals Through History

September 25th, 2023
Faux Florals Through History

Faux flowers are not a recent invention. They have been admired and used for centuries, and their origins trace back to China, over 1,500 years ago, when silk blossoms were placed in the hair of women residing in the Imperial Palace to show their nobility. 

The trend of faux flowers quickly spread across China and soon gained global momentum reaching Japan, Korea, and finally, western societies via trade routes.

The European Take on Faux Flowers

It was not until many centuries later that faux flowers started consistently appearing in European culture. The first area where it blossomed was in the regions of Genoa and Venice, where Italian merchants crafted faux flowers using silkworm cocoons. These enchanting silk bouquets were used to decorate the dining table at royal feasts, quickly expanding their popularity to nearby countries. 

France put their own spin on the craft in the 1300s, using high-grade silk instead of silkworm cocoons, leading to more lifelike flowers, and making French faux flowers the most highly sought after. By the 18th century, these faux flowers would eventually spread across the world when the French imparted the craft to English experts, who subsequently brought it to America.

New Materials For Faux Flowers

As the popularity of faux flowers spread across North America, many craftsmen started using new materials including nylon, cotton, sateen, and paper, reducing reliance on silk. These materials made faux flowers look and feel much more realistic, and by 1920, artificial flowers were being used to supplement fresh blooms during seasons of shortage.

Faux Flowers of Present Day

Today, the term faux flowers is a generic term for all artificial flowers that mimic their real counterparts incredibly well. Beyond just the leaves and colours, modern production has made the details like stamens, leaves, and calyces sharper than ever. 

Faux flowers are now used interchangeably with real flowers, and are the perfect choice for weddings, birthdays, baby showers, and other significant events, as they can maintain their pristine look long after real flowers have started to wilt.

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