Flowers, cards, and her favorite things have long been associated with the celebration of Mother’s Day. The expression of admiration and appreciation for mothers and grandmothers all around the country, who have devoted their unconditional love and time to a child, is something we should honor every day. But specifically each May, we recognize and commemorate motherhood—a tradition held sacred since 1908. And it all started with flowers, carnations to be exact.
Anna Jarvis is credited with founding Mother’s Day in the U.S. and showing up to the first official celebration in 1914 with 500 carnations, her mother’s favorite flower and the often preferred bloom for corsages. Today, the corsage has blossomed into a rite of passage for prom-goers and bridal parties. Unfortunately, the same can't be said for Mother's Day, where many have abandoned the ritual. Remember those days in school when a dollar could buy you a carnation corsage to gift your mother? Well, those days have gone by the wayside in favor of floral bouquets and conventional gifts, much to Jarvis' chagrin. But, you can still see a few Southern women sitting in church pews (here and there) proudly wearing their fresh badge of honor on the second Sunday in May. Now, it’s not so much about the particular flower Mrs. Jarvis chose for her mother, but more so the best bouquet to shower your loved one with.
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For Mother’s Day, why not wrap the wrist in something as special as she is? Although many types of flowers can be used to make corsages, here are the five best blooms and a few colorful guidelines to keep in mind.
First, if you plan on wearing the corsage, choose white if your mother is deceased and pink or red if she’s still alive. The same rules apply if your mother is the recipient of the corsage. You should present her with a corsage bearing the appropriate colors concerning her mother.
Secondly, most corsages are worn on the wrist, but they can also be pinned, too. Regardless, it’s always worn on the left side—the same side as the heart. If pinned, make sure the corsage is placed a little higher on the shoulder, with the flower in an upright position and the stem pointing down.
Again, carnations are customary because of Jarvis' mother's predisposition to the flower. She believed the carnation represented characteristics synonymous with motherhood, such as love, faithfulness, and charity.
"If you would be happy for a lifetime, grow Chrysanthemums.”—that, a Chinese philosopher once said, sums up why this flower is not only a common choice to use in gardens and at homecoming, but they also create beautiful corsages.
In its most simplest form, roses represent love, happiness, and gratitude. A floral wristlet or pin made from these bulbs is just another way to show it.
Orchids are a symbol for fertility and children, and they also symbolize love, elegance, beauty, class, and strength—all traits worth championing our mothers for.
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5. Calla Lily
Calla lilies are often used when decorating for Easter and other spring occasions, as well as for a new birth or birthdays. It’s only fitting the flower that returns each year after winter is associated with rebirth. Its waxy blooms are also said to denote youth, purity, and, of course, beauty.