The history of floral designs dates back nearly 5000 years ago in Ancient Egypt with highly stylized floral arrangements.
It is known that the first floral print originated in Asia, and the first fabrics displaying floral designs appeared somewhere in the Ottoman Empire during the late Middle Ages. Leave it to the Italian merchants to start trading for these floral textiles, and producing their own richly decorated fabrics with floral motifs. The rest is history. Somewhere between 1600 and 1800, one of the most famous floral fabrics ever, the chintz, was created in India, and during the 1900’s, chintz became a global favorite among women. Bold floral silks coming from China and Japan were soon to follow as favorites.
We perhaps owe women and their love for flowers, for spreading floral prints and patterns around the world.
For hundreds of years, floral patterns have made a strong fashionable statement in women’s wear, fabric design and home accessories. The floral as a decorative motif has a universal, continuous appeal that seems to have achieved ageless status, and were the flower a human, immortality. This simple, enduring motif has inspired every culture in the world to create their own interpretations of the flowers they see around them resulting in an endless supply of floral patterns and designs. No other motif found in nature has been the source of such global, lasting inspiration and creation. What power we must then attribute to the flower, and all its many shapes, colors and scents, that has inspired floral designs ranging from simple and charming to complex and elegant.
What exactly is this appeal that so many find in the flower for its use in creating designs?
Even the great artist, Claude Monet, stated he owed his life as a painter to the flowers. We have only to open our eyes to the natural beauty in this world to be moved towards a desire for connection to all this beauty. We cannot help but feel this connection to nature for it seems to be embedded in our very souls. Our souls thrive on this beauty, on the colors, on the textures and forms. No matter what emotional state we may find ourselves in at times in life, whether it be sad, stressed, angry or fearful, the beauty and connection we find in nature can at once deliver and uplift us to a higher state of being.
To create floral designs and patterns is thus not only inspiring, even comforting, but it maintains and deepens this intrinsic connection with the natural world.
What better place to bring our creations inspired by nature than into our home where they can be so fully appreciated. There are so many unique crafts available on the market today with which to accomplish this task. We can splash floral designs in our bedrooms with floral sheets and comforters, in the dining room with floral china and tablecloths and in the living room with floral curtains and pillows. One of the best places to decorate your home with floral patterns is on the floor. A painted rug, known as a floor cloth, is a fabulous way to do this. Floorcloths are primarily being created in the studios of artists who understand what a perfect blend of art and craft is to be found in a canvas rug. These artists can create for you a custom floorcloth with the colors, size and design to suit your decor perfectly. Many of them will already have beautiful floral designs from which you can choose. This fine craft is created on eco-friendly canvas made from heavy weight cotton, a renewable and biodegradable fiber. This canvas will out wear and last longer than almost every other area rug on the market. Further, it is hypo-allergenic, non-toxic, water and stain resistant, repels dust, dirt and insects and requires no cleaning costs. A floor cloth will withstand many years of boots and paws while adding a unique piece of floor art to your home decor.
One of the hottest interior trends in design today is called transitional style.
It provides a way to create a fresh new look in your home decor by incorporating some sleek, more modern products that will blend with your current decor. It is essentially fusion design, taking a mix of traditional, country, Asian, Southwest, contemporary or whatever your current home decor might be, and blending some of it together into a unique look that is simple yet sophisticated. A floor cloth, hand-painted with a transitional floral pattern, will blend beautifully with any decor to create that timeless, appealing new look. The pattern of a floral motif makes a fine choice as the limitless variations in floral patterns remains adaptable and attractive as a design solution.
Despite the popularity and historic use of abstract and geometric designs in textiles, the rich variety found in floral designs continues to support our links to the natural world.
In a time when nature itself is being threatened by our own negligence of this connection, we are well to be reminded, if even by the presence of the floral motif in our home. Our current fast paced, modern lifestyle, for the majority of people as urban living, may well push us to forget the simple beauty found in flowers. We can preserve this memory, as well as our nature connection, with the infinite variations to be found in the floral motif. Though it may just be a symbol, it represents on the deepest of levels our entire connection to all life on this planet. There is great power in the flower not to be forgotten. As Tennessee Williams so aptly put it, ” The violets in the mountains have broken the rocks.”