The Language of Flowers and Herbs for Valentine’s Day

Did you know that flowers and herbs can convey hidden meanings according to the Victorian Language of Flowers? By ‘gifting’ specific herbs and flowers, suitors can creatively show their affection for the person they love and/or desire. Traditionally, bouquets of flowers and herbs were placed together with lace and ribbons in a tussie mussie or corsage. This custom is still popular for traditional wedding ceremonies today. The bride carries a bouquet (or tussie mussie) and the groom and groomsmen wear corsages. But why limit the way you convey your feelings to a loved one with bouquets and corsages? Flowers and herbs can also be placed together to create Valentine cards, wall decorations, potpourri sachets, wreaths, even a themed meal. The possibilities are endless. Why not try this romantic custom out for yourself this Valentine’s Day?
It is easy and inexpensive to create a Valentine card from the heart. By doing so, you share a little bit of yourself and show your intended how special you think they are. Anyone can buy a card from the store. But not everyone would put forth the effort to create a handmade Valentine. Handmade cards or gifts convey that little something extra. Thought, time, creativity and effort all go into creating a handmade gift. A gesture to be treasured much more than a store-bought card or gift!
To get you started, I wanted to share some of the basic herbal and flower symbolisms from the Language of Flowers and Herbs. Of course these symbolisms do vary with different sources. Choose those that represent your feelings and start creating!

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Lavender- represents devotion
Red Roses-represent love
Rosemary- stands for remembrance
Thyme- denotes courage
Baby’s Breath- represents innocence or purity
Red Carnations- conveys red hot passion
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Several of the above herbs and flowers were used in the following Valentine card designs.
Lavender Lovers Valentine

You will need:
1- 8.5 x 11″ piece of white card stock or heavy paper
1- 8.5 x 11″ piece of lavender paper
1/2 c. Lavender blooms * edging scissors * pencil
Lavender or purple flower picture * scissors * craft glue *ruler
envelope to match
Fold the card stock in half horizontally and crease with your fingers. Fold the lavender paper in half horizontally and place over card stock. Using ruler measure in 2.5-3″ from the horizontal edge and cut off to shorten. Cut all 4 edges with edging scissors (to create a fancy edge). Glue lavender paper to card stock with craft glue. Using pencil, draw a heart shape in the center of the front of the card. (Can use a template if desired to draw around.) Cut out heart. From the lavender picture, cut out a heart shape slightly smaller than the heart on the card. Glue lavender picture heart to the top of the heart on the card stock so the heart hangs in the open heart area. Working a small space at a time, squirt craft glue around the edge of the large heart cutout. Glue Lavender blooms in a line around the heart. Let dry. Print inspirational message inside sharing your devotion and place in envelope.
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Red Rose Petals Valentine

You will need:
1- 8.5 x 11″ piece of card stock or heavy white or cream paper
1- 5 x 6″ (approximate) pink paper doily heart
1/2 c. dried rose petals
6″ 1/4 ” white ribbon *craft glue *scissors *pencil
envelope to match

Fold the card stock in half horizontally and crease with your fingers. Using ruler measure in 2″ from the horizontal edge and cut off to shorten. Glue doily heart to center of card stock front. Draw heart on front of doily heart with pencil. (Hint: Use embossed heart design on doily as guide.) Working a small area at a time, glue Rose petals in heart design on doily front. Create a bow from white ribbon and glue to center top of heart. Let dry. Print inspirational message inside. Can place a few drops of rose essential oil on rose petals to enhance the effectiveness of the message : ) Place in envelope.
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Seeds of Love Valentine

You will need:
1- 8.5 x 11″ piece of white card stock or heavy paper
1- 8.5 x 11″ piece of pink or red paper
Red and pink foam hearts * piece of white paper
Red and pink tissue paper * 1 yard of white string * stapler
Flower seeds * pencil * craft glue * scissors *edging scissors *tape
Fold the card stock in half horizontally and crease with your fingers. Fold the pink or red paper in half horizontally and cut all 4 edges with edging scissors. Glue over top of folded card stock. Glue foam hearts on top of card front in desired design. Using one of the foam hearts as a template, draw around it on pink and red tissue paper. Fold tissue paper in half and cut out 2 hearts for every design. Place 5 or 6 seeds in center of both hearts and glue together. Make sure glue surrounds the seeds for tight seal. If seeds do not stay inside of hearts, add more glue. Cut 2-3″ of string for each heart and staple to top of heart center. Let dry. Write seed name on white paper (very small) and cut out for each heart. Staple to end of string for heart ‘tea’ bag. These ‘tea’ hearts will disintegrate in the soil allowing the seeds to sprout. Can use glue instead of staples to attach string to heart if desired. Using small amount of scotch tape, glue heart seed bag to front of each foam heart. Include directions for planting seeds inside of card. Use several different types of flower seeds if desired. Print inspirational message inside and place in envelope.

A hands-on workshop to create the above Valentine designs will be held at The Simple Heart of Life’s Valentine’s Day celebration (1486 Turkey Farm Road, Bluffs, Illinois) on Saturday, February 13th, beginning at 1 pm. Herbal refreshments will be served from 11 am 5 pm to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Why not join us and enjoy a day of life’s simple pleasures?

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