Monday, 13 May 2013

Say It With Hair Flowers - springtime gardening with hair accessories

For as along as I can remember I have always worn something in my hair. In the good old 80’s my big hair was tied up with spotty neckerchiefs and bows. The bows got a little more subtle and finally transformed into flowers, mostly hibiscus these days with a nod to my rockabilly heritage. I feel undressed without a hair flower, as do these ladies ...

Carmen Miranda :: Billie Holiday :: Paloma Faith
Hair flowers lend a touch of the exotic, a freshness that oozes glamour. Or simply craziness in the wilderness.

From the Northern greyness that was my Liverpool home as a kid, I sought out the fun records from mum & dad’s vinyl collection. This was one of my favourites – gatefold sleeve, a book in an album with pictures of sunny beaches and flowers.

In the foreground Tiki Table Runner by JeanieB
To my 10 yr old brain South Pacific had fun songs and a warm sunny aesthetic, I would be become an advocate of high waisted pants and hair flowers for ever more.

Something happens when you reach your 30’s – the gardening gene kicks in. Believe me I was sceptical too, but low and behold mid 30's it suddenly became important to grow things in the garden and not just use it as an extended playpen for the kiddies. 
I wanted to grow the exotic lilies that I have always loved, those that spoke of tropic isles and escapism and I wanted to smell their scent. A bit tricky in East London without a hothouse, but you can grow these lovlies outdoors ... 

They're for sale in most garden centres and will keep coming back year after year.

My gardening impulse ebbs and flows – I’m really just as happy with plastic flowers, which let’s face it last all year round. I mean is it spring yet? It’s hard to tell with the wind blowing a gale and the odd hail shower. 

A couple of weeks ago the sun forced its way through the clouds and I grabbed the opportunity to get some flowers in the ground quick. Bedding plants are the ones you can plant out each year and watch bloom over summer, they add a splash of colour and are cheap and cheerful in tubs or borders – just fend the slugs off and keep well watered.

Last year my garden was getting the better of me so I hunted around the web for help and came across Lisa Land Girl, a woman who gardens and blogs about it. Lisa came over to help me clear some foliage that was threatening to engulf the shed. 

I was delighted to see Lisa arrive on a bike with basket bedecked with flowers with Lisa herself in Rosie the Riveter garb. You can read her gardening adventures and drool over flowers and muck at Lisa's Growbag blog here.

If wearing fresh flowers in your hair leaves you looking wilted and prone to greenfly, then there are plenty of wonderful crafters making flower clips for the discerning rockabilly gal.
Have a look at Rosie Alia’s collection of hair accessories for Vintage Sweethearts.
She has quite an authentic looking crop.

Rosie Alia Designs via Etsy
RosieAliaDesigns' Etsy Shop Announcement
"I take my inspiration from the wonderful hair flowers so often seen in photographs and films atop the heads of beautifully coiffed ladies of the past...because every girl deserves to feel like a starlet!
I can also make custom pieces to order so if you just can't find that perfect piece, please don't hesitate to get in touch."

Meanwhile through the wind and the rain, since planting out in my garden, one single petunia has flowered. Behold I have green fingers!

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