Saturday, September 15, 2012

Creating a 'Tussie Mussie'

There is nothing like spending times with friends to clear your head.  I did just that on Thursday night.  A nice dinner and then an 'outing'.

I went with a couple of friends to the Northville District Library to listen to a lecture about Victorian flower gardens and the meaning of flowers.  We had herbal tea and ate sugar cookies flavored with lavender and rose water. 

As an added bonus we got to make our very own 'tussie mussie'.  I am sure you are thinking what I did when I first heard the term.  What???

It turns out that a  "tussie mussie" is a small nosegay consisting of fragrant flowers.  It often held some of the secret meanings that the language of flowers might convey. The meaning of the flowers depended on a memorized code popularized by published "Language of Flowers" books.   I am guessing that these also came in handy to hold up to your nose before the invention of deodorant.

We were each given a bag with dried flowers that had been picked at Greenfield Village, a paper doily, and what we needed to hold it together.

I discovered that I have no talent for making one of these as seen here:

I was able to find out the meaning of all the flowers. 
Lamb's ears - softness
Larkspur - levity
Lady's mantle - comforting
Statice - success
Globe amaranth - unfading love
Fortunately, I had no Tansy in my envelope, which means 'I am declaring war on you'.  Anyone who has ever had this flower invade their garden knows that it does just that: declares war on your garden through a mass invasion.  My gardener thought the yarrow I was growing was tansy and was ready to pull it all out.
If you are interested in finding out the meaning of flowers, here is a website I found called Meaningful Gardens.  You can look up the meaning or the flower. 
And here is a photo I found of a nice tussie mussie:

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