Saturday, November 14, 2009

I Heart the Fleur de Lis

People often ask me what my favorite design is. That’s easy. The Fleur de Lis is so rich in history and has so many gorgeous variations, that it is my hands-down fave! Dating back to the 12th Century, the Fleur de Lis was originally used as an emblem of French monarchy.  Over time, it was depicted on coins, pottery, heraldry insignia, banners, crown jewels, and all things stately and important.

The phrase translates to “Flower of the Lily”, and is thought to most resemble the Iris. The three petals are often used to symbolize the Holy Trinity, the Virgin Mary, and have represented military power and strength.

Here in the U.S., New Orleans, Louisiana (NOLA) has held it strongly and proudly as a sign of its French heritage. The design is has been infused throughout time in architecture, and is frequently seen in wrought iron patterns and finials.

The Fleur de Lis has recently made a huge comeback, most currently by way of interior design, and even in graphic art scrollwork flourishes. It’s particularly used as a sign of support to NOLA following Hurricane Katrina. Even the Boy Scout and Girl Scout trefoils have evolved from the Fleur de Lis. So, I guess it’s safe to say that I’m not the first to fall in love with this special design.

Interestingly, the Fleur de Lis has been said to stand for light, life, and perfection. Maybe that’s why I love it so much. Here’s my rendition of the Fleur de Lis (as seen on my Bourbon Street Fleur de Lis Tee) in perfectly light-refracting Swarovski crystal rhinestones:

So, now you tell me. What is your favorite design element?
Take care, and always let your light shine, my friends! Ellen

1 comment:

  1. Great post - enjoyed the history & photos to compare. I don't know if it counts as a design element but I'd have to go with the Ourobourus