faux flowers and…feathers

fake flowers Michael's

I was at that craft super-store, Michael’s, the other day (returning some materials from a holiday project that didn’t quite work out) when I got drawn in by the fake flower department. I have never taken the time to stroll through these aisles – that stuff is crazy! I couldn’t have been more awestruck if I was in a real botanical garden.

One of the things I miss about living in Manhattan is all the bodegas selling fresh flowers for great prices all year round. Before I ever moved there, I vowed that if I ever lived in New York City, I’d get fresh flowers every week. And I pretty much stuck to that decadence, even in the middle of the winter, even when funds could have probably been better used elsewhere (i.e. rent.) Not that there aren’t flowers out here in the ‘burbs, but there isn’t the same kind of access, variety, or prices. Point is, though I didn’t think I was a fake flower fan, I was temporarily tempted by the exotic beauties at Michael’s…

Such as, Safari-style:

safari flowers Michaels

And Polka Dots!:

polka dot flowers Michaels

These were clearly crossed with a Dalmatian:

Dalmatian Flowers Michaels

These looked pretty real, until you touched them:

flowers at Michaels

I was impressed by the beads of fake water on this leaf. It must have just rained:

Fake Leaf with water Michaels

I almost bought this Bogus Bird of Paradise – it was very realistic. Let’s face it, these things are so cool that they always look fake. And though they’re sold in corner bodegas all over NYC, they’re not easy to find around here:

Fake Bird of Paradise

Taking down the Christmas decorations can be a little depressing. I wonder: how we are going to get through the dark, cold months ahead? And most importantly, what are we going to put in the center of our dining room table? What would have the perfect winter-y, yet holiday-less vibe? I remembered when I was at Michael’s before Christmas I walked by something intriguing, something with flat, round, white-ish “leaves.” Kind of like this, but not exactly:

I ran into Pier 1 a few doors down, and aha! This is what I was looking for:

Pier 1 Lunaria

Except this looked so weird and rubbery up close that I couldn’t do it:

fake lunaria up close

When I got home, I did a little research: Turns out this is called lunaria and does exist in the natural world – but I think I will hold out until I find the real deal, or at least a more convincing version.

What I chose, instead, for our table’s winterscape was actually something dried, called lagurus:

dried lagurus

But I didn’t stop there. Inspired by all that wacky stuff at Michael’s, I got some… feathers. I already thought this was funny, and very Las Vegas of me, but it became funnier when I got home. Here’s just a sampling of the reactions from Rob as I walked in the door with them flouncing in my hand:


“Are you sure?”

“Are you okay?”

“Something’s amiss.”

“I don’t think I’m going to like that. It’s kind of girly.”

I assured him that I was just playing. And that we needed some talismans of fun in order to get through the long winter ahead. Here’s how it turned out:


It made us both shudder a little. Then the 70’s called to say they wanted their feathers back. In other words, they came out of the vase-jug after I snapped the picture.

What isΒ  your stance on faux flowers and feathers? More specifically, how are you planning to get through the winter (both psychologically and on a decorative level)? Please advise.

19 replies

  1. My mom used to have a giant wicker basket filled with peacock feathers in our living room. I always loved them! and yes, it was in the 70s.

  2. Trader Joe’s usually has some deals on fresh flowers. Paul is making noises about a faux Xmas tree in the future. I don’t think I can do that.
    Some of the fauxs are very well done, so go with them. I do have some hydrangeas that look great, and even sun flowers. Just talking about this will alert our eyes to some good colors when we see them.

    • You are right – Trader Joe’s does have some nice flowers – I wish there was one closer to us! 25 min isn’t too bad but I don’t get there as often as I’d like.

  3. I normally hate fake flowers BUT I had to use a few for wedding projects recently. I figured I’d just embrace their fakeness instead of trying to make them look real. Not exactly a natural look, but gerber daisies with brooches for centers are pretty,stinkin’ cute πŸ™‚

  4. Haha! Welp.. I’m a fan of the feather. I’m also a fan of the 70’s, so help me. But in defense of chucking them, the willowy grassy things would look pretty by themselves too!

    Life is so full of tough decisions. πŸ˜‰

  5. My house is a buzzzzzz with hearts and Valentimes(hehe). Stickers, garland, glue and likes. Every time Annabel askes where the tree is, I say, “outside and look at these beautiful cards we are making for “love” day” πŸ™‚ Gotta love the holidays, all of them!!

  6. Thanks for the memories! The Lunaria photo triggered an engram buried long ago. After dredging through my store of childhood memories I found it… My great grandmother always had a vase of dried Lunaria aka the “money plant” in her home. She had a plant near the front door and I can still see it drying in her garage. I agree with your decision to hold out for the “real deal” as I can’t imagine that a synthetic would do this beauty of nature justice!

Comments welcome here!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s