4.12.2010

Theme Wrap-Up: Florals That Don't Suck

We all like a good floral print. Even boys--I know you've got some secret neck-tie or pair of boxer shorts ensconced in blossoms. But I worry we may not all know what a good flowered print looks like.

To demonstrate, I'd first like to present a floral print that sucks. Behold:


I've gotten millions of gifts from older ladies who use wrapping paper cloaked in designs like this one. Incidentally, the sofas in those ladies' houses don nearly the same prints. Guess what? Neither are cute. What I fear is that everyone's mom has a roll of gift wrap in a floral that sucks, and we're all just going to revert to that floral because we don't feel like buying a new roll.

The solution: don't let your mom fall into the bog of quicksand that is preposterous horticultural patterns in the first place. Go out and buy her a great, new print. Starting with something a little more traditional, like this:
Print by Paper Source

I like this pattern because it looks like a Julia Rothman. She crowds a bunch of common images together in the same scene but sticks to a soothing, uncomplicated color palate so it's not too overbearing. It kind of imitates what the ugly florals try to do, but the images have an outline so they look more cartoonish and whimsical. This particular print is not designed by the great Roth herself, but it captures the charm of her designs.


Print by Kate's Paperie

Now we get a little more cartoonish. This print has thicker outlines and white spaces that creates a more artful, more fun look than your grandma's disgusting floral dish towels. I love this design because it reminds me of illustations from Beverly Cleary's Ramona books, or the pictures in Rold Dahl books I read as a kid. The thing is, flowers are fun. They're around for a short while and then they die, but THEN they come back again. So we can't really take them too seriously.

Woah, now we're getting abstract here. Florals that don't look like flowers are great because they're more unisex and less fussy. For example, we have this wrap above that looks like sunbursts...


Print by Whimsy Press

...or this wrap that looks like some sort of cellular protoplasm. Cool, right? Flowers don't have to be frilly or girly. But we still get the idea that these are flowers, the colors of nature, and blooms of happiness that we get a small glimpse of once a year. (Awww).

As for accessories, Suzanne B. Webbil created these super pretty rosettes for gift wrapping. Slap these mamas on a brown paper gift and prepare for the "oohs" and "aahs" to roll in.

So kids, Mother's Day is only about a month a way. You have a cool mom; wrap her gift in cool floral paper that doesn't suck.

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