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Sunday, October 24, 2010

Carnations Aren't Just For Proms Anymore

Last year, we lived through bold bangles, harem pants, Barack Obama, social media, smartphones, Glee, and sibling names starting with the same letter (think Khloe, Kourtney and Kim Kardashian).

Van Gogh Carnations

Not always scorned, carnations
were painted by Van Gogh (above),
da Vinci, and other masters
This year's trends: food trucks, the Tea Party, chocolate covered bacon, Irish baby names (Connor, Killian, Braden), and – ready for this?carnations.

For years synonymous with cheap, prom night boutonnieres, the carnation was so reviled that upmarket florists hewed to the mantra, "No mums, no carns!" or risk upsetting their chic clientele.

That's about to change. The lowly carnation is making a comeback, writes Lettie Teague in the Wall St. Journal. She reports that Oscar de la Renta, Martha Stewart and Sarah Jessica Parker are among celebrities who have been seen sporting the flower recently.

Society stylist and event designer Bronson Van Wyck has taken a shine to them, too. During the just concluded Fashion Week, he assembled 30,000 carnations into fat topiary balls hung from the ceiling on fishing lines.

Teague says that today's carnations "look nothing like the flowers found at the corner store. They're much larger and showier, more vibrantly colored."

They come in a wide range of hues—yellow, red, pink, white and even green (natural, not dyed) and are grown primarily in Colombia. The main source for carnations used to be luxe Cap d'Antibes, attesting to the flowers once exclusive lineage.

Read the complete article here.