Traipsing around my usual haunts (here, the Ottoman Garden at the Missouri Botanical Garden), this absolute jewel of a plant, the deep, dark red of Papaver oreophilum, just glows atop the foliage surrounding it. But the velvety black centers are equally enchanting, comprised of multiple rings of stamens and the round pistil that will remain long after the petals fall, as the unique poppy seed pod. Some varieties of poppy sport centers in vivid yellow, or chartreuse, or white or apple green! How could it take me so long to come out with a set in honor of these beauties?
The double orange Poppies — Papaver intermedium — bloom in a riot of wild orange petals, and light up my neighbor’s garden like a fiery hedge.
I mean, just look at this crazy thing! I can’t take my eyes off that purpley center. And there are well over a hundred species in the Papaver family, I’ve captured just a scant few!
Each hairy bud and wonderfully sinewy stem has a mind of its own ... I’m reminded of dinosaurs with extremely long necks, arching to chomp the leaves of a tree. The buds (two sepals, actually) hold the tightly packed, tissue-paper-like petals until they are ready to absolutely BURST!
Even at the end of the flowers’ life cycle, there is such exquisite and quiet beauty. As in this pink Papaver somniferum, again in the Ottoman Garden, from last summer:
From Shirley to Oriental, Himalayan to Icelandic... a quick Google image search for Poppies will yield enough color combinations and incredibly colored centers to inspire coloring for DAYS! I take that back... MONTHS! Oh heck, maybe even YEARS! :)
With the multitude of coloring options of Poppies in mind, I’ve designed a new stamp set that will provide you with so many blooms and buds, you’ll have a chance to explore all kinds of glorious color combos! May I present the newest clear stamp set, just one part of the Cultivate Love Collection:
Poppies is going to be a fun set to have on hand. For those times when you need a showstopper on your card front, these flowers pack a big punch! Or just to stamp and color for yourself, to experiment with hues to create your own rainbow.
The big bouquet of Poppies (which I modeled after Icelandic Poppies) bubbles up from a Chinese ginger jar. My inspiration for the vessel is the blue-and-white pottery that my grandmother Dorothy always had in her home and antiques shop as I was growing up. She and my grandfather went on frequent buying trips to the UK, where they would bring back all kinds of blue and white treasures, many of them English, but many Chinese that had been imported to England years before. The one I drew features the Chinese character meaning “Double Happiness.” Ginger Jars are perennially in in the decorating world, and I just noticed yesterday that there’s a cluster on them on the newest cover of House Beautiful - even featuring Poppies and Ranunculus...
|Photo: @HouseBeautiful on Instagram|
Take it away, Bloom Brigade!
We hope to see you back here tomorrow for another clear set preview that is sure to get your senses tingling, especially if you like herb gardening, ribbons, and hand-drawn lettering... (three things that I find essential to life.)