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Paper flowers have been used for centuries for religious offerings, decoration and memorials. During the mid-1800s women often kept busy with various crafts like needlepoint, embroidery, beadwork and creating paper flowers. Many books were available outlining the processes for many of these crafts at the time. Often times real flowers did not survive the long trip to the cemetery making paper flowers a better choice. These paper wreaths were used as casket and grave side decoration and were often preserved in homemade shadow boxes after the ceremony as a memorial to their loved one.
This is a wonderful example of a Victorian era paper wreath. Shaped in the form of a heart this wreath contains various different colors of roses. Roses were one of the most popular flowers to make as they were beautiful and easy to make. Roses are a symbol of love and respect and were a popular flower to use in mourning. The wreath is backed with black velvet and encased in a crate attached to a wooden picture frame. Perhaps what is most special about this piece is the homemade quality to it. You can tell the maker used whatever supplies they had around their home. The glass is not one solid piece of glass but two separate pieces creating a gap. There is a metal wire attached to the back for hanging.
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