Louis XIV’s favourite colour was flame, an orangish-red which worked well with his self designated title of ‘The Sun King’. Louis wore it frequently. The French court was all about gaining the kings favour, and a good way to become his favourite was to wear his favourite colour, thus it’s frequently seen in garments and trimmings in 17th and early 18th century portraits. Women wore it in ribbons and feathers: Or wrapped around their body in wraps: Men wore it as bows around their neck: Or as sashes tied around their torsos: Whole interiors were done in it, and family groups wore it as jackets and robes: If you didn’t like flame, but still wanted to kiss up to the king, inflicting it on your children in large quantities was always an option. They could wear it as historical fantasy dress: Or pseudo-classical short clothes: Or stiff, old fashioned dresses with flame rosettes: Even Louis’ neglected wife and his kids wore the colour: Yep. Mid 17th century France was aflame.
I love the colours of the natural world. They are so amazing, so vivid, and come in such unexpected, unusual combinations. Bromeliad pink may be one of my favourite colours ever. My bridesmaids wore bromeliad pink. I’ll write about them tomorrow. There are bromeliads all over my parent’s farm in Hawaii, most planted by me. I love checking in on them when I am home. This bromeliad came out in my last two days, growing and opening almost before my eyes: These are a different kind of bromeliad:
My house and yard are awash in spring flowers. There are pots of anemones beside the front door, and tulips and freesias lining the walk. Last year’s tulip and freesia bulbs are blooming beneath the camilla bush, dotted with tall irises in deepest violet and cream and gold. The colours are amazing: saturated fuchsia and pinks, bright oranges, palest lemon yellows, pollen, golden yellow and inky black, flowers in brick red with ochre throats and lavender stamens. I want to capture them all, to replicate them in fabrics and revel in their vividness.