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Well the sun is out, the temperatures have risen and the summer flowers are in full bloom! We are lucky enough to have the beautiful Galloway Forest on our door step and at this time of year you'll find water lilies floating and flowering on Bruntis Loch.
Today I'm looking deeper into these beautiful blooms, their symbolism, art inspiration and of course, sharing some of my favourite water lily inspired gifts from talented Etsy sellers.
Water Lily Flowers
Water lilies, from the family Nymphaeaceae, are aquatic flowering plants with around 70 known species worldwide.
They grow from rhizomes that need to be rooted in soil under water and can be found in both temperate and tropical climates.
The leaves and subsequent flowers grow up from the base of the plant and float or protrude from the surface of the water.
Water lilies have become a popular plant in garden ponds as they help to aerate the water, give protection and habitats for insects and of course, look beautiful while in bloom!
Art Inspired by Water Lilies
The Japanese Footbridge by Claude Monet, 1899. Image from Canva. Courtesy of National Gallery of Art, Washington.
One of the most famous collections of art inspired by water lilies has to be the stunning series Water Lilies by French Impressionist Claude Monet (1840-1926).
The series of approximately 250 paintings depict the beautiful scenes and natural surrounds of his home and garden in Giverny, France. Most prominent of all throughout this collection are the appearance of water lilies.
Monet spent years transforming his garden and adding the ponds, bridges, trees and plants that became his muse.
Although his water garden had a Japanese feel, Money had never visited Japan himself.
I’m fascinated by Monet’s painting and even chose to study them many moons ago at school. I think now that I have began painting from nature myself, I can more fully understand and appreciate his love for the natural world.
Water Lily Meanings & Symbolism
Water lilies hold great significance in many countries but maybe none as highly as Bangladesh or Sri Lanka. Both countries have the water lily as their national flower; the white water lily in Bangladesh and the blue water lily in Sri Lanka.
They also hold significant symbolism in different cultures and religions. In Bhudism, the water lily and lotus flower are seen as symbols of enlightenment and so are held in the highest of regards.
Water lilies come in a variety of different colours, with each colour holding a different meaning or symbolism with the flower. Below I’ve mapped out the meanings of each so you can get an idea of the symbolism surrounding these gorgeous flowers.
White Water Lily- The white water lily is known to symbolise mental purity, new ideas and enlightenment.
Yellow Water Lily- Yellow water lilies symbolise unity, creation, gracefulness.
Pink Water Lily- Pink water lilies carry knowledge and grace and also symbolise teachings.
Red Water Lily- Red water lilies symbolise love, passion, and lust.
Purple Water Lily- Purple water lilies have links in mythology to psychic development and mystic powers.
Blue Water Lily - The blue water lily symbolises wisdom and the sharing of knowledge. With all of these powerful meaning surrounding water lilies, it comes as no surprise that they are becoming popular in wedding bouquets and floral gifts.
However, sourcing water lilies in bloom for floral tributes can be hard work. So to make things easier, I've listed my favourite water lily themed gift ideas below from small independent businesses.
Water Lily Gift Ideas
Ceramic Waterlily Coaster by Damsontreepottery
1. The Waterlily House Art Print
I absolutely adore this art print inspired by The Waterlily House at Kew Gardens
I'm lucky enough to have visited Kew Garden's myself, and feel the magic and beauty of this enchanting place has been captured wonderfully by Nikki in this Gouache print.
Packaged in biodegradable and compostable wrapping, this lovely piece of art would make a gorgeous gift for a July birthday.
2. Sterling Silver Waterlily Necklace
An exquisite piece of Sterling Silver jewellery, handmade by David of Lavan Jewellery.
This stunning piece comprises of 8 hand sculpted lily pads and a delicate water lily flower formed together on a necklace chain. It's an incredible piece of contemporary jewellery made to the highest of standards and would make a gorgeous statement piece for a July wedding.
3. WaterLily Coasters by damsontreepottery
These handmade ceramic lily pad coasters would make lovely July gifts for birthdays, weddings or new homes. Hand cut, bisque fired and glazed with gorgeous green glazes, each one is totally unique. Choose from different sizes and colours.
4. Handpainted Silk Scarf by Silkyladydesign
This 100% natural silk scarf has been beautifully hand painted using a range of silk painting techniques. The result is a stunning piece featuring yellow water lilies on a deep marine blue backing.
I love how each piece created by Silky Lady is an expression of what she feels in that moment as well as how she views nature in all its glory.
5. Monet's Garden Greeting Card by MelanieSkeltonArt
I absolutely love this delicate greetings card! Such beautiful illustrations from original ink and watercolour artwork by Melanie Skelton.
It's a beautiful representation of summer flowers and of course features our Flower of the Month, the gentle water lily.
And that's it, my July flower of the month. This blog post is part of my Flower of the Month series that I will be sharing through 2021. You can take a look at my pervious post June Flower of the Month here which includes the recipe to my rose hip syrup!
Thanks so much for reading,