Monday, January 31, 2011

Camellia History & Design

The Camellia plant was christened in 1735 by the Swedish naturalist Carl von Lineu in honor of Jesuit Georg Kamel, a missionary in the Philippines. All of the 267 species recorded within the genus Camellia originated from eastern and southern Asia, from the Himalaya east to Korea and Indonesia. In China, Camellias have been treasured in the last three centuries as ornamental plants, and to provide food from fermented young leaves, cosmetics, culinary and industrial oils, high grade charcoal for fuel, and tea. (For more Camellia history, click here.)

Below, we've listed some of our favorite Camellia inspired items...

1. The Lady of the Camellias (French: La Dame aux camélias) is a novel based on a true story by Alexandre Dumas, first published in 1848, that was subsequently adapted for the stage. The Lady of the Camellias premiered at the Théâtre du Vaudeville in Paris, France on February 2, 1852.

2. Chanel has a history with Camellias and has since used them for both fashion design and design inspiration. Here are the Camellia sandals for sale currently by Chanel.

3. This floral wallpaper is based completely on the Camellia flower.

4. The camellia is the most popular and highly respected flower in the Chinese culture. It was the national flower of Dai Li, an ancient southern kingdom of China and it symbolized steadfastness and excellence. Here they are painted on a Chinese fan.

5. This famous poster, "Lady of the Camellias" by Alfons Mucha in 1896, can found in a myriad of variations all over the world.

6. White Camellia perfume by St. John, introduced in 1998.

7. Here is another designer Katy Kane who used a camellia for her inspiration for a little fabric bow.

8. The camellias on this Chinese wall screen in Coco Chanel’s apartment were the inspiration for her famous “C’s”. (Wanderlust & Co.)

9. Camellia painted dinnerware.

1 comment:

Janna said...

Hello Lenkin Design!

Liked your post (as you know I would).

What are your favorite camillias?

My favorite from the "old-timers" planted by my Mom is Audolph Audison. It lives at the front corner of my house, is pruned in an
artistic, curvy way. winding its way up to the roof where I make it stop- but it would keep going if i would let it! I call it "peppermint striped" but it's not really striped but varigated and blooms like crazy!

Two of my purchases were "Buttons and Bows", a pretty ruffled pink" and "Snow Drop" (I think that's the name), a bush that blooms like flowering branches with very small, pinkish white flowers.